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T.O. draws big cheers at Cowboys practice



OXNARD, Calif. (AP) - An hour north of Hollywood, Terrell Owens did his best Saturday to force a dramatic debut to his first training camp with the Dallas Cowboys.



He started out by being fashionably late, making sure he was the last one out of the locker room. Once he finally headed out to the practice field, his face carried an all-business look better suited for a playoff game.


Two hours later, with a mundane session coming to a close, Owens gave the fans what they came to see. Using his size and speed, he ran past cornerback Aaron Glenn, snatched a long pass and raced into the end zone, throwing the ball down in celebration.


A chant of "T.O." started immediately and grew louder at the urging of another newcomer, kicker Mike Vanderjagt. Then Owens made his way back to midfield waving his arms to keep the cheer going.


If there was still any doubt whether Cowboys fans would embrace Owens, it ended right there. As long as he catches passes and scores touchdowns, they'll love him as much as anyone who has ever worn a star on his helmet - regardless of what he once did to the star logo on their home field.


"They're excited for me to be here and I'm equally excited for me to be here," Owens said. "I got it every day in Philadelphia, fans chanting my name each and every day, so I expect that."


Problem is, many people are expecting a lot of other things happened in Philadelphia, such as the confrontations with teammates and coaches that led to an ugly departure. Bracing for them might a better way of describing it.


But Owens, his new teammates and coach Bill Parcells all insist he comes to Dallas with a clean slate. Sure, they know the baggage he carries - "You'd have to be living in a closet to not know some of the things," Parcells said - but they're vowing to judge him only on what they see.


And so far, they like what they've seen.


"He's so physical, so fast," raved quarterback Drew Bledsoe, whose relationship with Owens will be scrutinized as much as Owens-Parcells. "The thing that's probably most impressive is what he does after he catches the ball. He turns up the field like he's trying to score every time he touches it. That's paid off huge for him. He's led the league in yardage after catch, and hopefully that will be the case this year."


It might be too early to start talking about statistical goals since it remains to be seen how Parcells will use Owens. It has often been said that he shouldn't expect to catch 100 passes, but the truth is he's only hit that mark once in his career.


Owens said his only statistical goals are to have "a lot" of receptions and touchdowns. He later said fantasy football team owners should pick him because "if you want touchdowns, if you want somebody to be up there at the top of the leaderboard, then I guess I'm your man."


He seemed to be going for a laugh with those lines. With a more serious tone, he talked about wanting to fit in.


"Bill kind of strives on that running game. I'm behind that 100 percent," he said. "We're going to feed off each other. Some games, the running game is going to be where it needs to be and sometimes the passing is not. And sometimes it's going to be vice-a-versa."


Owens had a brief chat with Parcells, then another with Bledsoe during the first workout. Everyone was full of smiles.


Asked about the conversation with Parcells, Owens said the coach told him, "We're going to have some fun."


Owens knows he's not going to always have such pleasant exchanges with his new coach. That seems to be OK with him.


"I know Bill's the kind of guy that's going to test guys, so to speak," Owens said. "I'm kind of like a couple steps ahead of him in that department. If he gets onto me, I know it's for the good of the team. So I welcome that. ... As long as I'm doing my job, we'll have no problems."





"Not at all," he said. "I think everybody's speculating, they're kind of waiting for that to happen. So you guys keep waiting."


Parcells insists he's not thinking about when or if Owens will have another tantrum.


"We're going to treat him with respect and see what happens," Parcells said. "Coach him. Correct him. Try to put him in positions to make plays. OK? Make him part of the team. Make him part of the offense. That's what we're going to try to do. ... If it works, it works. If it doesn't work, it doesn't work."





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The fact everybody is expecting him to explode...will mean he won't.


I expect T.O. to be successful in Dallas.


I also expect the division champions to be successful against T.O. and the rest of the Cowboys. :TU:

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  • 4 weeks later...

The T.O. hamstring saga continues


T.O. likely to miss 3rd straight preseason game


Associated Press

Posted: 58 minutes ago




IRVING, Texas (AP) - Terrell Owens reaggravated his left hamstring injury when he returned to practice last week for the Dallas Cowboys and almost certainly will miss his third straight preseason game.


"It's frustrating, but it's not where I need it to be to play and perform like I need to," Owens said Wednesday. "So at this point, I'm going to be smart about it."


Asked if he could play if this was the regular season, Owens said, "I doubt it, not the way I need to play."


After missing 14 consecutive training camp practices and the preseason opener in Seattle because of the hamstring problem that has bothered him all month, Owens returned for five practices last week. He missed the final full workout in Oxnard, Calif., last weekend and didn't play Monday night against New Orleans in Shreveport, La., after the hamstring tightened up on him.


Owens was back on the field last Wednesday after Cowboys owner Jerry Jones suggested that the receiver needed to learn how to practice at less than 100 percent. His first practice back came only hours after coach Bill Parcells reiterated that Owens needed to be on the field.


"I felt like I was never pressured to get back on the field. I just tried to compromise with some people, just try to be around the team and get back out there," Owens said. "It just flared up again."


Owens first felt a twinge in his hamstring Aug. 2, but an MRI taken three days later was clear. Owens said another MRI taken this week was also negative, with only a little fluid in the hamstring.


"Just because the MRI doesn't show anything, that doesn't mean that I'm not hurting," Owens said.


The Cowboys play their first home preseason game Saturday night against San Francisco, Owens' original team. They play their final preseason game five nights later.


It's possible that Owens might not play in a game for Dallas until the Sept. 10 season opener at Jacksonville. He hasn't played in a game with quarterback Drew Bledsoe, and the Dallas offense is different from the West Coast scheme Owens played in for the 49ers and Philadelphia.


"He is pretty much up on what to do," Parcells said. "He has been very attentive in meetings and trying to learn. There are some adjustments for him to make. Where he is and actually doing it is hard to tell."


is he faking it and if so why? does he want to get rich just riding the pine ? if he keeps this up he will be gone before next year.

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