Lies the Media Told About Terrell Owens

They lied about Owens accusing Mariucci of throwing the game against the Bears in 2001 because of his friendship with Dick Jauron. Here’s what Owens actually said.

They lied about Owens hinting at a quarterback change from Garcia to Rattay. In actuality, Owens gave a diplomatic answer when he was asked about that possibility.

They lied about Owens’s outburst on the sidelines against the Vikings in 2003 being newsworthy for any reason other than the fact that he was one of their villains. Let Troy Aikman tell you. Let Mike Martz tell you. Let the archives mentioning various players caught on camera doing the same thing tell you. Let this reaction to Jerry Rice (contrasted from Terrell Owens) tell you.

They lied about Owens calling “his quarterback,” Jeff Garcia, gay in an interview with Playboy. The interview in question was in the summer of 2004, when Garcia was on the Browns and Owens was on the Eagles. They were not teammates anymore at the time of this interview. Moreover, as noted in this article, Owens clarified the day after it hit the press that he wasn’t saying Garcia was gay and didn’t know whether Garcia was gay or not.

They lied about Owens accusing Donovan McNabb of getting tired/throwing up in the Super Bowl. That was Hank Fraley and Freddie Mitchell (and Jon Runyan). Owens only made a reference to this story (without mentioning McNabb by name) in an interview with ESPN.coms Len Pasquarelli, when he was taking a shot at the media for criticizing him before the Super Bowl for trying to play, saying his physical conditioning wouldn’t be up to par (which is what Pasquarelli was asking him about). He was pointing out the irony of the fact that after questioning Owens’s physical conditioning, they were now talking about how it was another player who got tired.

They lied about the context of Owens saying the Eagles would be better off with Brett Favre than Donovan McNabb at quarterback, failing to mention he was answering a follow up question (regarding a claim made by Michael Irvin about Favre in place of McNabb) after he had just said that the Eagles would be better off if McNabb weren’t playing injured.

They lied about Owens “destroying” the Eagles in 2005. The Eagles were 4-3 with Owens on the team, and 2-7 without. Now, to any logical person, that proves Owens wasn’t the problem. Oh, but wait. The media being what it is, they use this to try to prove that Owens “destroyed” the Eagles, because he “destroyed” their locker room. But what do you think would have happened had the Eagles been successful after Owens was suspended? Oh, I think I know. Call it a hunch, but I think they would have said, “the fact that the Eagles won after suspending Terrell Owens tells you everything you need to know.” And so the circular logic that we have proof that Terrell Owens is the problem because we know that Terrell Owens is the problem is in tact. And of course, they want you to forget the fact that Donovan McNabb was playing injured and would have season ending surgery 2 weeks after Owens was suspended. You know why? Because that fact isn’t good for their “T.O. destroyed the 2005 Eagles” narrative.

They lied about Terrell Owens accusing Tony Romo and Jason Witten of drawing up secret plays, when Owens never said that – that was Ed Werder citing an anonymous source “who speaks regularly with Owens’s teammates” (hint: the media speaks regularly with Owens’s teammates; Werder was citing a member of the media talking out his ass…perhaps he was even citing himself) and they lied about the meeting with the team’s offensive coordinator being newsworthy for any reason other than the fact that it was one of their villains who was doing it.

They lied about the 49ers being among the teams who “couldn’t wait to get rid of Terrell Owens.” The 49ers discussed extending Owens’s contract before the 2003 season (which was his 8th season with the team) and couldn’t come to terms. Then, experiencing salary cap problems, they gutted their whole roster in the 2004 off-season, cutting Garcia, Garrison Hearst, Derrick Deese, and Ron Stone, and letting Tai Streets and Jed Weaver leave uncontested via free agency (in total, 7 offensive starters departed that off-season). Meanwhile, they had been expecting Owens to leave via free agency, only for Owens’s agent to miss the new deadline to file the paperwork. Unable to afford Owens’s contract (and with Owens seeking to leave), they traded him to the Ravens for a 2nd round pick (which was later undone after Owens filed a grievance and the Eagles, 49ers, and Ravens worked out a 3 team settlement).

They lied about the Eagles getting rid of Owens for “locker room problems.” In actuality, Andy Reid told Owens he could remain on the team and not be suspended so long as he apologized publicly to the organization for criticizing them for not acknowledging his 100th touchdown reception, privately to Donovan McNabb for the out-of-context quote played on ESPN in the Graham Bensinger interview, and privately to the team for that same interview. It was only when he refused that Andy Reid moved to suspend and deactivate him, citing insubordination. This, of course, was also in the context of a contract dispute, and players don’t last long on the Eagles in those situations, anyway. Ask Duce Staley. Ask Jeremiah Trotter. Ask Sheldon Brown. Ask Corey Simon.

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