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Owens' return sparks some interesting comments

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Lots of Owens related material to report on today. SI.com has a scoop I haven't seen anywhere else. All of the quotes are attributed to an unidentified Cowboys player, and are very negative about the whole Owens' situation, and not just the injury. So I have to question what the real motivation of the player is; perhaps we've got someone here who is likely to be cut or traded, or has felt the sting of Parcells' wrath and is not happy. According to the anonymous source, Parcells was a little perturbed by Terrell's continued absence, and ordered him back to practice.

SI.com has learned that the previous afternoon, during the team's training-camp practice in Oxnard, Calif., Cowboys coach Bill Parcells approached trainer Jim Maurer and pointedly said, "Look, you tell Terrell that tomorrow I want him out here for practice. Tomorrow's the day. I don't care. Tomorrow's the day."

I'm not sold, that's some very specific language for a Cowboys player to have overheard. There may be some truth to it, but if Parcells was going to do this, I'm pretty sure he wouldn't do it within earshot of another player. Here's more from the source:
"We all just sat and wondered, 'Who's gonna win this battle?'" says the Cowboys player. "As a player, you can't help but get distracted when something like that is going on. The guy comes out last every single practice, has somebody carrying his helmet and is always putting on his uniform at the last minute, and then he's out there riding the bike and drawing attention to himself. Even if he's not trying to be a deterrent -- and he clearly is -- it's obvious that the coach isn't happy.

"The bottom line is, he appeared to be healthy and wasn't practicing. So we'd sit and wonder, Who's gonna win? How's it gonna go down?'"


I don't know, that sounds like someone who is very disgruntled with the Cowboys. But I'm not the kind of guy who states an opinion and will never admit that he was wrong, so maybe things were getting a little testy behind the scenes. But I'm still suspect of this article, because whoever said these things is obviously no fan of Owens, so I remain skeptical of their motivation. What do you guys think? Am I just ignoring the obvious?

Hat tip to silverblue5 who alerted me to this article from Peter King on the Owens' return over in the diaries. Click here to read silverblue5's Diary entitled "Don't Mess With da Big Tuna".

There's more Owens stuff, but I put it below the fold so this post wouldn't run too long on the front page. Click the link below to read the rest.

JJT has some more Owens related stuff in the DMN pay section. Here's a quote from Stephen Jones:

"I don't think it ever got to the point where it was an issue," said vice president Stephen Jones. "As it got to the point it was improving, Bill obviously watches guys as they rehab and work, and Bill was starting to see it was close, and it was about time. More than anybody, T.O. is glad he's out there."

You could read that as a tacit endorsement of the idea that Parcells was feeling that Owens should be back at practice. But I get the feeling that Parcells probably always feels that way, so I'm not sure how much this case is different than any other.
Owens said improving his rapport on the field with Bledsoe is a top priority.

The 11-year veteran showed signs of rust, dropping a pass after cornerback Terence Newman hit him. The pass, thrown slightly behind Owens, was intercepted by safety Keith Davis.

On the next play, Owens beat Newman on a deep post for a long touchdown. Later, he dropped a deep ball after getting behind Jacques Reeves.


Some of you guys have already discussed that the one weakness Owens has on the field is that he sometimes drops balls. Hopefully, this was just first practice back rustiness, and not a sign of things to come.

Todd Archer has an article on the same subject.

"It just became a little bit of a distraction," tight end Jason Witten said. "It became a bit of a pain because you have to deal with it and answer all the questions about when he would be back. Now he's back, and it's going to help our offense. It's just good to have him in the huddle."

Witten sounds frustrated by the constant questions from the press. I totally understand that, he just echoing Parcells' comments that he doesn't want to be a "trained pig" who talks about it everyday. Unfortunately for everybody, that's the baggage that Owens brings with him.

Owens wasn't the only guy to return to practice yesterday.

Lost in Owens' return was the return of rookie linebacker Bobby Carpenter, who missed two days with a foot injury suffered late in the preseason opener at Seattle.

"It's all right," Carpenter said after practice. "It's difficult not being out there, and you don't want to get behind when you're out there. I need to get back as quickly as I could."

Todd Archer also has some tidbits from yesterday's practice.

Bill Parcells does not let anything go by in a practice. After linebacker Kevin Burnett came in for a sack on Tony Romo, he said, "We just lost our quarterback," so he had the offense re-run the play to get the protection right. When Burnett came free again, he looked to the coaches. "You're going to let him run free?" Parcells asked. When the answer was yes, he told Romo he had to get rid of the ball quicker.

Cornerbacks Jacques Reeves and Anthony Henry and safety Keith Davis had interceptions. Davis' pick came after Terrell Owens let a Bledsoe pass deflect off his hands.

Sean Ryan, in a fight with Tony Curtis for one of the final tight end spots, had two acrobatic catches down the seam Wednesday.

Sam Hurd is still one of the top stories in camp, but the undrafted free agent receiver let at least two balls go through his hands Wednesday.

Sounds like Hurd might be running into his first struggle with the new expectations placed on him because of his good work in camp so far. Archer also said that Jamaica Rector had the catch of the day on a long bomb; Willie Pile had the hit of the day when he popped Tyson Thompson on a running play. and Jason Witten had a case of the "dropsies" yesterday on two separate passes.