Bills receiver Terrell Owens continues to bemoan his new reality.
And, for a change, we agree with him as to its existence, even if we disagree with him as to its cause.
“I think over the years that’s always gotten me in trouble and created
some sort of division in the locker room with guys on the team,” Owens
said Wednesday of the risk that things he says will be taken out of context. “I try to do the right thing now. And
even when I try to do the right thing, it’s not the right thing. I’m in
a situation where I’m in a no-win situation.
“I just try to do the best I can do without offending someone.”
He should have added the word “directly.”
Again, he thinks that it’s enough to simply not say something critical or inflammatory about his quarterback or coaching staff. But because of his high profile (something on which he has capitalized with a burgeoning TV career), keeping his mouth shut isn’t enough.
When it comes to the question of whether he’s frustrated, he can’t just repeat catch phrases like, “I’m just running the plays that are called.” If he wants people to believe that he’s not frustrated, he needs to affirmatively say that he’s not frustrated — and he needs to be persuasive.
(Hey, T.O. has said he wants to act. He should consider it advance training for his post-football career.)
Though there are folks who would suggest that Owens might be lying if he were to say with a smile on his face that he’s not frustrated (we know no one who would be so cynical), this falls within the band of permissible prevarication in matters of football. Honesty, at times, needs to take a back seat to a team’s greater goals. Given Owens’ stature and history, the media will want to know what he thinks, and the media will be looking for signs of acrimony or controversy because that kind of stuff generates interest.
So, yes, Owens needs to do more than keep his mouth shut. He needs to open his mouth and say things that will get the reporters to believe that there’s nothing they can get from Owens that anyone would really want to read.
Is it fair? Hell if I know. But it’s the reality. Owens can either adapt to the reality, or he can continue to complain that he’d prefer a different reality.