Hornswaggler | The culture, the humor, a bit of the sports, not so much the politics, and the workplace distraction

Hornswaggle is an alternate spelling of hornswoggle, an archaic word that means to bamboozle or hoodwink. I take my pronunciation from the late Harvey Korman in "Blazing Saddles" --

"I want rustlers, cutthroats, murderers, bounty hunters, desperados, mugs, pugs, thugs, nitwits, halfwits, dimwits, vipers, snipers, conmen, Indian agents, Mexican bandits, muggers, buggerers, bushwhackers, hornswagglers, horse thieves, bull dykes, train robbers, bank robbers, ass kickers, shit kickers and Methodists!"

Culture, Humor, Sports
Workplace Distraction

Friday, August 12, 2005

Guess what? More sports

I have a piece on the Eagles that's up on the front page right now at Salon, about how the TO nightmare is not the Eagles biggest problem as far as getting to and winning a Super Bowl. Yo, check it ouuut.

As for Terrell Owens, he is a disturbed person, and his agent Drew Rosenhaus is sitting next to him encouraging his continued unraveling. Doing push-ups and biceps curls in his driveway with helicopters circling overhead? Yes, Terrell. You have a great physique. But that doesn't make up for your character flaws.

Some commentators are saying the Eagles are still hoping that TO can come in next week and the air will be cleared somehow and everything will be patched up. But there is no chance of that happening, because Owens is not going to kiss and make up unless his contract demands are met. And especially in light of his bizarre and antagonistic behavior this week, there is no chance the Eagles will commit a) pay him more this year, in essence giving into a player who has publicly dissed the organization, his quarterback and on and on and on or b) commit any money to him for the coming season, when they can't even decide if they can stand having him around for another week.

The only way I thought this could have been resolved was for the Eagles to give Owens and Rosenhaus private assurances that the Eagles would find a way to guarantee some of his money beyond this year, because Owens' main gripe appears to have been that the Eagles would cut him after this year, denying him the $8 million or so he's due. Either the Eagles never hinted at such assurances or Owens is just a jackass, because his acting out has precluded any arrangement along the above lines.

Owens 7-year, $49 million contract was not below market. The $3.5 million he was making this year was. But that's how contracts are structured. In order to give Owens a huge bonus last year up front, the Eagles needed the second year of the contract to be smaller. Next year it goes back up, meaning he would have averaged around $7 million in his first 3 years. Since NFL contracts are not guaranteed, Owens was afraid the Eagles would cut him. The irony is that the Birds would have had no reason to do that before he went fully cuckoo for Coco Puffs.

So unless the Eagles rework his contract, which will now absolutely never happen, Owens won't change his attitude. And if he doesn't change his attitude, the Eagles won't keep him around. So what does that leave? Trading him seems highly unlikely. Who the hell is going to want him right now? Cutting him would give Owens what he wants, freedom, and hurt the Eagles' salary cap figures. The clear move seems to me that they'll do what the Bucs did with Keyshawn Johnson, which is send Owens away from the team and pay him the $3 million for the season (not sure why there's a differnece salary cap-wise between cutting him and sitting him).

Which means that Owens has shot himself not in the foot, but in his stupid ass. He's 31, he's coming off the first major injury of his career, and he's on a team that was the clear Super Bowl favorite until he went berserk. So now he's going to miss a season in the prime of his career, miss probably his only legitimate shot at winning a Super Bowl and most likely wind up making less money in the process. Way to go, TO. Is that how you do things in a "profesional setting"?

.: posted by hornswaggler 10:17 AM

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