Bad Ideas: Would You Want Terrell Owens on the Steelers?

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I caught a small portion of the Vinnie and Cook show on 93.7 The Fan today — which is more than I usually catch, thankfully — and Vinnie was talking briefly about whether or not the Steelers would (or should) consider looking at once-great wide receiver, now free-agent troublemaker Terrell Owens.

Because if there’s one thing the Steelers need more of right now, it’s another sideshow that is known more for his off-field antics than his on-field production.

The discussion was sparked after a guest appearance from Buffalo News football writer Allen Wilson, who felt the Steelers would be a good fit for the soon-to-be 37-year-old Owens. Naturally, Vinnie started talking about how the Steelers are already behind the eight-ball this offseason and need to consider all possible options, no matter how nonsensical they might be (my words, not his), when it comes to getting out from behind said eight-ball.

The pro’s and con’s of Terrell Owens in Black and Gold.

Pro: Moving right along…

Con: At the risk of sounding like everyone’s least-favorite screaming voice on ESPN — Skip Bayless — Terrell Owens is poison. Some might say it’s his reputation, but this is not a reputation. This is fact. He has worn out his welcome in each and every city he’s ever played in — and in the case of Baltimore, a city he never actually played in. And each time he’s seemingly worn out his welcome faster than he did during the previous stop.

Con: As a football player, he’s a shell of his former self. This is not the Terrell Owens that tortured opposing secondaries with the 49ers, Eagles and Cowboys. This is a wide receiver that will turn 37 in December and has seen his production decline in each of the past three seasons. He is no longer an elite player.

Con: The Steelers have their own distractions to worry about without willingly bringing in another one.

Con: Even after the Santono Holmes-to-New York giveaway, and the season-ending injury to Limas Sweed, the Steelers are still set at the wide receiver position. Hines Ward is still playing at a high level (and he’s actually two-and-a-half years younger than Owens) while Mike Wallace appears ready to become a very good starter, and perhaps more. Heath Hiller, while not a receiver, is one of the best pass-catching tight ends in the NFL, and Antwaan Randle El is back in the mix as the No. 3 slot man. Even though his return game is now nonexistent, he still has a great set of hands.

Then there’s also the additions of rookies Emannuelle Sanders and Antonio Brown who will be competing for playing time.

Bottom line: As unlikely as it might be, it’s a terrible idea and suggestion.

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  • RoB D

    Agreed. I really like Brown and Sanders and feel that we need some youth injected into our receiving corps and these two kids have talent and the right attitude. Character matters more than ever in pro sports. TO is a horrid teammate and a washed up “talent”.

  • JB

    Only if he can play second banana on a Casey Hampton dating show as he currently does for Chad Ochocinco . . .

  • JB

    Jokes aside, since '04 his only truly stellar year was his first year in Dallas, and he turns into a cancer after that first year with pretty much every team he joins. I guess I wouldn't be too broken up if they signed a guy to a 1-year deal, as generally I'm not too bullish on rookie receivers (see: Sweed, Limas, and Gibson, Fred) nor am I sold on Randle El after having talked to a bunch of knowledgable Redskins fans recently. Beyond a year and I'd be pretty unhappy.

  • Bill

    No way should the Steelers ever take TO. He gives a team the same kind of negative publicity Ben does. He's washed up and most teams can defend him now. He talks a lot more than he produces. I think he's going to have to take a pay cut if he wants to play this year. Most teams have a tight end they can rely on. The Steeler are better off with Heath and they would be with Terrel. The Steeler organization knows better than to take terrel. He's burned to many bridges.