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INQUIRER : Owens' days as an Eagle are over


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Posted on Mon, Nov. 07, 2005

By Jeff McLane



Wide receiver Terrell Owens will not play for the Eagles again this season, head coach Andy Reid announced today during his day-after-the game news conference.

Reid said that Owens has been suspended for four games - starting with yesterday's 17-10 loss to the Washington Redskins - for conduct detrimental to the team. The four games are the maximum amount of time that a player can be suspended for such conduct, according to the collective bargaining agreement between the NFL and its players union.

After Owens serves his four games, he will not play for the team for the remainder of the year, Reid said.

"I do want to be clear," Reid told reporters, "that this decision was a result of a large number of situations that accumulated over a long period of time in which Terrell had been warned repeatedly about the consequences of his actions.

"Even with the activities that took place last week, we gave Terrell every opportunity to avoid this outcome."

Owens was in his Moorestown home this afternoon, but did not emerge to speak to reporters outside. "We have no comment at this time," said Owens' publicist Kim Etheredge who was with him at his house.

On Thursday, Owens criticized quarterback Donovan McNabb and the Eagles organization to an ESPN.com reporter. The previous day, he and former Eagles defensive end Hugh Douglas got into a fight in the locker room at the Eagles practice facility, the NovaCare Complex.

Reid didn't answer any questions that specifically addressed the Owens situation. The league has been notified by the players union that it will file a grievance on behalf of Owens for this action.

"Therefore, there is nothing more that I can say at this point," Reid said.

Owens has been angry with the Eagles since management refused to redo his contract just one season into the seven-year, $48.97 million deal he signed when he came to Philadelphia in March 2004.

This was the second time Owens has been suspended during his controversial 10-year career. In 2000, he was suspended one game by San Francisco coach Steve Mariucci following his infamous touchdown celebrations on the Dallas Cowboys' famed star logo at the center of Texas Stadium.

Owens clashed with management this summer and earned a one-week exile from training camp after a heated dispute with Reid that followed a clash with offensive coordinator Brad Childress.

Owens forced a trade to the Eagles last year after eight seasons with the 49ers. He had 77 catches for 1,200 yards and 14 TDs in 14 games, helping the Eagles to a 13-1 start.

The bad blood between Owens and McNabb apparently began after Owens went down with a severely sprained ankle and broken leg in Week 15 against Dallas. Owens was upset that McNabb and other players said the Eagles could reach the Super Bowl without him, which they did.

Soon after Philadelphia lost to the Patriots, Owens took his first shot at McNabb, suggesting the five-time Pro Bowl quarterback was tired in the fourth quarter of the loss.

McNabb responded harshly and the two didn't speak for a prolonged period in training camp. They eventually reconciled their relationship and performed well together on the field - Owens has 47 catches for 763 yards and six TDs this season.

However, Owens continued to throw verbal jabs at McNabb during his weekly radio show or whenever he granted interviews.

The Associated Press and Inquirer suburban staff writer Keith Pompey contributed to this report.

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