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Bill Parcells: T.O. was disruptive, but I think I’d put him in Canton

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In Bill Parcells’ final season as a head coach, his Cowboys signed Terrell Owens. The two didn’t always see eye to eye, but Parcells, a Hall of Famer himself, said he believes Owens’ production warrants a place in Canton.

Asked directly on ESPN Radio in Los Angeles if he would vote for Owens, Parcells answered, “I think I would. I think I would.”

Having said that, Parcells didn’t sound extremely enthusiastic.

“I had my issues with him a little bit, but that’s not unlike some other players and you just have to deal with those things and make the best of it. Sometimes it’s not comfortable for everybody but you have to make the best of it,” Parcells said.

Owens was a five-time first-team All-Pro, and statistically he matches up favorably with any receiver not named Jerry Rice in NFL history.

“He certainly was highly productive,” Parcells said. “He was highly productive and did some very remarkable things on the field. He also came with some other things that you had to deal with. And sometimes they weren’t always pleasant for some of the places that he was. But that being said, it’s a production business and he did produce at an extremely high level.”

Still, Parcells did acknowledge that Owens was more than just a pain in the neck, and sometimes his antics actively hurt the team.

“There are things that go unseen by the public, and people watching the games — there are things that happen on the field that, even when they happen, the fans and the laymen do not recognize what happens,” Parcells said. “And in his case, he was somewhat unreliable in some of the things he would do. Sometimes we’d have a route that was called at 12 [yards] and he’d run it at nine [yards]. Well, that disrupts your quarterback and things like that. But that being said, he still was highly productive and I do think he warrants very, very strong consideration. I’ll be surprised if he doesn’t get in very shortly.”

There seems to be a groundswell of support for Owens after he was voted down this year. It’s unclear, however, whether that groundswell has caused any members of the Hall of Fame Selection Committee to change their minds.

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62 Responses to “Bill Parcells: T.O. was disruptive, but I think I’d put him in Canton”
  1. theimmaculatedeception says: Feb 14, 2017 1:49 PM

    Until Bilichek ran Parcells defense in New York, Bill Walsh (who found TO) offense was extremely disruptive to Parcells! 🙂

  2. benfranklinshat says: Feb 14, 2017 1:54 PM

    Pain in the neck he sometimes was, he should be in the HOF.

  3. babygaga19 says: Feb 14, 2017 1:56 PM

    Parcells was highly disruptive to every team he coached.

  4. davexucc says: Feb 14, 2017 1:57 PM

    I think that is why voters are having a hard time voting him in. Very talented, but very disruptive. I think TO and Ochocinco are in the same boat … great stats, but not great teammates.

    Obviously TO has much better stats, but neither have rings for a reason.

  5. maust1013 says: Feb 14, 2017 2:00 PM

    theimmaculatedeception says:
    Feb 14, 2017 1:49 PM
    Until Bilichek…
    ===============

    Bilichek? You do know that Bill Belichick and Brian Billick are 2 different guys right? One of them is arguably the greatest coach of all time and the other is Brian Billick

  6. RegisHawk says: Feb 14, 2017 2:00 PM

    LOL…it’s not a cheerocracy…but don’t let that stop you from fooling the gulls into thinking it is.

  7. pocketsstraight says: Feb 14, 2017 2:01 PM

    TO’s biggest sin was that he didn’t hide his emotions from the media. I’d wager that a number of HOF’ers were difficult teammates behind closed doors, but they kept it in the locker room. TO was TO wherever he was. Seems like an odd reason to keep him out of the Hall…

  8. motsuret06 says: Feb 14, 2017 2:03 PM

    I disagree with Parcells. T.O. should be put into an insane asylum and forget ofher halls at this time.

  9. ricko1112 says: Feb 14, 2017 2:05 PM

    That’s settled then. TO really was the locker room cancer we all heard stories about.

    He had great #’s, but did his antics and locker room divisiveness cost teams more than his #’s helped?

  10. weepingjebus says: Feb 14, 2017 2:06 PM

    I prefer good citizens too, but being disruptive and abrasive often goes with the terroritory of being a great football player. This is not a knitting circle. He had a long and successful career and his coaches and teammates put up with him precisely because of his talents. A little late to complain about it now.

  11. granadafan says: Feb 14, 2017 2:08 PM

    “There are things that go unseen by the public, and people watching the games — there are things that happen on the field that, even when they happen, the fans and the laymen do not recognize what happens,” Parcells said. “And in his case, he was somewhat unreliable in some of the things he would do. Sometimes we’d have a route that was called at 12 [yards] and he’d run it at nine [yards]. Well, that disrupts your quarterback and things like that.
    =================================================

    That’s a very interesting take that most don’t see. Did TO do this deliberately or just didn’t know the plays very well. It’s often said that TO worked hard on the field and never gave up. This admission by Parcells sheds new light on him.

    Still belongs in the hall though. I think the voters are just punishing him for all his antics and giving him the hard time he gave everyone else. It’s all about payback.

  12. genericcommenter says: Feb 14, 2017 2:15 PM

    First time I’ve heard about him running the wrong routes. Parcells is probably the guy who liked him the least and says he should get in = he should get in.

  13. btv77 says: Feb 14, 2017 2:16 PM

    I don’t understand why people are crying out to defend TO. The HOF selection process has not changed since he was in the league. Through his actions he clearly decided he did not care about the HOF. Not sure if his mom told him but you can’t go around treating everyone poorly just because you can get away with it and then expect them to give you a ringing endorsement.

    #basicsocialskills

  14. mongo3401 says: Feb 14, 2017 2:17 PM

    No one was more disruptive then Lawrence Taylor

  15. RandyinRoxbury says: Feb 14, 2017 2:23 PM

    And without Belichick runnings Parcell’s defenses Parcell’s is Jeff Fisher or worst.

  16. rootpain says: Feb 14, 2017 2:25 PM

    I think most of his comments would also apply to his opinion of Jerry Jones. Good thing for Jones he has the money to buy (sorry, influence) his induction.

  17. uglydingo says: Feb 14, 2017 2:40 PM

    And Jesus spoke from the lips of Bill Parcells and suddenly there was the peace. And the hallowed kingdom of the Hall of Fame would agree to anoint TO the following year and the revered elders will unite and laud his greatness.

  18. bobthebillsfan says: Feb 14, 2017 2:47 PM

    weepingjebus says:
    Feb 14, 2017 2:06 PM
    I prefer good citizens too, but being disruptive and abrasive often goes with the terroritory of being a great football player. This is not a knitting circle. He had a long and successful career and his coaches and teammates put up with him precisely because of his talents.
    —————
    He played on 6 different teams and even played one year in the indoor football league between his 5th and 6th NFL teams. I’m not sure that is validation that his coaches and teammates put up with him. Every time he left for a new team it was like “good riddance”.

  19. unclebluck says: Feb 14, 2017 3:09 PM

    The man put up the numbers and that is all that matters. Put him in!!

  20. cowboylover says: Feb 14, 2017 3:17 PM

    As a Cowboys’ fan I take offense at the characterization of JJ buying his way into the HOF. I couldn’t care less if you hate the Cowboys or JJ for some reason you can’t articulate, but no man has done more to add great status to the game and the league.

  21. ndnation23 says: Feb 14, 2017 3:21 PM

    his stats are at the very top of the list. Pain or not, that warrants his selection. Its not like he snorted blow, or got caught with underage hookers….or any crime for that matter

  22. nsawins says: Feb 14, 2017 3:27 PM

    Fun fact: The Tuna has zero rings without Belichick coaching his defense.

  23. Ugadogs21 says: Feb 14, 2017 3:28 PM

    I can’t stand Owens but he deserves to be in. He was a disruptive, narcissistic and selfish pain in the neck. Drama followed that guy everywhere.

    However, a few of Canton’s most revered have abused drugs, women and even committed murder. If Owens can’t get in because he was a bad team mate, then maybe, just maybe the next conversation on the agenda for Canton’s gatekeepers is taking those guys out.

  24. arwiv says: Feb 14, 2017 3:28 PM

    Parcells is no Jeff Fisher. How about you give the guy the credit for recognizing the greatness of a young Bill Belichick. Who knows where Landry and Lombardi would be if HC Steve Owen had not hired them as Giants asst coaches long before anyone knew who they were.

  25. chumpley says: Feb 14, 2017 3:29 PM

    Being disruptive shouldn’t keep TO out. As an Iggles fan, I still despise him for all of his crap (pushups in the driveway, anyone?), but heck, they let racists like George Preston Marshall in, so why not TO?

  26. aarons444 says: Feb 14, 2017 3:34 PM

    And without Belichick runnings Parcell’s defenses Parcell’s is Jeff Fisher or worst.
    ===

    Let me help you with that, Roger Clemens;

    1980 Giants defense – 27th points, 24th yards

    Parcells becomes D-coordinator in 1981

    1981 Giants defense – 3rd points, 3rd yards

    The Giants were a top 10 or top 5 defense the rest of the 1980s.

    Parcells is just as responsible for that as Belichick. Sorry you misremember the facts.

  27. aarons444 says: Feb 14, 2017 3:35 PM

    I think TO and Ochocinco are in the same boat … great stats, but not great teammates.
    ===

    85 was merely a distraction. Perhaps the biggest sideshow in the League.

    I never heard anybody speak out about him being a bad teammate.

  28. thelastwordyaheard says: Feb 14, 2017 3:40 PM

    Parcells is a blowhard and the most overrated coach of all time.. we all know who the real brains were on the Giants sideline

  29. stexan says: Feb 14, 2017 3:47 PM

    He behaved himself while he was young and broke, but then “The Real TO” come out when he felt successful. He was outstanding on the field, but those antics cost his teams wins and playoff position.
    But I do think he belongs in the HOF. Maybe they should have a diva wing.

    BTW, Ochocinco did some silly stuff to get attention, but from what I remember it was all in fun. With Owens it was serious. Not the same thing at all.

  30. aarons444 says: Feb 14, 2017 3:54 PM

    No one was more disruptive then Lawrence Taylor
    ===

    Reggie White says hi.

  31. patsfan4lifesbchamps says: Feb 14, 2017 4:05 PM

    maust1013 says:
    Feb 14, 2017 2:00 PM
    theimmaculatedeception says:
    Feb 14, 2017 1:49 PM
    Until Bilichek…
    ===============

    Bilichek? You do know that Bill Belichick and Brian Billick are 2 different guys right? One of them is arguably the greatest coach of all time and the other is Brian Billick

    —————

    There are no arguments. Belichick is the GOAT coach and he runs the GOAT system. You can put a high school QB in that system and he’ll have success, that’s how great the system is.

  32. inozwetrust says: Feb 14, 2017 4:12 PM

    He belongs in the HOF by every performance measure there is. Voters who bring their own sets of morality and bigotry to the table instead of evaluating the player based on his performance on the filed are not doing their jobs and should not be entitled to a vote.

    Hate his personality and antics all you want but he belongs in the HOF

  33. inozwetrust says: Feb 14, 2017 4:14 PM

    aarons444 says:
    Feb 14, 2017 3:54 PM
    No one was more disruptive then Lawrence Taylor
    ===

    Reggie White says hi.

    Ray Lewis also says hi. The best there ever was.

  34. arun4fun7 says: Feb 14, 2017 4:31 PM

    If the ONLY qualification to get into Canton was being a good person, then there would be about 5 people in there right now!
    Unfortunately, T.O. didn’t play nice with the writers, err electors when he was in the league and this is the Kindergarten version of revenge. There are WRs who snorted coke in a hot tub w/ paid “female friends,” in the HOF, so why not T.O.? There are KNOWN wife beaters, convicted drunk drivers, and murders, or attempted murders in the HOF, so why not T.O.?
    If Jerry Rice is the only numerical candidate above you on the “all-time” lists, then you deserve to be elected!

  35. zibet says: Feb 14, 2017 4:34 PM

    TO was spoiled early on with Steve Young. It seemed like he just had that high expectation for a QB and when they didn’t meet it he got on them. Sad that he never got to play with another HOF qb the rest of his career. Where he messed up his career was not going to the Ravens instead of the Eagles. The Ravens loved guys with attitude then. They were stacked at that time outside of a WR and QB. TO was good enough then to get them the extra TD per game they needed to get to a SuperBowl. Jamal, Heap, TO, Ogden, it wouldn’t have mattered if the QB was below average with Ray Lewis, Reed, McAlister, Adalius Thomas, Kelly Gregg, Bart Scott on the other side

  36. agent7x6 says: Feb 14, 2017 5:06 PM

    Bill Parcell’s best example of TO’s disruptiveness is that he occasionally cut routes short by 3 yards??? Even with that, he was as productive on the field as virtually any receiver in history.

  37. swhy19 says: Feb 14, 2017 5:22 PM

    How much did ESPN pay Parcells for this interview? It’s known to everyone he took the Cowboys job strictly for the $$$$$.

  38. jonwill57 says: Feb 14, 2017 5:35 PM

    @ btv77 says:
    Feb 14, 2017 2:16 PM

    I don’t understand why people are crying out to defend TO. The HOF selection process has not changed since he was in the league. Through his actions he clearly decided he did not care about the HOF. Not sure if his mom told him but you can’t go around treating everyone poorly just because you can get away with it and then expect them to give you a ringing endorsement.

    #basicsocialskills
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^His mother taught him very little. In fact, she hid the fact that his dad lived across the street. Think about that…the man he knew as a neighbor was his father.

  39. RandyinRoxbury says: Feb 14, 2017 5:44 PM

    Let’s be honest, Parcell’s is one of the most overrated head coaches in NFL history, couldn’t come close to winning anything about BB.

  40. therealtrenches says: Feb 14, 2017 5:49 PM

    Parcell’s: only 1 foot from being a 1 super bowl winner AND the only coach to lose to the Buffalo Bills in the Super Bowl.

    I don’t know why people think his opinion matters so much.

  41. curtj5 says: Feb 14, 2017 5:50 PM

    Didnt the Giants recently win a Superbowl with a coach nobody liked?

  42. eyezworld says: Feb 14, 2017 5:58 PM

    HOW CAN YOU DISRUPT A BUNCH OF GROWN A** MEN . DID HE HAVE THAT MUCH POWER THAT HE COULD SWAY GROWN MEN? WAS EVERYONE SCARED OF HIM? IF ONE MAN CAN CHANGE THE LOCKER ROOM INTO A TOXIC SITUATION, THEN YOU HAD A WEEEEEAAAAAKKK LOCKER ROOM TO BEGIN WITH. ONE THING YOU CAN NEVER TAKE AWAY FROM HIM IS THE FACT THAT EVERY TEAM COULD DEPEND ON HIM TO SHOW UP IN SHAPE EVERY YEAR AND TRY TO GET TO THE ENDZONE EVERY PLAY. I WILL TAKE THAT ANY DAY. NEVER IN THE POLICE BLOTTER….(WHAT HAPPENED WITH THAT MARVIN HARRISON SHOOTING INCIDENT THAT WAS ON VIDEO?)…IT DISAPPEARED AND HE WENT INTO THE HALL OF FAME. THIS IS A POOR EXCUSE.

  43. raysfan1 says: Feb 14, 2017 6:08 PM

    patsfan4lifesbchamps says:
    Feb 14, 2017 4:05 PM

    “There are no arguments. Belichick is the GOAT coach and he runs the GOAT system. You can put a high school QB in that system and he’ll have success, that’s how great the system is.”
    _____
    1) Do you even realize that you just threw your team’s future HoF QB under the bus? If a high schooler can lead the Pats to success, then TB should be undefeated and win the Lombardi Trophy every year.

    2) Speaking of Lombardi, you do realize he has just as many NFL championships as BB? Ever hear of Paul Brown? He coached Ohio State to a #1 AP finish in 1942, won 4 AAFC championships as coach of the Cleveland Browns, then 3 NFL championships with the Browns after the merger. How about George Halas? He had 6 NFL championships, and the pro game as we know it wouldn’t even exist today without him.

    None of that says BB isn’t the “GOAT,” but acting as though nobody else even has an argument is false.

  44. snikerbotloot says: Feb 14, 2017 6:23 PM

    Utmost respect for Vic Cariucci for defending his vote. Repect his judgement but no way Vic knows more about NFL football than Parcells

  45. jonwill57 says: Feb 14, 2017 6:25 PM

    @swhy19 says:
    Feb 14, 2017 5:22 PM

    How much did ESPN pay Parcells for this interview? It’s known to everyone he took the Cowboys job strictly for the $$$$$.
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
    Is there a better reason to take a job?

  46. 4512dawg4512 says: Feb 14, 2017 6:36 PM

    9 yards instead of 12 yards, maybe the DB was playing soft on him so he cut the route short, that happens all the time and it’s up to the QB to recognize it. The disruptive stuff cracks me up, like he was the only one to ever voice an opinion. Like him or not he always told it how it was and I appreciate that. HOF committe needs to grow up and get over themselves, 2nd best WR of all time and they’re making him wait and by doing that they are just making themselves look like they don’t know what they’re doing

  47. exinsidetrader says: Feb 14, 2017 6:44 PM

    3 yards? That’s it?

    I thought football was a game of inches

  48. ibillwt says: Feb 14, 2017 6:58 PM

    Farcells should not even be allowed an opinion unless he clears it with Belichick first since he never could do anything on his own.

  49. realfootballfan says: Feb 14, 2017 7:03 PM

    Nothing disruptive like making phone calls from the Super Bowl with the Patriots to line up your next job with the Jets though, eh? We could literally do this all day with people who have excuses about him not being in.

  50. paulieorkid says: Feb 14, 2017 7:31 PM

    What a passive-aggressive puss back-handed “compliment.” Under the guise of an endorsement, Parcells feigns support — but he makes sure that (1) he unequivocally attests to T.O. being “disruptive” (the one thing keeping Owens out of the HOF); and then
    (2) Parcells says he “thinks” Owens is HOF-worthy, as if Owens’s worthiness is on the fence.

    Speaking of HOF-worthiness, Parcells never won Jack Squat without Belichick — yet Belichick won more Super Bowls than any head coach in NFL history. Anyone starting to connect the dots there?

  51. emmitt22bates40 says: Feb 14, 2017 7:54 PM

    Parcells is right that T.O. should be in the Hall. My problem with Parcells is that he quit on the Cowboys right after he built a great team just because he didn’t like T.O. He wasn’t even mature enough to call T.O. by his name, referring to him as “the player”. T.O. would probably be a super bowl champion and hall of famer right now if Parcells would’ve put his pride away and coached the team up.

  52. xxsweepthelegxx says: Feb 14, 2017 7:59 PM

    patsfan4lifesbchamps says:
    Feb 14, 2017 4:05 PM
    maust1013 says:
    Feb 14, 2017 2:00 PM
    theimmaculatedeception says:
    Feb 14, 2017 1:49 PM
    Until Bilichek…
    ===============

    Bilichek? You do know that Bill Belichick and Brian Billick are 2 different guys right? One of them is arguably the greatest coach of all time and the other is Brian Billick

    —————

    There are no arguments. Belichick is the GOAT coach and he runs the GOAT system. You can put a high school QB in that system and he’ll have success, that’s how great the system is.

    ———–

    Just lose the fake Pats moniker and choose a screen name that supports YOUR team. It’s embarrassing. It’s fooling no one. And you really should be putting forth more effort positively talking about YOUR team instead of spending years of your life on Pat’s threads.

    #sadexistence

  53. RandyinRoxbury says: Feb 14, 2017 8:12 PM

    BB is the GOAT, he’s done it in a salary cap era, no one is even a close second.

  54. kevpft says: Feb 14, 2017 9:46 PM

    davexucc says:
    Feb 14, 2017 1:57 PM

    Obviously TO has much better stats, but neither have rings for a reason.

    —————-

    You obviously didn’t watch Owens play in the Super Bowl with the Eagles, with a broken leg no less. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a player want to win more or deserve it more than in that game. He almost carried that whole team on his back to a ring that day.

  55. kevpft says: Feb 14, 2017 9:47 PM

    Will the HOF voter who knows more than Steve Young and Bill Parcells please stand up?

  56. str82dvd says: Feb 14, 2017 11:10 PM

    Dude was straight cancer. The HOF should represent the best of football, not the narcissistic aholes who destroyed their teams. Just my opinion – I don’t need to follow precedent of who was let in before.

  57. internetcommenter7 says: Feb 14, 2017 11:12 PM

    Well if the obnoxious blowhard who never won anything without bill belichick doing the work says so, it must be true. Go bloviate to someone who cares.

  58. owensdefense says: Feb 15, 2017 12:12 AM

    “He behaved himself while he was young and broke, but then “The Real TO” come out when he felt successful. He was outstanding on the field, but those antics cost his teams wins and playoff position.”

    Name a single win his “antics” cost his team.

    Laughable stupidity.

  59. tonebones says: Feb 15, 2017 12:18 AM

    Having witnessed Owens career up close, I could never vote him in. I agree with the voters. A HOF player is a great player that makes his team better. Owens doesn’t qualify. He made his teams worse.

  60. In the Weeds says: Feb 15, 2017 1:10 AM

    When did Voting For a candidate suddenly become “Voting Down” another?
    Owens wasn’t “voted down”.

  61. ogawdwhereami says: Feb 15, 2017 3:46 AM

    HOF is a joke anyway. Zero credibility at this point. Abolish it.

  62. bigdbaby says: Feb 15, 2017 9:35 AM

    If Lawrence Taylor, a crack addict and child rapist is in the HOF, why would T.O. deserve not to be in?

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