With all the talk about Terrell Owens and whether he’ll be in a Cowboys uniform next year, the subject of whether or not we can sustain a potent passing game without him has been raised. It’s something that nobody has the answers on, but it makes me wonder, why don’t we?
What is it about Roy Williams that says he can’t handle the load without T.O. across the field? Perhaps the best argument against him is that he played for the Lions until last year, and I know this because I’ve seen it written in so many places, and by so many people. The popular opinion is that he sucks because he was with the Lions.
People like to throw out there that he’s only had one season over 1,000 yards, but what I don’t understand is why the same amount of logic isn’t placed on both sides of the discussion.
He played for the Lions … when is the last time the Lions did anything notable in their passing game? Even I had Mike Furrey on my fantasy team a couple of years ago, but that was also the same year in which Williams got his 1,000 yards, so something was obviously working better that year.
So he comes to Dallas, narrowly escaping a full claim to the worst season in NFL history, and he catches 19 passes for a couple hundred yards. The truth is that Williams, while he caught fewer passes than he could have, was only about 3 yards per catch behind Owens. That means that had our offense not collapsed from mid-season on, he could have ended up with more yards than Owens. Sure, it’s not likely since Owens is the number one wide out, but it’s possible that he could have without him doing anything different.
That has to make you wonder something, how can we be facing such trouble without Owens when Williams was producing at a similar level per catch? Now watch that, I said per catch. A lot went into why Williams had fewer catches, some of it was his fault, some of it wasn’t, so we can’t really make claim to the cause in either direction.
What we do know is, even after Jerry Jones so cryptically told the attending reporters at his press conference yesterday that they weren’t going to get the answer they wanted, that even if he does cut Owens loose, he wasn’t the only guy producing.
T.O. was the only player at a skill position playing in every game of the season.
T.O. did have a blow out game against his former team, nearly breaking his own career record for yards in a game.
None of that says that this team won’t produce over the top should he be gone in 7 months. And to say that we need to pick up another receiver either through the draft or free agency is just idiotic. Why would the Cowboys risk bringing in another player as a project from the draft when we still have Stanback, Austin, and Hurd who have yet to progress past that same status?
Why would we bring in another free agent receiver when we’ve got Williams not playing up to his ability last season; Owens the center of a bigger fuss than Bill Clinton, and the other free agent wide outs we’ve brought in during this decade that have quite literally flopped?
A lot of what’s being said centers around the attention that Owens gets, some off the field, and some on the field. Can this team be any good without Owens occupying double coverage? Well, tell me this, how did Michael Irvin do it all those years? He was never the fastest receiver; he was just a go-up-and-grab-it type of guy. For all accounts, Williams is that type of guy also, he’s just never had a QB worth $60 million throwing it to him.
Give it an off-season, a full training camp and preseason, and you’ll see that Owens is going to get more competition from his right than from the defensive backs facing him.