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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley
The Dallas Cowboys' biggest priority this offseason will be to improve locker room chemistry, and that will lead to serious discussions about Terrell Owens' future, according to team and league sources who spoke with ESPN's Ed Werder. Owner Jerry Jones has pointed to the negative impact that Owens' release would have on the club's salary cap as a major reason for keeping the receiver around. But it sounds like others at Valley Ranch, namely his son Stephen, are trying to convince Jones that releasing T.O. would be worth the financial risks.
"I think we all know that chemistry is the problem with this team more than the schemes or anything else," a Cowboys source told Werder. "Are we going to continue to allow talent to outweigh everything else in the decisions we make with players and putting the roster together? We're like the Redskins used to be when they signed every player they wanted. There's more to it than talent. It has to be more about the team. The big one [Owens] didn't get discussed yet, but I'm sure it will and real hard."
Jones has maintained over the years that team chemistry is overrated. But according to Werder's sources, Stephen Jones is trying to convince his father to part ways with the controversial wide receiver. We've been saying this is the best course of action for a while, but it's interesting that it's now coming from Valley Ranch voices.
The club is apparently worried about the effect that T.O. is having on players such as Roy Williams, Patrick Crayton and Marion Barber. T.O. certainly has leadership qualities. It's just hard to tell where he's leading everyone. From reading Werder's report, it seems like the Cowboys are placing more blame on team chemistry than offensive coordinator Jason Garrett's schemes. Lots of interesting nuggets in Werder's exclusive.
I'm starting to think that T.O.'s probably gone. I don't think the salary-cap ramifications that Jones keeps bringing up are as dire as he's making them out to be.
Digest all this and then let me know what you think in the comments section. I'll dive in there later tonight.