The phrase, "I'm my own worst enemy," is supposed to be limited only to an all-time list of overused cliches, making itself truly worthy of society's most unique and polarizing of individuals.
One of those aforementioned unique, polarizing individuals should be preparing for another Super Bowl run or, at a minimum, approaching the end of his Hall of Fame career as a beloved figure, the face of his of franchise and one of the faces of the league.
Terrell Owens is none of these things, and because of his bombastic, frequently selfish and periodically disloyal approach to the game, he now stands on the outside of it -- having traded company acronyms, NFL for VH1.
To this date, no team has stepped forward to lay claim to a player that's the No. 2 all-time active leader in receptions, the No. 3 all-time leader in receiving yardage and the No. 3 all-time leader in touchdowns.
If this was anyone other than Owens, the very idea of not bringing him aboard anywhere would be preposterous.
But we are talking about Owens and that's the problem here.
Realistically, he'd be a starting receiver on most teams in the league -- a No. 1 option in places like Detroit, Tampa Bay and Chicago -- but word around the league campfire is that he's simply not worth all the drama he brings.
Some of that drama, of course, is our fault.
Because Owens loves the microphone and camera, they both tend to follow him and sometimes warp the perception of some of his actions, which are rather commonplace among highly paid, highly competitive and highly stressed professional athletes with a gladiator mentality.
Players sometimes scream at their quarterback about being open (on every play); come off selfish or aloof in news conferences; and in the moments following a season-ending loss, cry or speak in the third person.
The problem is that Owens has done all four things with the whole football world watching, and people -- including those who make NFL personnel decisions -- have awfully long memories.
San Francisco. Philadelphia. Dallas. Three stops, three missed opportunities and three burned bridges that keep him unemployed today and will continue to haunt him long after he's enshrined in Canton.
In the end, he got the publicity he craved but completely overshadowed what should have universally been considered a brilliant career in the process.
What an incredible waste.