Monday, August 01, 2005

T.O. quietly reports to camp

Terrell Owens kept to his word and showed up on time at Eagles training camp.

Owens, who has been a no-show in minicamps, has been a master of manipulating the press in search of a new contract to replace the seven-year, $48.7 million he signed one year ago.

But on Monday, he was silent.

"Eventually he will (talk to the media); but right now, his focus is on football," said Owens' agent Drew Rosenhaus on the Eagles website. "He's all business, he's ready. That's the way he is. He's a professional, and he doesn't want to get caught up in the talk. He wants to play, and I'll take care of the rest.

"Right now, the mindset is that Terrell is here to play football and help the Eagles win a championship. He's a football player, and a great one. He'll do his job and I'll do my job.

"You never know what's going to happen in the future. But right now, he'll concentrate on the football and allow me and the team to discuss his contract.

"Time heals, time gets things done."

On Tuesday, Owens and Rosenhaus will get to make their case to the Eagles.

Inquirer staff writer Bob Brookover says that Owens "will get a chance to get some things off his chest."

The Eagles have said they are not interested in renegotiating.

The lines have been drawn, now they are just a little deeper in the sand.

Westbrook surprise

Eagles beat writer Bob Brookover is reporting that running back Brian Westbrook is a training-camp hold out.

As everyone was waiting for Terrell Owens to arrive, it was Westbrook making a statement about his contract situation.

After missing the voluntary minicamp in May, Westbrook signed a one-year tender offer for $1.43 million for the 2005 season, but a team source said that Westbrook was unhappy with the way negotiations for a new long-term deal have gone.

Westbrook is subject to a $6,000 fine for each day he misses training camp.

Fletcher Smith, Westbrook's agent, said yesterday that there was still a lot of work to be done on a contract extension for his client.

"It's no secret that it has been a tough market for running back this year," Smith said.

T.O.: Dressed for battle

Looking like he was ready to go to war, Terrell Owens arrived in Philadelphia earlier today wearing green camouflage fatigues.

Arriving on a different flight, but keeping his distance from the star receiver, was Owens' agent Drew Rosenhaus. Rosenhaus told NBC10's John Clark, "I'm here to meet with Terrell and try to figure out what we are going to do next."

Is Viagra a steroid?

In cruising the message boards on the Rafael Palmeiro situation, here are some gems:

From CCarroll99 on the ESPN baseball board: "I hope this is just a misunderstanding. Maybe it was the Viagra. Let's just wait and see."

From Coorsman2 on the ESPN baseball board: "No Hall of Fame for Raffy. He never really was a superstar player. ... Only had great stats from his great longevity, but if his great longevity came from steroids then there is no way he should make the hall."

From Roberto6 on "Jose Canseco must be happy today. He wrote in the book about giving steroids to Rafael."

From MN SCHWAB on "This response by Raphael Palmeiro aimed at damage control is sort of like the guy on Cops who have drugs in their pockets.

When the officer asks whose drugs those are, the guy always says, "I don't know."

Then the cop says, "But they were in your pants," and then crook says, "But these aren't my pants!!"

Whose pants are they Palmiero????

Whose pants indeed ??...

Steroids truths

By now you have heard that Rafael Palmeiro has been suspended by Major League Baseball for 10 days after testing positive for steroid use.

If you listen to Barry Bonds and now Rafael Palmeiro, there seems to be one truth about steroids: You can be taking them and not know it.

On a conference call this morning, Palmeiro told reporters that he never intentionally took steroids and was not sure how the illegal drugs got into his body. He suggested that the drugs may have been in a supplement that was not prescribed.

Stop it. Stop the untruths. Not another word. Please, just accept the responsibility.

But then again, as longtime baseball columnist Claire Smith points out, if you did that you could be held in contempt of Congress for lying in your testimony last March.

At the House Committee on Government Reform hearing on March 17, Palmeiro pointed his finger at the committee and said, "Let me start by telling you this, I have never used steroids. Period. I don't know how to say it anymore clearly than that. Never."

Never say never, Rafael.

Quite Frankly

Inquirer columninst Stephen A. Smith debuts his new television show "Quite Frankly" today at 6:30 p.m. on ESPN2.

Hot topic of the day Terrell Owens was scheduled to be on the debut show, but canceled on Friday. No official reason was given.

Here is a release from ESPN public relations:

"We were notified last night that Terrell Owens will likely not be a guest on Quite Frankly with Stephen A. Smith when the show premieres Monday at 6:30 p.m. (ET) on ESPN2," said Mike McQuade, senior coordinating producer. "If he is not available, the debut will shift focus to NFL player contracts and guests will include Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb and New York Giants defensive end Michael Strahan."

Don't worry, it won't all be boring contract talk. Also expected on the first show is another Philly hot topic, Sixers superstar guard Allen Iverson.

Iverson tells Stephen, "There are some mean-spirited people in Philadelphia. ...There's more love than hatred in Philadelphia for Allen Iverson."

Tune in.