Suddenly talk-less T.O. posts note instead of talking

IRVING, Texas -- A new tactic for Terrell Owens: instead of talking, he wrote a note.

Even Owens apparently knows the Dallas Cowboys' game Sunday against New England, a pair of 5-0 teams and multiple Super Bowl winners, doesn't need any extra hype.

Nor does Tom Brady vs. Tony Romo, and more interestingly, Owens vs. Randy Moss in a matchup of the league's highest-scoring offenses.

In place of the usually talkative receiver, reporters found at Owens' locker Wednesday a nearly poster-sized, typewritten note:

"Dear Reporters,

"Due to the magnitude of this week's game and high volume of questions for the Original 81 about the other 81. I will be taking all questions immediately following Sunday's game.

"Sincerely, (followed by Owens' signature)

"p.s. Getcha Popcorn Ready."

The "other 81" was an obvious reference to Moss, the controversial five-time Pro Bowl receiver who after two difficult years in Oakland is flourishing in his first season with the Patriots.

Owens' postscript referred to his "get your popcorn ready"

comment made when he signed with the Cowboys in the summer of 2006 - before he caught an NFL-high 13 TDs in his Dallas debut. Owens has 21 catches for 387 yards and three TDs this season.

"I think he's pretty focused. We don't want to give them any bulletin-board material," tight end Jason Witten said. "There's enough said. We all know what the challenge is. ... He's staying focused. He's anxious, excited about the challenge."

Moss is tied for the NFL lead with seven touchdown catches and has a league-high 551 yards (on 34 catches), even after being sidelined much of training camp with a hamstring injury - similar to Owens' first camp with the Cowboys last year.

While Owens wasn't in the locker room, he was at practice, an unusual Wednesday workout with players in shorts without pads or helmets.

During the open locker room period, several of Owens' teammates stopped and read the note, then walked away smiling.

"It was funny reading it," Chris Canty said. "That's T.O. being T.O. You've got to love that guy."

Plus, they saw bigger messages in Owens' short statement.

"He's going to show it on the field. ... The talk is over. Now it's all about getting prepared and trying to get a win," DeMarcus Ware said.

"Anytime it's a big game, you guys (reporters) get on that guy pretty good and look for a sound byte," Marcus Spears said. "He's taking a different road. he's letting 5-0 speak for him right now."

When reporters crowded around quarterback Tony Romo, whose locker is in a different area of the room, they asked him about Owens' sign.

"I think it's interesting," Romo initially responded. "What is it?"

After being told, Romo quipped, "I may do that, too."

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

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