Question of the Day: Is Terrell Owens' NFL career over?
Writers from around the Tribune Co. discuss the future of veteran wide receiver Terrell Owens, who had surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in April. Feel free to weigh in with a comment of your own.
Sam Farmer, Los Angeles Times
There aren’t many athletes who could overcome a devastating knee injury this late in a career and come back to make a contribution. Then again, Terrell Owens is a physical freak who has defied long odds before -– think of the way he recovered to play for the Eagles in the Super Bowl against the Patriots.
Yes, his abilities have been on the decline, but I don’t see him ending his career on such a quiet note.
While there’s always a chance he could retire before the start of the season, I think it’s more likely he tries to bounce back in time to hook on in the last quarter of the season with a team making a playoff run. Even at 38, which he’ll be then, he’ll likely be better than a lot of third or fourth receivers around the league.
I seriously doubt it. Although the injury is shrouded in mystery, there has been no suggestion that it's a career-ending tear. Obviously, when a 37-year-old receiver tears his ACL, it's not a minor injury, either.
Without having many of the facts, my guess is that Owens will train like crazy and rehab the knee back into some semblance of NFL shape. For all his issues, being in excellent condition has never been a problem for him. He knows how to use his body.
Still, I presume he's not going to be playing when the season starts. It will take time to get the knee back, but once it is, I believe some team will give him a shot. Even if it's a cameo in a Hall of Fame career, it will allow Owens to go out on his own terms.
Tom Housenick, Allentown Morning Call
Knee injuries to football players who rely on speed and athleticism are never good, especially to those who are 37 years old. I’m sure Terrell Owens will do what he can to make a few more bucks and attempt an NFL comeback after his ACL surgery. But I am hoping his career is finally over.
I’m tired of his astronomical ego, nonstop mouth and alligator arms. He once was a very talented wide receiver, one of the NFL’s best for a short time. He might have a special place in the hearts of some Eagles fans for his Super Bowl performance several years back. But –- and I might be showing my age -- I’m tired of the me-first attitude of too many of today’s professional athletes. Mouthing off at the coaches and players on the sidelines during games. Calling out teammates in the media. Where have you gone Barry Sanders? Goodbye, Terrell Owens. I’ll never miss you.
Fred Mitchell, Chicago Tribune
Terrell Owens always has been able to talk a good game, even when his performance on the field occasionally spoke volumes about his advancing age. But this latest speed bump -- ACL surgery coupled with his turning 38 on Dec. 7 -- should give the six-time Pro Bowl performer pause as a free agent to consider retirement.
I believe he has a future in pro football, just no longer as an exceptional wide receiver since he is expected to be sidelined for six months. The NFL Network or other related sports news outlets would figure to indulge the flamboyant T.O.
Photo: Terrell Owens attends Game 3 of the NBA Finals in Dallas. Credit: Mike Ehrmann / Getty Images