T.O., Romo, the coach and the case of the good footballs

All smiles here. T.O. mustve gotten the good footballs.

All smiles here. T.O. must've gotten the good footballs.

Sunday’s column from The Sanford Herald:


It’s another wild day at Dallas Cowboys’ football practice. Coach Wade Phillips sits in his office thinking about watching some game film of the New York Giants. But first he has to figure out if he’s going to wear the Michelin Man jacket again on Sunday night.

Head Trainer: “Coach Phillips, we have a problem.”

Phillips (frantically shuffling a GORE-TEX catalog into his desk): “What now?”

Trainer: “Well, it seems the guys are a little upset.”

Phillips: “Why would they be upset? We’ve won eight games already.”

Trainer: “Um, right. But, well, uh, the receivers just got out of a meeting with head coach… uh, I mean, Offensive Coordinator Jason Garrett.”

Phillips: “Why is that a big deal?”

Trainer: “‘Cause they aren’t happy with Tony. And T.O.’s with them.”

Phillips: “T.O.?”

Trainer: “Yes, you know, Terrell Owens.”

Phillips: “I know who he is, thank you.”

Trainer: “Just checking.”

Phillips: “So what seems to be the problem?”

Trainer: “Something about the footballs. That there’s not enough of them to go around.”

Phillips: “Get them in here right now. And I mean now!”

Trainer: “Yes sir.”

The trainer heads over to a cluster of receivers, among them Owens, Roy Williams and Patrick Crayton. Crayton, standing in front of Owens, who seems to be whispering to him, is finishing up an anonymous interview with an ESPN reporter.

After 45 more minutes of texting, getting massage treatments and a couple of quick naps, the receivers show up in Phillips’ office.

Phillips: “What’s this I hear about the footballs?”

Owens: “Why don’t you ask your quarterback?”

Phillips: “What’s that supposed to mean?”

Owens (mumbling): “Nothing. But I bet his boy knows.”

Phillips: “His boy?”

Owens: “Whatever.”

Phillips: “Start talking, Terrell.”

Owens: “T.O., Coach. You know you call me T.O. Do I have to call Jerry again?”

Phillips (a nervous smile on his face): “Hold on now. C’mon. Why don’t we start over? What can I do for you guys?”

Owens: “It’s like this: by the time I — I mean, we — get out to the field every day, you know, after I see the trainer and work out and lift a little and run and get the pedicure and everything, they’re already out there. And they got all the balls, man.”

Phillips: “All the balls? What? Who?”

Owens: “Romo and Witten. Working on these routes and stuff. Like the tight end is so important. Run this way. Go that way. If this happens, come this way. And they’re using the good balls. We’re left with the ones even the kickers won’t use.”

Phillips: “T.O., what happened to the balls we gave you at the beginning of the season? We gave you more than anybody else on the team.”

Owens: “Not that many more.”

Phillips: “We gave you 10 bags of brand new balls. Put them in your locker. Remember? You carried them out to your car after practice. And then we gave you 10 more bags of new ones a few weeks ago when you complained the other time.”

Owens: “Yeah, I remember. So?”

Phillips: “So this shouldn’t be a problem. You’re getting more balls than anybody.”

Owens: “That’s not the point.”

Phillips (mumbling): “Maybe you dropped them.”

Owens: “You say something?”

Phillips: “Nothing.”

Owens: “Look, I see those two all the time on the field. They’re thick as thieves, they are. Talking all the time. Drawing up routes. Going on vacation together. And then once we get in the game, Tony looks for him all the time when I’m open. And now they keep getting all the good footballs before we get out there. Good balls in practice. Good balls in warmups. Good balls after practice when they hang around after everybody leaves.”

Phillips: “Unbelievable. You two — you got anything to say?”

Crayton: “Nah.”

Williams: “Man, I just got here. We didn’t even have footballs in Detroit.”

Phillips: “It shows.”

Williams: “I know.”

Phillips (sighing): “So, T.O., what do we need to do to fix this?”

Owens: “I need more balls. Remember when I got more balls before the San Francisco game?”

Phillips: “Those were the 10 extra bags I was talking about.”

Owens: “Yeah. Blew up for 213 yards and we won big. We play well when I get my balls.”

Phillips: “OK, OK, I’ll get you more balls.”

Owens: “You’ll talk to Tony?”

Phillips: “What for? You get more balls, then he and Jason can do what they want with theirs, right? What’s the big deal?”

Owens: “Well, I gotta give a couple of them to the guys on defense. They like the good balls, too.”

Phillips: “What do they care?”

Owens: “I talk to them about it all the time.”

Phillips: “You talk to them? About this?”

Owens: “About everything.”

There’s a knock at the door. It opens and defensive back Terence Newman is in the doorway.

Newman: “Coach, when you got a minute, I’d like to talk to you about something. Oh hey, T.O. Got any more balls yet?”

Phillips: “I’ll see you in the defense meeting, Terence.”

Newman: “So you’ll get T.O. his balls, right? ‘Cause, you know, we seem to play better when he’s got more than anybody else, and well, you know how Tony and Jason are.”

Phillips: “OK, that’s enough. Terence, I’ll talk to you later. T.O., guys, we’ll get you more balls, OK? I’ll call Jerry.”

Owens: “Way ahead of you, Coach. He already said he’d get me some. Glad we could have this talk, though.”

Phillips: “Um, yeah. OK. Well, I’ll see you guys at practice then?”

Owens: “After pilates, yeah. You’ll talk to Tony, then? Tell him to stay away from my footballs?”

Phillips: “Yeah, I’ll talk to him.”

Owens: “And Witten?”

Phillips: “I’ll talk to him, too.”

Owens: “Great. Who are we playing this week, Coach?”


Filed under Dallas Cowboys, Designated Hitter, NFL, Sports, Sports columns, Terrell Owens, The Sanford Herald, Tony Romo

2 responses to “T.O., Romo, the coach and the case of the good footballs

  1. Pingback: Tony Romo takes homeless man to the movies « Alex Podlogar

  2. Avy Smith

    The Cowboys are going to do well.. Till the time players like Romo hang around, they still give Dallas the hope of making it to the playoffs and perhaps even winning the Super Bowl…Visit http://www.sportsviews.com/ and watch all the games played by the Cowboys so far!!

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