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Nov. 23, 2005

Posted: Wednesday November 23, 2005 3:15PM; Updated: Wednesday November 23, 2005 3:15PM
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Want to argue about the NFL? Let's go ...

Don't Read Into Eagles' 'Victory'

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

The arbitrator's decision to uphold Terrell Owens' suspension is being portrayed as a flat-out victory for the Eagles. What exactly do they win? A top-15 draft pick. The knowledge they were right and Owens was wrong. The relief of not watching him score touchdowns for another team.

All those are fine -- and not seeing him in another uniform is huge -- but this is the NFL, where nothing is as important as winning and losing. If the Eagles think their moral victory and newfound peace in the locker room will make losing to divisional rivals any easier, they're wrong.

From a public relations standpoint, Philly is lucky the Owens case took so long to be decided. If the decision was made a few weeks ago, or if Donovan McNabb hadn't thrown that ball to Dallas' Roy Williams, the team would be in the thick of the playoff race and there might have been a public groundswell to bring back Owens.

But now that McNabb is having season-ending surgery, the Owens story becomes more about principles than any reality on the field. The Eagles may have won, but the truth is, they lost a while ago. So did T.O. So did Drew Rosenhaus.

The real winners? New York, Washington and Dallas.
-- Andrew Perloff (3:20 p.m.)

It's a moral victory, yes. But the Eagles are done for the year. I'm a realist and I do realize they are way under the cap and can make a splash in the free agent market. Good riddance.
-- Raz , Philadelphia (3:33 p.m.)

I can't believe T.O. talked himself out of a job. He really played himself. And Drew Rosenhaus? Speechless.
-- Gerald Parnell , Philadelphia (3:34 p.m.)

Should Rosenhaus chip in for the Owens relief fund? After all, his plan didn't exactly work out.
-- Brian , Philadelphia (3:35 p.m.)

To most Eagles fans, this season is already over. The franchise quarterback is hurt, there is no running game, and a high-profile defense is underperforming. Beating TO has become the new objective of the Philly fan, and at least in that regard, this development represents victory.
-- Jared Russell , Ambler, Pa. (3:35 p.m.)

They may lose in the short run, this year, but that was going to happen anyway with McNabb's nagging injury. The Eagles have won in the past without Owens and they'll win in the future. Eagles fans just don't want him back, period. Whether it's the difference between them making the playoffs and missing the playoffs, whether it's the difference between them beating the Giants and not beating the Giants. Part of caring about a team is is having respect for its players and its personality and frankly, to me, that's way more important than winning and losing for a single season.
-- Chris Newcomb , New York (3:37 p.m.)

T.O loses grievance, so the rest of selfish players in any team sport. This is a shout out of team spirit over individualism. The only regret, Eagle should have deal this problem a long time ago. It sure did cost more than they could imagine ... so, they did pay a huge price. Any way, this case was beyond T.O and Eagle.
-- Jamal , Canada (3:40 p.m.)

This is a victory for the game of football, not the business of football. Since the sport has been overrun by egos with cash, the sport has taking a beating. The truth of the matter is tha game is played on the field and not in the boardroom. The teams that have endured this ideal last. New York Giants, Pittsburgh Steelers, Dallas Cowboys (prior to Jerry) do know that.
-- Milzie , East Greenbush, N.Y. (3:40 p.m.)

The Eagles made the mistake of hiring him. Sometimes people have to pay for their mistakes. Wouldn't it be wonderful if all the other teams learned from the Eagles' mistake so that Owens finally has to really pay for his?
-- Don , Austin, Texas (3:41 p.m.)

I can't believe the amount of money Owens will end up losing in this deal. I can't see how a team will offer him more than a one year deal.
-- Paul Macaluso , Longview, Texas (3:42 p.m.)

You said it! I can't understand how every broadcaster can sound off on T.O. To me, the real idiots are the Bradshaws, Schlereths, Wingos, Johnsons, Longs,ect. They are the "idiots." Oh yeah, thanks Eagles, although T.O. got the short end of the stick, it could not be any sweeter for a Redskins fan!
-- Tyler Todd , St. George, Utah (3:43 p.m.)

You need a comment from somebody who's not from Pennsylvania. So here's one from San Francisco: Told you so.
-- J. Hughes , San Francisco (3:43 p.m.)

I agree that all three parties come out on the short end of the stick. However it is Rosenhaus who is the real loser. The Eagles will be able to move on, even if unsuccessfully this season. Next season, some team will take a chance on Owens and his baggage because of his skill. Rosenhaus on the other hand has looked bad both publically and professionally. He came in, was unable to get Owens more money, supported his antics as he got himself suspended and finally, made himself look like a fool as he refused to answer question after question in an attempt to defend his client on national television. Drew, you're a fool!
-- Herb Greene , Wiscasset, Maine (3:48 p.m.)

Thank god RIGHT prevailed! While TO is a tremendously talented athlete, and the Eagles held 'all the cards(according to Jimmy Johnson)', I believe that the correct decision was made. Athletes SHOULD be held accountable for their actions and when they misbehave, the penalties are pretty much already known and should be enforced. As a life long Cowboys fan and HUGE Jimmy Johnson fan, I can only hope the other JJ can resist the temptation for TOs talent and NOT sign him(ever).
-- Herb Greene , Columbus, Ohio (3:55 p.m.)

The real winner is everyone! Philly because they show all the other futur FA's that they play as a team and no ONE player is more important than the EAGLES. T.O. because he comes out a better person whether he realizes it or not. No one has ever told him "NO", he always had his way based soley on his immense talent. He is in sort a "spoiled brat". Eventually with enuff hand spakes he will grow up. Drew the SuperAgent because he to now realizes that NOT everyone can be pushed around and there is actually a limit to what an agent can pull as stunts go! and finally the NFL because the system works! Even if the arbitrator was a Redskins season ticket holder.
-- Gary Massicotte , Chambly, Quebec (3:55 p.m.)

The real winner is everyone! Philly because they show all the other futur FA's that they play as a team and no ONE player is more important than the EAGLES. T.O. because he comes out a better person whether he realizes it or not. No one has ever told him "NO", he always had his way based soley on his immense talent. He is in sort a "spoiled brat". Eventually with enuff hand spakes he will grow up. Drew the SuperAgent because he to now realizes that NOT everyone can be pushed around and there is actually a limit to what an agent can pull as stunts go! and finally the NFL because the system works! Even if the arbitrator was a Redskins season ticket holder.
-- Gary Massicotte , Chambly, Quebec (3:59 p.m.)

I agree with you. The NFL is a business. Terrell forgot this and so did the Eagles. Pride without a team for him and win for them is wasted.
-- Crys , Philadelphia (4:03 p.m.)

Yes, the Eagles are done this year anyway, but here's what it means: If a player wants to sabatoge a team because he doesn't like his contract, he faces repercussions. A ruling otherwise would have set an awful precedent.
-- Jim Palmieri , King of Prussia, Pa. (4:11 p.m.)

The Eagles are to blame equally as TO for this fiasco. Why didn't the Eagles handle this in-house? Looks to me that Andy Reid takes these things way too personally.
-- Sridhar , Chicago (4:13 p.m.)

Life has a way of humbling all of us. T.O. just got a dose of that.
-- Tim , Hamond, La. (4:14 p.m.)

Life has a way of humbling all of us. T.O. just got a dose of that.
-- Tim , Hamond, La. (4:14 p.m.)

If the Eagles organization keep handeling there affairs the way they handeled T.O. and others, they will never see another Super Bowl. I hope the Eagles and the fans are happy because the T.O. situation will be the only victory they will see for a while. And T.O. gets to stay home and cash his free checks.
-- Dee , West Chester, PA (4:24 p.m.)

This is a very unfortunate circumstance. Terrel Owens caused most of this mess by thinking about himself. If TO was more of a team player he would still be playing. If the abritators decision had been different it would have sent a message that the players run the team and not management. That in itself would have created a huge mess. The Eagles are justified in this ruling. TO brought this upon himself and for that I have no pity for the man. But in these circumstances, nobody wins. checks.
-- Todd , Garden City, Mo. (4:26 p.m.)

Why do people forget that the Eagles went to three straight NFC Championship games without T.O. They also won last year's NFC Championship game without him. Time for Andy reid to go back to basics and stick to character team guys.
-- Frank Devcich , Calgary (4:30 p.m.)

I am satisfied that Owens disrupted the Eagles long enough for the Cowboys to take 2 games from them. The Boys had closed the gap and came away with two victories mainly because of one selfish player. The only hope Owens has is to fire Rosenhaus and ask 31 teams to forget about his off the field antics and trust his football skills. He is a great football player, but awful teammate.
-- StB , Milwaukee (4:33 p.m.)

The Eagles put themselves in a no-win situation from the beginning. They know the character T.O. is and were for-warned what would happen by SF. They thought they were untouchable and they paid. This is a win for all fans of NFC fans, not the Eagles. I just hope he doesn't end up in Dallas.
-- Tucker , Scranton (4:34 p.m.)

This isn't just a moral victory for the Eagles, it's a moral victory for pro football. Who here didn't want to shut T.O. and Rosenhaus up? If this decision were reversed, undoubtedly more would've pulled this same stunt to get out of an unhappy situation. A great victory for team sports.
-- Jason , Milwaukee (4:35 p.m.)

This isn't just a moral victory for the Eagles, it's a moral victory for pro football. Who here didn't want to shut T.O. and Rosenhaus up? If this decision were reversed, undoubtedly more would've pulled this same stunt to get out of an unhappy situation. A great victory for team sports.
-- Jason , Milwaukee (4:35 p.m.)

Say what you will about winning, but this decision proves there's more to football than just the cutthroat idea of win, win win. In the bigger picture, this is good for the Eagles and the NFL. And it's wakeup for bloodthirsty agents who think they can do whatever they please for their own personal gain. Hopefully, we've seen the end of the Rosenhaus "style" of negotiating.
-- Mike Schwab , Milwaukee (4:38 p.m.)

The things that I value in watching sports are the same things I valued in playing them. It really isn't just about winning, because nobody wins all the time. Leadership, integrity and character are the things that I look to sports to show me, and one day my kids. If I want them to subscribe to the "win at any cost, money is king" way of thinking, I'll have them follow the stock market, and read the Wall Street Journal. Thrive under adversity, never give up, cheaters only cheat themselves, lose with dignity and win with class. Just the tip of the iceberg, guys. Owens should be paid the league minimum until he learns these things every Pop Warner player is taught.
-- Bob Meyler , Hollywood, Fla. (4:39 p.m.)

I like that it sets a precedence for future malcontents. At this point, it doesn't matter much to Philly, who are out of the race for the playoffs. Dallas and New York are the elite of the NFC East, and will continue to be as Eli improves and T.O. is playing in Dallas next year next to Keyshawn. Who would have thought? Keyshawn has settled down, and maybe T.O. will too.
-- Chris , Atlanta (4:44 p.m.)

A moral victory in this case is worth more than winning a game. This is a huge statement to all of the players who think they are bigger than the game....you're not !!!
-- D. Bruce Sciotto , Philadelphia (4:46 p.m.)

I hope that Mr. Owens and Rosenhaus are somewhat deflated as a result of their aberrant behavior. Yes, there are people willing to accept a losing season rather than being held hostage by egomaniacs--names listed above!
-- Mike , New Orleans (4:49 p.m.)

The arbitrator was dead on in his ruling. The Eagles and the rest of professional sports will be better off for this. I don't care if having T.O. back meant winning the Super Bowl. Right is right.
-- Mark , Philadelphia (4:52 p.m.)

I don't understand the way people are sticking up for T.O. He is a spoiled, arrogant, mentally ill individual with no class and whines like a baby. Why would you want a disruptiv, embarrassment to play for you? Talent is NOT everything, you gotta have respect, and Terrell Owens has given the eagles none since his arrival. How can you write this drivel that you wrote today?
-- John , Hartsville, Pa. (4:55 p.m.)

Owens' is only hurting himself. His reputation was given a second chance by the Eagles and he blew it. Football is a profession like anything else and this guy has a sketchy resume that will be picked from the bottom. Only a desperate team will take him, as the Eagles were. Hey Owens! Aren't you 30-something now? Terrific athlete but he's about to see his prime in a rear-view mirror.
-- Brad , Canada (4:58 p.m.)

The only thing Phila won was a long vacation because the won't be in the playoffs. I want W's on the card, he's the most talented player the eagles have seen. Deal with his crap, you knew what you were getting yourselves into. Yeah, they got a locker room distraction, but they also got TD's in the bank. Good luck now.
-- Jonathan Keephart , Trenton, N.J. (5:01 p.m.)

Thank god it is finally over. Terrell Owens was one of the greatest receivers of the last 30 years, but given his absolute idiocy, self-important, narcissism, me-me-me bull (redundant, I know). I could not care less if I ever see that loser catch another ball in the NFL. Think about it ... to be the best receiver in the league and yet be such an ass that you get dumped from your team, well, you must be one big ass.
-- Lou Rom , New York (5:05 p.m.)

Can we finally quit writing about this "story" and start talking about the actual game of football?
-- Adam , San Francisco (5:07 p.m.)

Regardless of the impact of Owens on the field as a player, this was always about principles, and if principles go out the window just because a player is talented, then we all lose. The Eagles are big winners here, because they didn't lose their principles, regardless of the talent of the player!
-- Andrig T. Miller , Louisville, Colo. (5:08 p.m.)

I disagree with Mr. Perloff. We're all winners. Winning and losing is not always the most important thing. Acting like a true professional and honoring a signed contract is important. This should set a fine example, especially to kids, that doing the right thing is most important.
-- Ken Bryant , Burtonsville, Md. (5:10 p.m.)

The failed experiment is over. Let's move on. It's time for the Eagles to reload and start another run next season. This time, stick to the script when choosing players. Character guys who play good football. "Dance with girl you came with."
-- Sean , Logan Twp, N.J. (5:14 p.m.)

T.O. kiss all that money goodbye because it's going to take a substantial amount of "attitude" overahaul to come close to getting such a deal from any team in the future.
-- Lou , Los Angeles (5:17 p.m.)

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