Plenty of people have taken up the case for receiver Terrell Owens getting in to the Hall of Fame. But that doesn’t mean Owens shouldn’t defend himself.
Taking a page from a certain politician who has elevated tweeting to an art form, T.O. has been using the popular social media platform to push back on the narratives that have been used by those who seem to believe that Ruthian numbers should be undermined by vague, amorphous, and incomplete accounts of conduct occurring from the edge of the field to the exit to the parking lot.
Scroll through his Twitter page. There are plenty of nuggets from Owens that reflect his frustration with the effort to justify ignoring one of the greatest all-time careers for any receiver in NFL history. Most recently, Owens engaged Jason Cole of Bleacher Report in a back and forth in which Owens correctly pointed out that he never “held out” in Philadelphia, and that his effort to be traded or cut when the team flatly refused to reward him after the 2004 season “was business.”
“Was I or am I the only one to do that?” Owens asks. “Didn’t Eli Manning get drafted to Chargers? What did he do? #checkmate.”
As the debate continued, Owens said to Cole: “Whatever u try to accuse me of there r plenty of examples well before me. U better stop before someone gets ur job.”
That continues to be the biggest problem with this loophole that allows Hall of Fame voters to consider off-field issues that manifest themselves in the locker room, on the practice facility, or anywhere else inside the perimeter of the property. It becomes impossible to do a fair comparison between Owens and others who have been enshrined without the same scrutiny that Owens experienced.
Regardless, Owens isn’t a close case for Canton. He’s a no-brainer, slam-dunk Hall of Famer. And those who are resisting can either continue to hide under the bed (with the exception of Vic Carucci) or they can stand up, own their vote, and explain their case. Maybe, just maybe, the process of talking it out will cause them to realize that maybe, just maybe, they were wrong to exclude him.