You Probably Hate Him But TO Belongs In The HOF
Diva. Loudmouth. Primadonna. Hall of Famer.
Terrell Owens has been labeled all of these terms...except one...by fans and media everywhere. It's probably that lone outlier, the one that labels him worth of a bust in Canton, that describes him best.
Every football fan in America, and perhaps those overseas, have cursed the name of Terrell Owens. Heck, if you're a fan of the 49ers, Cowboys, Eagles or the Allen Wranglers (the indoor football team Owens briefly spent his post-NFL days in 2011), you hated him when he was on your own team. The touchdown dances, the off-field drama, the shirtless sit-ups in his driveway...yeah, remember that?...are what you best remember him for, but when you tear the ridiculousness away, he was a brilliant receiver on the field. He was the showstopping receiver before Odell and Julio.
The Pro Football Hall of Fame houses and immortalizes the greatest players ever to play the sport. And while some of the inductees are indeed outstanding gentlemen, it's not exactly a group of church boys. For example, one of the guys who did get the nod over Owens? Brett Favre. You may recall a certain incident involving his anatomy and Jenn Sterger. OJ Simpson has a whole television series about his murder trial going on right now. Say what you will about Owens's demeanor, but he never got on the wrong side of the law. Lines were occasionally crossed...there was the whole spitting incident with DeAngelo Hall for example...but when he wasn't dancing, he wasn't breaking the law or getting into trouble. Acting like a nutjob sure...remember the short lived The T.O. Show? But nothing over the top.
One thing Owens never had was a Super Bowl ring, which seems to be the go-to argument when defending Hall of Fame snubs. With wide receivers, it's different, though. Without the proper surroundings and assistance, a tremendous wide receiver can be neutralized. Just look at what happened to Larry Fitzgerald during the time after Kurt Warner and before Carson Palmer. Owens did have talent around him...Donovan McNabb and Tony Romo threw him the ball...but there was only one Super Bowl appearance on his resume.
But let's remember that Super Bowl...the 39th edition, held between his Philadelphia Eagles against the New England Patriots. Owens, who hadn't played since mid-December, played injured in the Big Game, and played spectacularly, nabbing 9 receptions for 122 yards, despite the Philadelphia loss. He continued to put up the spectacular numbers afterwards
So, Owens and his brand of on-field comedy were not appreciated in its time, and his career ended sans a ring. But the Hall of Fame guess has to be made. The Hall of Fame isn't a schoolboy choir, and it never has been. It's a place made solely to honor the greats of the game of football...playing the game of football. Doesn't matter if you didn't do it the "right way". You played, you made history, and even had a little fun along the way. It's safe to say Owens did all three...put him in Canton.
Geoff Magliocchetti enjoyed Owens's time in Dallas, but will never forgive him for the stomping on the star stunt. Join in his dislike on Twitter @GeoffMags5490.
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