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A rumor came out the other day that the Dallas Cowboys secretly covet LB Ray Lewis and would be willing to lock him up to a three year, $28M-$30M deal, with $25M of it being guaranteed. According to team owner Jerry Jones, Lewis would be a strong presence in the locker room which would help re-build team chemistry.
First off, let’s hope Lewis thinks with his head (and not his wallet).
Lewis, a sure-fire first ballot Hall of Famer, should remain a Raven until the day he retires.
I don’t think Baltimore Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome would commit that kind of money to a 35-year old player. But I do suggest Newsome would offer some key incentives to lure Lewis to stay.
Secondly, the only way you’ll have team chemistry once again in Dallas is through addition by subtraction—releasing the cancer known as Terrell Owens.
The pairing of Lewis and Owens nearly happened before. In 2004, the Niners traded the troubled receiver to the Baltimore Ravens, but the deal was vetoed after T.O. cried to the NFL league office.
And why was there anything to cry over?
Because Owens’ agent somehow missed the deadline to fill out the free agency papers, so he was technically still under contract with San Francisco. So the Baltimore deal was ripped up and he got his wish to go to Philadelphia.
Well that love affair lasted one season until he completely imploded, created a personal rift with McNabb, and brought the entire ‘05 Eagles’ team down with his selfish antics.
So he went to Dallas in ‘06.
He fit right in with Jerry Jones’ belief that the Cowboys can rehabilitate anyone.
And aside from a few personality conflicts between Owens and Parcells - and I’m sure the Tuna was none too happy about the acquisition, once Romo took over after week 7 of the 2006 season, he was a happy camper.
And that transferred over until this year when he took his me-first attitude to a new level. In the past, whenever the Cowboys lost, he always used the “when the ball is thrown to me, good things happen” argument.
And against the likes of San Francisco, the team they played directly after he made those comments again, he put up over 200 yards and people thought he was right.
But shortly after the week 14 Steelers loss, a new kind of complaining began; he called out Romo and said that he looks to Witten too often. Perhaps, he hasn’t taken note of how difficult it is for defenses to match-up against the All-Pro TE.
And after the Cowboys were annihilated by the Eagles, 44-6, in week 17, T.O. even took some shots at offensive coordinator Jason Garrett.
So if Jones thinks that bringing in Lewis without removing Owens would solve team chemistry, he might need to have his head checked out. No one has ever been able to control Owens.
That’s why T.O., easily one of the top five receivers to ever play in the NFL, has been shipped out of two cities already and is close to getting the pink slip in the third.
Lewis would certainly be an asset to an already stout Dallas’ D, but even the most talented team in the league can’t overcome a personality like Owens. I believe that was proven this year by none other than Dallas.
Sure there were other issues affecting the team (Romo’s injury), but they still had a shot for the playoffs when he (Romo) returned. And both the Eagles and Cardinals proved that all you need to do is get in.
So stick in Baltimore, Ray.
Jones is desperate to sell tickets and luxury boxes for the new stadium this year and wants his fans to believe that this is a Super Bowl team, but until T.O. is shipped to the Canadian Football League, there will be no Super Bowl in Big D.
There will only be internal bickering and fighting that’s bad for football, but great for ratings on HBO’s award winning “Hard Knocks” series.