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T.O. has 'no regrets' about Cowboys tenure

8/14/2014

OXNARD, Calif. -- More than five years after the Dallas Cowboys cut him, Terrell Owens returned to the River Ridge practice fields Thursday afternoon.

Owens, the receiver whose three-season stint with the Cowboys was remarkably productive and controversial, watched from the sideline and chatted with some Cowboys staffers, a handful of players, head coach Jason Garrett and Jerry Jones.

It was his first conversation with the Cowboys' owner and general manager since Jones used a tablecloth to illustrate to Owens that his days in Dallas were done months after the 2008 season. Any bitterness about the breakup seems to have subsided for Owens.

"Hey, it is what it is,"Owens said. "I can't really say too much about that. I know when I played and I practiced, I came with 100 percent. I played with 100 percent. I have no regrets.”

The Cowboys essentially cut Owens because his relationships with quarterback Tony Romo and then-offensive coordinator Garrett had deteriorated to the point of being dysfunctional.

But Owens, who had 3,587 receiving yards and 38 touchdowns during his three seasons in Dallas, said he has fond memories of that chapter of his career.

"Absolutely," Owens said. "Like I said, getting the opportunity Jerry gave me coming over from Philly. I played three years here and had some great times, made the most of it, I feel like.”

At 40, Owens has four-percent body fat and still looks the part of a Pro Bowl receiver. He hasn't officially retired despite not getting a call from a team since the Seattle Seahawks cut him during the 2012 season.

Asked if he could still play, Owens responded with an incredulous look and a laugh.

"Absolutely," said Owens, who caught 72 passes for 983 yards and nine touchdowns for the Cincinnati Bengals in 2010, his last season in the NFL. "What kind of question is that? I worked out this morning. Looking good. Always looking to do something.

"You know, it's all in God's hands. You've just got to have the faith of a mustard seed and anything can happen. I haven't ruled it out. I haven't retired. I've kept myself in good enough shape to go in and help somebody if need be, but right now I'm in LA, doing some acting stuff, doing some business stuff.”

At some point, Owens expects to be in Canton, Ohio, giving a Hall of Fame induction speech.

His history of burning bridges with quarterbacks and coaches could make for an interesting discussion among the Hall of Fame voters. Based purely on production, he'd be a first-ballot lock.

"I'm not really tripping on it, to be honest,"said Owens, who ranks second in NFL history in receiving yards (15,934) and third in touchdown catches (153). "I already know that. If it happens, it happens. I know there are a lot of components to getting in the Hall of fame. Your peers. The media has a hand in that. That has never been my concern.

"I feel what I have done on the field speaks for itself. I think my numbers speak volumes.”