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A Ravens Insider Editorial

In his haste to proclaim to the world that he's been screwed over by the 49ers, the NFL Players Association, the NFL management council, and the Baltimore Ravens, Terrell "the ego" Owens forgot to blame one more person: His agent.<br><br>

Owens' agent, David Joseph, is the root cause for this soap opera that has developed between Owens, the Ravens, the 49ers, the Eagles, and the NFL. Had he just been semi-competent, and filed the paperwork to void the final three years of Owens' contract on time, allowing Owens to become a free agent, T.O. would be Philadelphia's headache to deal with. 

According to NFLPA union chief Gene Upshaw, Joseph should have received a notification in the form of a fax which clearly outlined the deadline (February 21) to file for free agency 11 days in advance. 

Not only did Joseph have those 11 days to send a fax back to the NFLPA union, notifying them that Owens wanted to opt out of his deal with the 49ers, but he should have also had an idea that the old deadline from last year (sometime in March) was going to be moved up, because there were discussions between the NFL and NFLPA about setting a new deadline.

You would think that an agent that only has one big money client in Owens would have been more on top of these proceedings. By not sending the paperwork to the NFL on time, Joseph not only blew Owens' last chance at receiving a lucrative signing bonus, but he blew his chance at receiving part of that cut. 

However, the truth always seems to fly past Owens' face. Problems always occur due to someone else's infractions, not because Owens or his associates made a mistake. 

Instead of owning up to the situation he's currently in, Owens is looking to take the easy way out. By crowing to the media about his desire to play for the Eagles, and not the Ravens, T.O. has created enough of an uproar that the NFLPA is thinking about rescinding the trade that was consummated between the Ravens and 49ers. 

According to a story in the Washington Post, the union will present Owens' case to Stephan B. Burbank, who is the special master in charge of settling disputes regarding the collective bargaining agreement. 

If Burbank agrees to rescind the trade, the Ravens would get back the second-round pick it gave up in order to assume Owens' contract. 

However, it's hard to imagine this scenario taking place considering that it's clear as day that Joseph missed the deadline. 

When the dust settles, Owens should report to training camp in July as a Baltimore Raven, whether he likes it or not. He is only delaying the inevitable.

In the meantime, T.O. is alienating his would be teammates, fan base, and the entire Ravens' franchise by spouting off about how he does not want to be in Baltimore. 

However, Owens will find a way to weasel his way through this issue as well…

The one element of this "T.O. against the world" drama that has been overlooked by the sharpie wielding receiver is that Philadelphia may not want him as bad as he wants them.

Philadelphia had every opportunity to land Owens through a trade, but the team wasn't willing to give up anything higher than a fifth-round pick and receivers James Thrash and Billy McCullen to the 49ers in exchange for Owens. 

According to reports from this site, and ESPN, San Francisco asked Philadelphia to increase its offer, but the Eagles' wouldn't budge. The Eagles didn't want to part with any of the picks that the 49ers wanted from them, or any of the players on San Francisco's wish list.

The Eagles wanted Owens for the deal they outlined. 

On the other hand, Ravens' general manager Ozzie Newsome made it known from the start that he was willing to part with his second-round pick in order to acquire the four-time Pro Bowl wideout. 

Considering that the Ravens were already without a first-round pick in this year's draft, giving up a second-round pick to land Owens was a bold move. The Ravens were more aggressive from the jump, and clearly laid out the best offer to San Francisco.

You can't blame the 49ers for accepting the Ravens deal. 

The Eagles claim that they were given permission from San Francisco to start negotiating with David Joseph, but the 49ers contend that they never told the Eagles that they approved the trade.

In any case, trying to figure out which side was right in the "He said", "She said" blame game is irrelevant. The bottom line is if Philly wanted Owens badly enough, they would have stepped up to the plate with a better offer at some point during the 72-hour window that San Francisco gave teams to make a trade proposal.


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