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    When Pro Football Hall of Fame voters meet the day before the Super Bowl to choose the Class of 2018 Vinny Curry Color Rush Jersey , the decision to select Terrell Owens should take less time than it does to microwave a bag of popcorn.

    T.O. belongs in Canton. It’s a no-brainer.

    Owens is second to Jerry Rice in all-time receiving yards and third in touchdown catches behind Rice and Randy Moss, a finalist in his first year of eligibility.

    No. 81 was a five-time All-Pro, six-time Pro Bowl pick and of the most entertaining players of his generation.

    Owens deserved first-ballot induction. Case closed. Yet, he’s been snubbed twice because voters are punishing him for his off-field and locker room ”antics” during a sensational 15-year career.

    But there is no ”character clause” for the Pro Football Hall of Fame – and that’s not saying Owens should fail it.

    Owens was never arrested nor suspended by the NFL. He didn’t have legal issues or drug problems.

    Still, he’s been kept out because of questionable behavior and the perception he was a malcontent.

    Sure, Owens often spoke his mind and sometimes got under the skin of teammates and coaches. He threw some of his quarterbacks – Jeff Garcia, Donovan McNabb and Tony Romo – under a rapidly moving bus. He also defended Romo from criticism and famously cried once while doing it.

    Owens should be judged for his value on the field. He made every one of the five teams he played for better. He wasn’t the perfect teammate and he was disruptive at times, but when he stepped on the field, he was exceptional and durable.

    Owens only missed 12 games in his long career Jonathan Allen Color Rush Jersey , plus the nine he didn’t play in 2005 after Andy Reid kicked him off the Philadelphia Eagles following a nasty feud with McNabb and a dispute with management over a new contract.

    That came only several months after Owens helped McNabb have his best season, then heroically returned from ankle surgery – against doctor’s orders – to play in the Super Bowl. Owens would’ve been MVP of that game against the New England Patriots if McNabb didn’t throw three interceptions in the 24-21 loss.

    Anyone who covered the T.O. circus in Philadelphia and the aftermath knows Owens wasn’t solely to blame for the way things went down. McNabb was overly sensitive and didn’t like all the attention Owens received. McNabb was booed by Eagles fans at the 1999 draft and he never forgot it. The same fans embraced Owens from the second he arrived in Philadelphia after eight seasons in San Francisco. More than 20,000 people went to see his first practice of 2004 training camp at Lehigh University. That led to jealousy issues with McNabb that final escalated a year later.

    After things got ugly in Philly, the locker room was divided between McNabb supporters and Owens supporters. If the mess was entirely Owens’ fault, some of the well-respected veterans who sided with him wouldn’t have done so.

    But it was easier for Reid to dismiss a 32-year-old receiver who wanted more money than a 28-year-old franchise quarterback who never ruffled any feathers.

    Owens ended up in Dallas and had three excellent seasons with the Cowboys before he wore out his welcome. He played one year in Buffalo and one more in Cincinnati.

    Those who argue that Owens bounced around the league because teams couldn’t wait to get rid of him should consider that Rice played for three clubs, and Hall of Fame receiver James Lofton also played for five. Lofton is on the 48-member selection committee and voted for Owens last year.

    This really shouldn’t be a difficult decision. It certainly doesn’t compare to the steroid dilemma Major League Baseball Hall of Fame voters face each year.

    Terrell Owens is one of the greatest players in the history of the sport and earned the right to receive a gold jacket.

    When he finally puts one on, getcha popcorn ready because it’ll be the most must-see induction speech ever.

    SAN FRANCISCO — One hot pitcher and one who hopes he’s heating up go head-to-head Wednesday night when the Colorado Rockies and San Francisco Giants continue their three-game series.

    The Giants outlasted the Rockies in a pitchers’ duel in the opener Tuesday night, with a bases-loaded walk plating the winning run in the eighth, one inning after starters Derek Holland and Chad Bettis had exited a 1-1 game.

    San Francisco Geron Christian Color Rush Jersey , seeking a fourth straight win, will send Madison Bumgarner (1-2, 3.20 ERA) to the mound Wednesday.

    The four-time All-Star recorded his first win of the season in his last start, rewarded for pitching eight shutout innings against the San Diego Padres on Thursday.

    Bumgarner has made 26 career starts against the Rockies, going 12-7 with a 3.05 ERA.

    He will be seeking to continue a stretch of brilliant pitching by the Giants, who have given up three or fewer runs in nine of their last 12 games.

    The starting staff has performed so well, Giants manager Bruce Bochy admitted he’s not sure what the team’s going to do when injured rotation regulars Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija are deemed healthy enough to return.

    That day is expected soon, especially with Samardzija, who has already made three injury-rehab appearances in the minors.

    “I think you look at the way the rotation has been throwing the ball Troy Apke Color Rush Jersey , it’s not going to be easy,” Bochy said of who, if anybody, gets displaced. “But we knew this would be coming when Jeff’s ready and Johnny’s ready.”

    A matchup with the Rockies means Bumgarner will have to deal with hot-hitting Nolan Arenado, but it’s been Carlos Gonzalez who has given the Giants’ lefty the most trouble over the years.

    Gonzalez has five career homers against Bumgarner, the most anybody’s hit against the San Francisco ace.

    Arenado has two career homers against Bumgarner.

    The Giants not only will have to deal with Gonzalez and Arenado, but also with impressive Rockies left-hander Kyle Freeland (7-6, 3.55), who already has beaten San Francisco twice this season.

    Facing the Giants twice in a 12-day stretch in May Michael Gallup Color Rush Jersey , Freeland allowed them four runs and 13 hits in 12 innings in 6-1 and 11-4 wins.

    The 25-year-old has gone 2-1 in June after a 4-1 May that included the two wins over the Giants.

    Freeland has started six times in his career against the Giants, going 4-2 with a 3.15 ERA.

    He’s 1-1 with a 3.55 ERA in two career starts in San Francisco.

    Freeland can expect to see Hunter Pence in the Giants’ lineup Wednesday.

    Pence has been relegated to part-time duties when not injured this season, but has come through big-time in his last two starts and has a history against Freeland.

    Pence collected two hits and two RBIs in a 6-5 win over Miami last Wednesday, then had a double and two more RBIs in a 3-2 victory over the San Diego Padres on Sunday.

    Pence has faced Freeland eight times in his career, going 4-for-7 with a walk.

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