The big noise around the NFL the last couple days is that the Dallas Cowboys are fed up with Terrell Owens‘ negative impact on team chemistry and are debating whether to release the future Hall-of-Fame wide receiver. “I think some of people want to just cut our losses and get rid of all those guys … T.O., Tank [Johnson], Pacman [Jones],” a source told ESPN. That’s the kind of stuff people start throwing around when you follow up two disappointing early playoff bootings with an even-more-disappointing late-season choke-job that leaves you out of the tournament altogether. I personally doubt the Cowboys would dump T.O. though – he’s been a distraction the last couple years but you can’t say it’s been as bad as it was in Philly or San Francisco. Blaming it all on T.O. would be a bit gutless at any rate. Then again, I’m not in the locker room – maybe he really is that big a jerk, and there is no choice but to cut him loose.
So let’s say the Cowboys do decide to give T.O. his walking papers, making him a free agent. Assuming we all agree the Vikings could use a big-time playmaking wide receiver on their team…well, I’ll just come out and ask it: Would you take a chance on Terrell Owens if only for one year?
There are a couple main questions the brain trust would have to answer before considering such a move: 1) Is there enough leadership in our locker room to counteract the negative impact Owens would likely have on it?; and, 2) Could our quarterback handle having this SOB barking at him every time he goes a few plays without getting the ball? I don’t necessarily know the answer to the first question, but I do know the answer to the second: If Tarvaris Jackson is quarterback, then no way. T-Jack’s confidence is shaky enough as it is without having that to put up with. Without question, the signing of T.O. would mean a new direction at quarterback for the Vikes. You would have to bring in a veteran guy who could not only stand his screaming but possibly scream back at him. Among potentially available QBs, only Kurt Warner, Brett Favre and Kerry Collins would seem to fit that profile (we assume Jeff Garcia and Donovan McNabb would be dead-set against a reunion with T.O., and anyway McNabb won’t be traded).
There’s one more very important question that needs to be asked here too: How desperate are the Vikings to take that next step? If the answer is “very desperate,” they might be willing to look at Owens. If the answer is “somewhat desperate,” I doubt that would be enough to make Owens seem attractive. I do know one thing for sure: With T.O. on the team, we would never want for entertainment.