T.O.: Bitter Past, Sweeter Future?
Charity might not be first thing most people associate with Terrell Owens. If anything, his career has been more about receiving than giving, so it may be surprising that the Alzheimer's Association is honoring him for his philanthropic work.
But fighting the disease is personal for Owens. His grandmother has Alzheimer's, and for over a decade, the Buffalo Bills' wide receiver has been using his notoriety to raise awareness about it. On Wednesday night, he will be honored as recipient of the National Alzheimer's Association Young Champions Award at the National Building Museum in Washington.
In a recent interview, Owens said he was honored to be included on the list of notable people who are "dedicated to increasing awareness" about Alzheimer's. And for those who "come into a situation where they are dealing with it," Owens said he wants "to help them cope with the problem and be more aware of the signs and how to deal with it. ... Whatever I can do to advance that."
Owens also talked about football. He spoke optimistically about joining a new team.
"Given the parity in the NFL," Owens said, there's "no reason the Buffalo Bills can't be like the Giants two years ago or the Cardinals last year."
Owens shrugs off concerns about playing in a cold-weather city. Despite his poor production when the thermometer drops below freezing, he said, "everyone plays in cold weather. I'm going to embrace it and Buffalo, and I hope they embrace me."
Reflecting on his departure from the Dallas Cowboys, Owens admitted he's still "trying to get over the initial shock" of the sudden release.
"It's tough, when you play there for like two years," he said. "You go into the last year of the contract, and you just signed an extension, you know, and you feel like you're going to end your career there. It was a situation where I was like, 'Wow, what happened?' "
Owens did not single out Cowboys owner Jerry Jones for blame. He said he feels "a couple of people" influenced Jones to make the decision.
"It's like you have that bond and when it's broken, you're left out in the middle of the field," Owens said. "Luckily, Buffalo threw me a lifeline."
Despite past disappointments, he said he is looking forward to the future in Buffalo -- or Toronto, should the team move there.
"It doesn't matter what uniform I put on, I'm gonna do what I do, score touchdowns," Owens said.
And in case you're wondering, the self-proclaimed "Number 1-A all-time receiver" says he's hasn't planned any new end zone celebrations yet.
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