Terrell Owens apologized to football fans today if any of his past actions were seen as annoying, self-serving or simply lame and unfunny.
"It took me seeing it in someone else up close, day after day after day, to realize how awful it is," Owens said. "So, please, if in any way I acted like [Chad] Ochocinco in the past, I sincerely apologize. I would have hated me, too."
Owens said he was initially excited to sign with the Bengals, because it extended his NFL career and let him play with a receiver he considered to be very similar to him in Ochocinco. But after a week of training camp that excitement faded.
"Day 1 was awesome. Chad was hilarious," said Owens. "By Day 3 I found myself fake laughing more often and not. And at the end of the first week it was all I could do to not roll my eyes or just yell: 'SHUT THE FK UP!'"
Owens has tried to avoid Ochocinco as much as possible of late, saying he has an appointment or that he has to use the bathroom if his teammate approaches him.
"That's what the other guys on the team told me to do, because that's what they do," said Owens. "They say trying to avoid Chad brings them together and that it has for years."
So far the plan has worked, although Owens is worried Ochocinco is starting to get suspicious.
"I know I started getting suspicious when my Cowboys teammates had appointments all the time," he said. "I was worried Tony Romo had cancer or something. Now I know he just found me really annoying. And I can't blame him."
Tommy John isn't the only athlete with a surgery named after him.
Here are a few others.
To this kid's credit, he refused to be tackled. Even though that would have been the way to go.
What's annoying about mascots is that they're adored for doing obnoxious things that would otherwise get an un-costumed person beat up. Their small language capacities and gargantuan heads perpetuate the age-old stereotype that they're mentally retarded, which, despicably, is the reason why folks find them so entertaining. Yet some mascots, in addition to being obnoxious, are entirely irrelevant to the city or team they represent.
#1 Southpaw of the Chicago White Sox
The NFL season is still weeks away, but it seems awfully close to Tennessee Titans punter Brett Kern.
"You can never be completely ready as a punter," said Kern. "There's just too much to it, what with having to kick the ball both far and high. And then sometimes the coach says he wants you to kick it shorter so it doesn't go in the end zone. I probably lost you already with all the technical jargon, huh?"
Kern says for a position like his, six weeks of training camp is not even remotely enough time to get ready for game-speed competition, so that's why he has been putting in long hours of practice honing various techniques.
"Mainly I have been punting," he said. "A lot, though. Like, I just punt all the time. All day with the punting. I'm trying to come up with other things I could do to help me with punting, but all I can think of is more punting."
The Titans open the regular with two home games at LP Field which Kern calls a "punter's stadium" but then they travel to the Meadowlands to play the Giants in Week 3.
"There you could punt into wind," he said. "Or with the wind. Or there could be a cross-wind. It's basically a punter's nightmare. But that's why we get paid the big bucks at least big bucks for someone who only kicks things for a living."
The president today announced plans to send 30,000 National Guard troops to the hotly-contested border between the offense and defense in preparation for what is suspected to be an increase in violence along the line of scrimmage this fall.
"Each day livelihoods are lost, knees are blown out, yards per carry averages are destroyed along our nation's lines of scrimmage," said White House spokesman Robert Gibbs. "It was imperative that the president step in and take action."
There is a long history of conflict along the line of scrimmage dating back to the mid-1800s. But the conflict has escalated in recent years as both sides mass larger and stronger players along the line. Perhaps most terrifying: the growth of children serving in youth forces or "teams".
"This is calculated violence playing out on our television screens every week," said vice president Joe Biden. "We can no longer pretend it's not happening. This administration promised to take on the issues and we are."
The National Guard troops will be instructed to prevent teams from moving beyond their currently established positions, a move that will prevent violence but also end scoring.
"There is no perfect solution," said Gibbs. "Once we calm tensions we will take a look at allowing certain players to advance beyond the line of scrimmage."
The Guard has also been instructed to call penalties on all players with Mexican ancestry.
Our reporter spent the day at Washington Redskins training camp in Ashburn, Virginia. Here are his notes.