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Goodbye, T.O.?

With a torn ACL, is this the end of the line for the WR? Matt Bowen

Print This June 28, 2011, 05:30 AM EST

Here is the problem with the Terrell Owens discussion right now: time.

Move past the scheduled rehab that many players have gone through (including myself) after blowing out an ACL and focus on the expected production.

Terrell OwensICONWill we see Terrell Owens producing in the NFL again?

Because it is that production—or lack thereof—that might signal the end of a great run for T.O. in the NFL.

I have no doubt that Owens can work through rehab, get back his flexibility in the knee, focus on his strengthening and then finally translate to drills on the field. That is a part of the process for getting a knee back to game speed in the training room.

However, it takes one full year of consistent daily maintenance—plus functional football movements—until we see the explosion and burst that was visible before the knee was torn.

A full year until you see that same player back on the game tape again. And that doesn’t sell for a free agent WR that will be 38-years old this season.

There is no question that T.O. would have been picked up once the lockout was lifted from my perspective. He doesn’t have the top tier speed of the some of the NFL’s elite at the position anymore, but we were still looking at a player that was very productive in 2009 and can run the inside breaking routes (slant, dig, post) that are essential to any offense.

But now? The start of the season is out of the question. T.O. will still be in rehab by then. And even when he can work out for NFL teams and run routes in front of GMs and head coaches, do you really know what you are getting?

I will always give the benefit of the doubt to an NFL player when it comes to an injury. They are trained to deal with adversity and work—extremely hard—during the rehab process to find a way back to the football field.

But with Owens I just don’t see it happening.  His age and the amount of actual time it takes to play at a high level again after an ACL surgery are working against him. Maybe someone does give him a look late in the season, but by then, I am going to have to pass and look at younger options.

And we could be looking at the end for a player that was a big time player at the wide receiver position.

Follow me on Twitter: MattBowen41

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