‘It’s terribly sad’ — Carmen Policy tells the story behind Terrell Owens’ HOF snub

49ers ex-official details the story behind T.O.’s Canton controversy

Karl Buscheck
July 31, 2018 - 1:09 pm

Terrell Owens won’t be in Canton this weekend as the new class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame is inducted. The enigmatic wide receiver is the first NFL player to snub the honor.

It’s been a polarizing move and on Monday Carmen Policy, a top Niners exec when T.O. arrived in San Francisco in 1996, offered up a powerfully candid assessment of the situation.

“I thought how sad. How very, very sad and I felt very bad for Terrell. And I talked to him after he was notified that he was going to be inducted. And the player I talked to was humble and he was just upbeat about the the honor and talked about the early days at the 49ers. And he had talked to Eddie DeBartolo (Jr.) and he said, ‘I miss you guys.’ and you know this, that, and so forth.”

“We tried giving him some advice to just, ‘Get some advice on how to handle this honor. Take it easy, don’t make quick decisions, and, moderate your comments.’”

“Again, we were rooting for him. The problem is, with all the talent, with all the ability, with the drive that he had and the fight that he had, he never understood how to develop and maintain relationships.”

“And every time a bridge was built he burned it. Every time there was some connection —  some huge clippers were used to cut it off. And he finds himself on this small island with no access to it and no means to leave it and nothing connected to it. And it’s terribly sad and I just wish his life were different.”

“There was some effort being put together by some people to try and help out and bring together a coalition of the teams that he played for, but he didn’t cooperate and the teams weren’t really sympathetic to the idea because of the nastiness that had existed in terms of comments and the separations. And there he is out there alone.”

“I know Eddie even talked about, ‘Maybe I should just pick the guy up, bring him there. It doesn’t have to be a lot of fanfare, take care of him while he’s there. But I’m not connected to a team anymore. It’s almost as though I’m overstepping. If I were connected to the team, obviously, he’d be front and center no matter what.’”

“It’s horribly sad and I think he’s just so alone out there. I hate to put it in those terms because it’s sounds so maudlin, but that’s honestly the way I feel.”

Jump to the 10:31 mark in the podcast below to hear Policy in his own words:

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