Both Sides of the Coin: Fame vs. the Numbers

Coverin' The SpreadCorrespondent IJuly 27, 2010

It’s impossible to turn on the TV or check twitter without reading or hearing about the recent uniting of Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco, or as they like to put it—Batman and Robin.

It has certainly made for great discussion for the talking heads on ESPN, talk radio, blog-o-sphere and twitterverse.

Why wouldn’t it be?

You have the two loudest receivers of the past decade, who also happen to be two of the best. Both have television shows on VH1, “The T.O. Show and “The Ultimate Catch.” Both have been known to callout teammates, make for emotional and entertaining interviews, and both are very active on the celebrities favorite social network, twitter.

Man, I can’t wait to watch them play together. Great personalities and they are two of the top receivers in the league.

Well, not so much.

They were two of the best receivers in the league of the past decade, emphasis on past.

When you look at the other side of the coin—the numbers—you begin to realize this situation is great for pre-season discussion and entertainment, but I’m afraid that’s where it stops. When you examine the numbers or actual production, this doesn’t make business sense.

Let’s begin with the better of the two, the younger 32-year-old Ochocinco. Last season he was 26th in receptions behind names like Brent Celek of Philadelphia and Davon Bess of Miami. His yardage wasn’t much better at 20th overall, and he only made the top-10 in one major category, touchdowns, and he was tied with a few others at number 10.

Now to the 36-year-old T.Old, as Skip Bayless likes to put it. He didn’t even crack the top 30 in any major category. He was 48th in receptions, 33rd in yards, and 39th in touchdown’s. Not to mention, he has seen his numbers slide for the past four years. That has to be embarrassing for the front office of Cincinnati.

The same front office who has already addressed the glaring problem of 2009—more receivers.

The Bengals acquired Antonio Bryant from the Buccaneers and used three of their nine selections in the 2010 draft to take receivers. Two of their top three were tight ends from Oklahoma Jermain Gresham and wide reciever from Texas Jordan Shipley. They went on to select previously hyped Dezmon Briscoe of Kansas in the 6th round, who saw his stock fall only because of injuries. The Adam Shefters of the world were giving them praise for an impressive offseason.

But apparently a good offseason wasn’t enough. The front office was persuaded by three of the most important figureheads in the Bengals organization: their quarterback, number one receiver and head coach. Well Palmer, Ochocinco and Lewis are all putting their reputations on the line for this likely failed marriage.

I think Skip Bayless said it best on twitter on Monday by responding to Chad’s tweet about calling himself Robin and T.O. Batman. Skip so eloquently said:

RealSkipBayless @OGO choCinco : If you’re Robin, T.Old is Alfred.