- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Soon the world will be out to get Terrell Owens anew, and the diva with a persecution complex will be left to say it is everyone’s fault but his own.

This is how it is with Owens, how it always will be.

It never is easy with Owens, never simple.

He is a mass of confusion wrapped in an ego inside a puddle of denial, to paraphrase Winston Churchill.

It could end in so many apocalyptic fashions, this odd coupling starring the old-school coach and the egocentric athlete.

It could end with Drew Bledsoe, the human statue impersonating a quarterback, having a game spent mostly on his back.

This will result in Owens thinking he is not getting the ball as much as he should, and he will blow a gasket on the sidelines, barking to anyone in his vicinity on the deficiencies of Bledsoe, Bill Parcells, Jerry Jones and all those conspiring to keep down the greatest wide receiver ever.

And it will not be pretty.

And it will be up to Parcells to introduce his primitive side to Owens.

Until then, Parcells has decided to talk around the subject of Owens.

Parcells ducks, dodges and weaves in the manner of a Hollywood publicist trying to spin the questionable behavior of a client, only in this case the topic is the condition of Owens’ left hamstring that has left him on the shelf since Aug. 2.

“I know everything there is to know [with the Owens injury],” Parcells said at one point last week.

This was after he expressed the view that he did not know everything there is to know with Owens.

“Well, I don’t,” Parcells said. “That’s an honest answer.”

Asked again why he does not know everything there is to know with Owens, Parcells said, “Maybe not knowing exactly is all I’m capable of knowing at this point.”

This is Parcells as the convoluted diplomat, which promises not to last once the regular season is under way.

If this were any player but a certified head case, Parcells undoubtedly would be more adamant on the importance of a new wide receiver developing a connection with Bledsoe.

A connection to a quarterback is essential with Owens, considering his relationship with his last two quarterbacks, Jeff Garcia and Donovan McNabb.

Parcells is not normally one to coddle players, no matter how bright their star shines, as he demonstrated on occasion with Phil Simms back in their Super Bowl seasons with the Giants.

Parcells does not have a forgiving bone in his body, at least not on the football field, and Owens appears destined to receive the wrath and fury that only Parcells can deliver.

This would be the Parcells that is uncensored, unchecked, unhinged.

Parcells never has met a person he couldn’t strip to the emotional core.

He perpetually looks as if he has stepped in something foul the moment he steps onto the field.

This look becomes particularly acute if he is down a touchdown with five minutes left.

Jones, the owner whose redesigned mug suggests that he and Burt Reynolds dealt with the same surgeon, has enough hubris in him to think that the sheer force of his personality can stem the combustible personalities of Parcells and Owens.

That is the long-shot hope anyway.

The lone element working in favor of Jones is the prospect of Owens sensing he is out of chances.

If Owens squanders this opportunity with the Cowboys, it probably will go down as his last act of subversion.

Football teams can tolerate an awful lot in the pursuit of victory.

But their tolerance level dwindles as the losses accumulate, as Owens discovered in Philadelphia last season.

If Owens succumbs to one of his self-absorbed funks — and you lean that way because of the pedestrian offense favored by Parcells — both Owens and the Cowboys will be finished.

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