We haven't heard much from Terrell Owens since his bizarre ESPN interview where
he positioned three family members behind him, who may as well have been cigar
store Indians they were so stiff. He then, with a tear in his eye, told Screamin A. Smith,
that he was retiring. Then he pretty much said, "My bad, just kidding", I'm ready to
come back from a knee injury. He made his family, Smith (if that's possible) and
himself, look like fools.
T.O. had an open workout for NFL teams a few days later. There was T.O. half-naked,
shredded toabout 4% body fat and not a single person showed up and had their popcorn
or stopwatches ready. Not even Adam Schefter, Chris Mortenson, or Mel Kiper, Jr.
showed up to get their scouting or scoop fix. It was crickets, nothing but crickets for
T.O. Several teams were in a need of a big-play receiver, not one of the them, in a
league where talent rules, picked up the phone to get T.O. in an NFL uniform. Not
really shocking, after all, he'd worn out his welcome with San Francisco, Baltimore,
Philadelphia, Dallas, Buffalo, and Cincinnati quicker than the Kardashian-Humphries marriage.
"With T.O., no matter how brilliant he can be on the field, the dark side is always lurking.
You don't know which T.O. you're going to get, and no one is comfortable risking that," an unidentified NFL team executive told GQ.
T.O's theatrics over his career in the NFL have been well-documented. The feud with
Donavan McNabb, the reported suicide attempt in Dallas, the list is longer than the one
for Tiger's extramarital affairs. Then there was that weird, uncomfortable interview on
ESPN. To teams in the NFL, T.O. just wasn't worth the headaches. He is finished in
the NFL, that's for sure. Apparently, so is the gravy train.
In a feature in the February issue of GQ, T.O. says he's just about out of cash. Paying
nearly $44,000 month to four women for child support can make quite a dent in one's
bank account. He never married any of the women he got pregnant saying one of them
was a "one-night stand" and the other were "repeat offenders" Nice, real, nice. And
apparently, when T.O. was doing those sit-ups for the media in front of his house in
Philadelphia, getting the popcorn ready in Dallas, and co-starring in Cincinnati with
Ochocinco in a reality show, his financial "advisers" were stealing his money. Haven't
we heard this before?
T.O. didn't read the story about Mark Brunell, who didn't see the story about Antoine
Walker, who didn't see the story about Mike Tyson. Collectively, these professional
athletes blew about $800 million dollars. T.O's. $80 million was just a smidgen of the
total bust. At least, he's still got his six-pack.
Outside of Jerry Rice, T.O. has caught more balls and scored more touchdowns than
any receiver on the planet. He doesn't have any Super Bowl rings, but he is carrying a
world of animosity on his shoulders.
"I will tell you this, and you will never be able to convince me otherwise, if another
player who had performed as well as I have on the field had done those same things, they
would shake their little heads and say, 'You gotta admire his enthusiasm,' or, 'Just look
at how much he loves the game!' He'd be a hero," he said.
Not surprisingly, T.O. isn't on the Christmas card list of many of the people he played
with or allowed to play with his money, "I don't have no friends. I don't want no friends.
That's how I feel," he said. T.O suffers from an affliction that destroys many athletes.
It's called the "Disease of Me." Everything has always been about T.O. He had to get
his money, his catches, and all the attention he could possibly get. Now, what
does he have? No money and no friends.
T.O., who's incredible shape, obviously needs the money. He might have to go the
way of Jose Canseco and turn into more of freak show than he already is. I'm sure
there will be appearances on "Joe's vs. Pro's" with John Rocker. And he'll try his hand
at Ultimate Fighting. It's sad. Almost as sad as T.O. thinking someone will still call him
from the NFL to play on their team.
"I'm ready," he says. "They may not be ready for me, but me, I'm ready."
Sorry, T.O. Nobody is ready for your popcorn. It's burnt and has a taste that makes people
can no longer stand.