Terrell Owens would hurt Jets more than he could help
Bob GlauberBob Glauber
Glauber has been Newsday's national football columnist since 1992. He
As the Jets' offense lurched from one ineffective drive to the next in Monday night's 23-17 loss to the Texans, Terrell Owens took to Twitter to offer his help.
"Hey JETS!!!," Owens wrote on his account, "I'm available! I'm ready, willing & able! Call my agent @jordanwoy & let's make it happen."
Owens hasn't played in an NFL game since the 2010 regular season, and he was released during the 2012 preseason by the Seattle Seahawks. But there surely are enough Jets fans out there hungry for something positive to happen on offense that the idea of signing Owens makes sense.
Coach Rex Ryan, asked about it during Tuesday's conference call with reporters, didn't dismiss the idea out of hand, although he hinted that the Jets planned to stick with what they have. Even if that doesn't seem like much.
"You never say never, [I'll] investigate all options," Ryan said. Later in the day, however, a source familiar with the Jets' situation said the team would not be calling Owens.
Which is a good thing, because a 38-year-old diva receiver with a history of trashing his quarterbacks is the last thing this team needs right now. Besides, with rookie speedster Stephen Hill and veteran tight end Dustin Keller likely back for Sunday's game against the Colts, bringing in Owens is the wrong way to go.
Look, if Ryan was unwilling to bring back Plaxico Burress, who had eight touchdowns for the Jets last year, what makes you think he'd bring in a player who last caught a pass for the Bengals two years ago? Owens has been begging teams for a chance to play ever since, and the best he could do was earn a temporary spot on the Seahawks' training camp roster. But a problem with dropped passes, something that has hampered him throughout his career, and concerns about his locker room demeanor prompted the Seahawks to release him and stick with former Jets receiver Braylon Edwards.
Now that's a guy the Jets could have used this year. Edwards had a good run with the Jets in 2009-10, and he proved to be a capable receiver for Mark Sanchez. He asked for way too much money in 2011, overestimated his value on the free-agent market, and wound up signing with the 49ers. He was injured much of last season, then was released by San Francisco and joined the Seahawks this season.
T.O. are still two of the most recognizable initials in pro sports, but the athlete himself does not measure up to the on-field reputation. Owens once was the most dominant receiver of his era, but he no longer is physically capable of that greatness. If he were, he'd be with a team making a pile of money. And, in all likelihood, making a nuisance of himself the way he did during his controversial stops in San Francisco, Philadelphia and Dallas.
The Jets could sure use a playmaking receiver in the absence of the injured Santonio Holmes, but Owens is not the right fit. Nor is Burress or Chad Johnson, another aging receiver whose reputation is bigger than his ability. Better to go with Jeremy Kerley, who looks like he's becoming a decent receiver, and Hill, who already has shown some skill in the early going before tweaking his hamstring. The idea is to get younger and faster, not older and slower.
Owens has been a toxic presence in almost every locker room he's been a part of. No need to add the Jets to that list.