Wow, what a day. It started off as a quiet Monday at Valley Ranch, at least on the outside. We were all getting ready for another week of OTAs and I'm sure a lot of bored sports writers were thinking of their next Roy Williams masterpiece. A slow day at work, and then BAM! Some big news starts to break in the world of the Dallas Cowboys.
First came the news on the Adam Jones reinstatement. When rumors started to fly about Jones being traded to Dallas I just hung my head and sighed a very deep sigh. I was uncomfortable with the thought of a person with Jones' history playing for my beloved Cowboys, especially after Jerry had taken so much care and time to turn around the image of the team. But the trade went through and I resigned myself to the notion that he's a Cowboy and I have to support him, hoping that his turnaround is genuine.
Giving Jones this limited reinstatement was absolutely the right decision by Roger Goodell.. The commissioner had to realize that having Jones able to spend time with his teammates, coaches and most importantly Calvin Hill would give him the best oppurtunity to focus on football and take away his time off the field. The more time he spends at Valley Ranch the better it is for Jones, the Cowboys and the league. Now we just have to wait and hope that Jones can live up to his part of the bargain and stay out of trouble for the rest of his career. One more slip up and it is over for him, forever. Now his case will be reevaluated before the season starts, but if he is able to keep his nose clean I see Adam Jones playing in a Cowboys uniform on opening day.
Then came the big Terrell Owens contract extension. This completely came out of nowhere. At least with the Pacman news we had a few "sources" giving hints a decision would be made this week. With T.O. we had no warning at all. Owens was on Opie and Anthony recently and I listened to his interview (nothing really earth shattering in it either) and I seem to remember Owens saying that he wasn't worried in the least about his contract situation. In fact, he's been saying that all offseason. You have to think that Owens' good natured attitude about it all was influenced by a little inside information the rest of us weren't privy to. Like how the Cowboys and Owens were in the ballpark with a new deal. These things don't just come about overnight.
And what a great deal it is too. Stephen Jones has perfected the art of managing the salary cap. The Cowboys were seemingly pressed against the ceiling with no room for maneuvering and we were all wondering just how in the heck the Cowboys would be able to sign all these guys that were important to the core of this team. Well, Stephen worked his magic and after having signed Terence Newman, Marion Barber and Terrell Owens the Cowboys have managed to somehow free up nearly $3 million in cap space! It's incredible.
This deal also ensures that Owens remains a Cowboy for the rest of career, and now he should get his wish of being able to retire with a star on his helmet. He came to Dallas ostracized and dismissed from Philadelphia and a guy that was labeled a team killer. Many thought the volatile mix of Owens and Bill Parcells was a disaster waiting to happen. All Owens does is transform himself into a completely different person off the field while having some of the best years of his career. He deserved to be on the team for the rest of his career after what he has contributed during his time here.