Expect Nothing from Pacman

Now that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell reinstates newly-acquired Dallas cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones, in time for Jones to take part in training camp this summer, it's time to speculate.

The media has already set its collective drooling mechanism set on "FRENZY." At some point later this summer, Jerry Jones will probably start comparing Pacman to Deion Sanders.

And of course, radio talkshows will be full of fans debating whether he should start ahead of Anthony Henry or Terence Newman.

So while everyone has specific desires in mind for what Pacman could do this season, what should be reasonably expected?


The worst thing that can happen is if Cowboys administration and coaches — and fans — start to look ahead, planning what situations in which he can play, and how he'll contribute. Not that he doesn't have the talent to fulfill virtually everyone's expectations — he does.

But Jones also has shown that he can not be counted on. He received chance after chance after chance with the Tennessee Titans, and he let the organization down … again and again and again. He let his lawyers and family down. He let his fans down.

There's no question that when he's playing, he has immense talent. He has exceptional speed and coverage ability on defense, and is an elusive return specialist. On defense or on special teams, if he gets the ball in his hands, he's a threat to score.

But he also is a threat to screw up. Even when he went on the radio a few weeks ago to assure Dallas fans (and Cowboys officials who certainly have heard the interview), he couldn't offer an amount of time through which he could stay out of strip clubs. Given his history in such places, wouldn't it have been a wise move if he'd sworn he could avoid them?

The Cowboys have to look at the trade as a waste, as if they simply donated a draft pick to the Titans, because it is the only way anyone in Valley Ranch will sleep at night. If he stays out of trouble and becomes a useful member of the team, it's a bonus. If he joins Anthony Henry, Terence Newman and Mike Jenkins to give Dallas the most talented quartet of cornerbacks in the NFL, it's a bonus. If he suits up … even once … for the Cowboys, it has to be looked at as a bonus.

Chances are he will see the field this season. Chances are, he'll surround himself with enough responsible people that he can keep his name in the sports section of the newspaper only.

And if he does those things, he should get a chance to play for what should be the most talented team in the NFC this year.

Sounds like a really nice bonus.

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