Terrell Owens: The Forgotten Talent That Is Due for Departure

Ryan CookFeatured ColumnistJanuary 21, 2010

ATLANTA - DECEMBER 27:  Terrell Owens #81 of the Buffalo Bills rushes a reverse against the Atlanta Falcons at Georgia Dome on December 27, 2009 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Amidst all the chaos that's going on in Buffalo, there is still actual talent to be found within the walls of Ralph Wilson Stadium.

No, I'm not talking about Marshawn Lynch, I'm not talking about Trent Edwards, and I'm not talking about Lee Evans either.  I'm talking about unrestricted free agent Terrell Owens.

As entitled to your opinion as you may be, you have to admit that Owens has given us some highlights throughout his career.  On and off the field, his antics and dazzling catches with the 49ers, Eagles, Cowboys, and Bills have shocked, but at the same time, amazed us all.

On a team that seems to be going nowhere with the recent signing of Chan Gailey as head coach, Owens' career is blemishing like an unwanted wart on the face of an organization that simply doesn't need the worry.

In his first underperforming year since 2005, Owens' stats plummeted.  With 829 yards and only five touchdowns to finish the season, he is beginning to face questions like "Are you too old to be playing football Terrell?" or statements such as "He's just lost the spark."

Either way you look at it, things aren't on the straight and narrow in Buffalo.  With numerous teams in the league lacking a veteran wide receiver, Owens wouldn't have a tough time signing with another team.

The first team that comes to mind is the Cleveland Browns

With the loss of Braylon Edwards in midseason, the Browns lost the go-to guy they could rely on when the going got tough (which is always in Cleveland).  With the quarterback issue looking steady for the moment, Derek Anderson would be a viable option to partner up with Owens.

Since rookie running back Chris Jennings found his legs in the Browns vs. Chiefs game, Cleveland may be a perfect fit for Owens to come in and add the missing piece to the puzzle.

Maybe Cleveland doesn't float your boat though; after all they are ranked last in passing yards in the NFL.  And if anything proves right, it's that Terrell hates being last in anything.

The second team that could be a possible fit is Washington.  Mike Shanahan is a smart guy, and believe me when I say that he will recruit talent whenever the opportunity should arise.  If Terrell happens to make the trading block and isn't taken by a more needy team, the Redskins may just come a' knocking on T.O's door.

With Antwaan Randle El and Santana Moss not delivering like they were expected to this year, T.O's arrival could not only boost the Redskins' talent, but it could also prove to be a motivator for underperforming players.

Remember the Donovan McNabb and Michael Vick combination in Philadelphia? A Moss and Owens combo in Washington could be just as deadly.

Washington's style of play is to run deep routes and slant routes on any given occasion.  If you review Owens' resume, you'll find that he is great at both.  A fit in Washington may be unlikely, but it could prove a great decision for their organization.

Looking at Owens' career, he is no stranger to a new locker room.  He's proven that Buffalo isn't the best fit for the type of player he is.  Owens thrives on a team that needs him, and a team where he is the No. 1 guy.  Although this could have been the case with the Bills, it simply wasn't.  Washington or Cleveland could do well with him, and would recognize his talent. 

Could a possible Shanahan vs. Owens argument be on the horizon of next year's NFL season?  Well, we'll have to wait and see.  One thing is for sure, though, Buffalo was a bust for T.O.

At age 36, Owens is now considered a veteran.  Gone are the days of bickering and squabbling, and new are the days of just playing football and seeing his career out.

If T.O. has any hopes of making the Hall of Fame, a new team would be necessary.  Buffalo is a rebuilding team, not a team that needs Owens.

Whether or not Chan Gailey is willing to pay Terrell Owens the sort of money that he is making now is another story, but it's time for a new home away from the East Coast.

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