Terrell Owens: Fake Retirement Prank Was a Work of Promotional Brilliance

Ryan MichaelSenior Writer IIIOctober 9, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 03:  NFL wide receiver Terrell Owens looks on during Game One of the 2010 NBA Finals between the Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on June 3, 2010 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement  (Photo by Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)
Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images

When future Hall of Fame Wide Receiver Terrell Owens was recently interviewed by ESPN's Stephen A. Smith, his very believable (and entertaining) retirement prank was bound to be subjected to unreasonable criticism by members of the media who have made it a regular tradition to await any opportunity to knock the NFL's greatest entertainer.

It makes headlines; thus has always been the nature of the "T.O. phenomenon..


Surrounded by members of his family, Owens said "I want to call it quits, I want to retire."

He's a better actor than most give him credit for.

The prank didn't last long as shortly after he said that "I wish today was April 1, you know, it would be April Fools because I just got you, because I'm not retiring."

Never mind the fact that Stephen A. Smith responded by saying "That's a good one. I'm not mad at you, I'm not mad at you at all."

Biased members of the media jumped at the opportunity to label Owens' prank in poor taste as most continue to fail to see the brilliance behind what has always been one of T.O.'s greatest assets.

The man's an entertainer, and damn good one.

During a season that has been without the league's active leaders in both passing and receiving (Peyton Manning and Terrell Owens, respectively), a little bit of positive promotion was a great move on Owens' part to stimulate a bit of fan-related interest.

His fans will be eager to see the return of one of the greatest players in NFL history; while his detractors will continue to sit back in the hopes of seeing him fail.

Love him or hate him, the entertainment aspect of his game continues to promote the sport and will continue to help both ticket sales and television ratings.

You could knock him all you want, it's never made a difference in his game; only the false perception of his character.

1,078 receptions later...

15,934 receiving yards later...

153 touchdown receptions later...

And there's still more production left in the tank for this legend.


Ryan Michael is a Senior Writer for Bleacher Report.

Professional inquiries can be directed to his email: bleacherreporter@yahoo.com

Follow him on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/#!/theryanmichael

Big thanks to Terrell Owens himself for posting a link to this article on his Twitter profile!

Follow T.O. on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/#!/terrellowens