Terrell Owens, the polarizing wide-receiver that's still looking for a job, held a public workout at a high school in Calabasas, California. Unfortunately for the 37-year-old, no teams showed up.
Owens has nursed a knee injury for most of the regular season, having had surgery on his anterior cruciate ligament in April. He caught passes and ran several other drills during the workout, but Owens did not run the 40-yard dash.
Owens remained optimistic about his chances of finding a team to join: Just because they weren't [at the workout] doesn't mean they weren't interested, Owens said in an ESPN report. I can guarantee that all 32 teams were interested.
It's a confident claim made by a man whose receiving statistics have significantly fallen since his 2007 season with the Dallas Cowboys. Owens put up 1355 yards receiving during that season--almost a career high--then began to taper off; during the 2008 season, he had 1052 yards receiving; in 2009 had 829 yards receiving; last season, he increased slightly, but failed to reach the 1,000 yard mark, ending the season with a total of 983 yards receiving.
It's been challenging, from a physical standpoint, just to get my knee back where it needs to be, said Owens in an NFL.com report. I'm not worried about the naysayers saying that I can come back and that I'm wasting my time. I think what I showed today speaks for itself.
What also speaks for itself is Owens' short history with all of the teams he's played for. In nearly every team he's been a part of, Owens has divided his team and verbally attacked his QB or his offensive coordinators.
Owens began his career in San Francisco, where he lambasted his quarterback Jeff Garcia, the man still responsible for giving Owens some of the best numbers of his career. In a Playboy interview, Owens was asked if he though Jeff Garcia was gay. Owens responded by saying, If it looks like a rat and smells like a rat, by golly, it is a rat.
Owens had gotten in arguments on the field with Donovan Mcnabb while both were playing for the Philadelphia Eagles, too. Mcnabb, in one of the best seasons of his career, helped bring the Eagles to the Superbowl, where they lost a close game to the New England Patriots. Still, Owens has shown no love to McNabb.
Last year, when McNabb received a new contract, Owens tweeted, How do u justify a 78 million dollar contract w/this type of performance?. Owens was on the 2-7 Cincinnati Bengals at the time of the tweet.
Owens time playing for the Buffalo Bills and the Cincinnati Bengals was short and far-from-sweet. In both seasons, he failed to hit the century mark receiving by the end of the season. He also failed to break the 10 touchdown mark, something he hadn't failed to do since 2005.
His inconsistent and declining statistical performances, in addition to the confrontational personality of the ex-Pro Bowl wide-receiver, have been a large deterrent to most teams. The question for most team general managers remains: Is Owens worth the risk?
Apparently, judging by the absence of NFL talent scouts at T.O.'s workout, teams believe they can win games without Owens help. But if history has taught us anything, it's that NFL executives are judged by immediate success, and for those teams that need just one wide-receiver, Owens may be seen as a viable option. Whether Owens still has the ability to bring a mid-tier team to a championship level remains to be seen.