Now, it seems almost a foregone conclusion that we should be the next foster-parent for this perennial problem-child of the NFL.
So let's lay it all out here on the table and look at it. The Pro's and Con's of Terrell Owens.
Let's start by asking one question: Do we need T.O. as a receiver? Are we weak, do we lack depth at the wide receiver position? While some would say yes, keep in mind that we have one sure hall-of-fame receiver in Rod Smith. Rod is reaching the twilight of his career. He has not lost a step yet, but it is not unreasonable to assume that at some point he will be physically ready to call it a career. Rod is easily the best wide receiver in team history, and one could argue that his leadership and example would be a great place for Terrell Owens to learn his lesson and become a good citizen.
But there is one problem with the idea that exposing T.O. to Rod would be a good thing: T.O. is not a rookie. He is not even a 3rd or 4th-year guy. He is, for better or for worse, his own man. It would be naive, and border-line stupid to assume that he is coachable, leadable, changeable at this point in his metamorphic life cycle. He may just be what he is, and if his history tells us anything, it tells us that the dried ink on a line means little to him.
Terrell Owens is a phenomenal football talent. But he comes with a price tag. Drew Rosenhaus has been an agent for T.O. But by definition, an agent is a catalyst for change. One could argue that Rosenhaus has been a catalyst, but that he has been a catalyst for disaster where T.O. is concerned. Everybody lost because of the bum advice Rosenhaus gave T.O., to be sure.
Now has T.O. learned his lesson? Will he be content to sign a contract laced with clauses stipulating that his actions and his behavior and his performance will directly and significantly affect how much he gets paid and if and when he gets paid.
Lawyers will likely earn as much crafting such a contract as T.O. might earn playing football the first year or two. If they are successful, he might come back and be the impact player he claims he is. If he does, and he behaves himself, it might work out splendidly.
However, one must consider this:
In San Francisco he had Steve Young and Jeff Garcia for QB's. By his exit from San Francisco, he had ragged on Garcia and basically tried to torpedo the guy in the media. By his exit from Philly, he had done the same thing to Donovan McNabb. So how long do you think it would take T.O. to tire of Jake Plummer? How many games do you realistically think it would take for T.O. to voice frustration over not getting the ball enough? How long before he complained about missed passes, bad play-calls or someone who just rubs him the wrong way?
That's the crux of the T.O. paradox. He is what he is. Believing that he can or will change with new surroundings in an invitation to infect your whole organization with the same type of cancer that destroyed the Eagles this season.
No matter how talented T.O. is, don't get sucked into his vortex by putting on rose-colored glasses and believing the choir boy who says he has learned his lesson. If you buy it, it could end very, very badly.
No pun intended, but my advice to the Broncos:
"Pass" on T.O.
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