T.O. prefers to work out on his own

Updated: March 26, 2009, 10:22 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Terrell Owens plans to show up for workouts in Buffalo when he's required to be there.

The Bills wide receiver, signed to a one-year deal earlier this month after being waived by the Dallas Cowboys, told reporters he prefers to follow his own offseason workout routine. He said Wednesday that he's informed coach Dick Jauron that he plans to join his teammates at the Bills' facility in Orchard Park, N.Y., when the workouts become mandatory, rather than voluntary.

[+] EnlargeTerrell Owens
BurwellPhotography.comTerrell Owens, honored at an Alzheimer's Association gala in Washington on Wednesday, says he will attend workouts in Buffalo when they become mandatory.

"I talked to Coach Jauron prior to the start of the workouts about that," Owens told reporters. "Right now if there's nothing mandatory that I have to be a part of, then I won't intend to be there."

Owens said he expects to attend the Bills' minicamp in June and could possibly work out with his new teammates at some other point in the offseason. But when it comes to staying in shape, T.O. prefers to do things his way, on his own.

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"I've never gone to a voluntary workout," Owens said. "I have a personal trainer. I take very good care of myself. I take pride in coming into camp in shape.

"If I'm in the area, I tend to stop by the facilities and work out with the guys. You know, I'm looking forward to that type of stuff."

Owens, who was in Washington on Wednesday night to receive an award from the Alzheimer's Association, said he has reached out to Bills quarterback Trent Edwards and that he's anxious to build a good relationship. "We talked shortly after I signed and we exchanged text messages," Owens said. "We're looking forward to the upcoming season."

Edwards, whose text messages to the Bills' front office when Owens was released helped spark the team's pursuit of the mercurial wide receiver, said Monday that he hadn't communicated much with Owens, but that his absence didn't bother him.

"He's obviously been playing the sport a long time," Edwards said, according to the report. "He knows his body, he knows the relationship he needs to have with the quarterback. ... I'm sure he'll be here in the near future, and I'm anxious to get that going."

Two weeks ago, Jauron noted Owens has a history of not taking part in voluntary sessions with his past teams, but hoped the Bills would be an exception.

"My hope is that he's here," Jauron said. "He knows how important it is for us, particularly in his first year with us."

Owens said he did not mind leaving "America's Team" for the relative anonymity of upstate New York.

"For me, it's not a matter of what city I go to, whether they have the popularity of the Dallas Cowboys or the following of Philadelphia or San Francisco. I am embracing a team and an organization," Owens said.

"I wanted to go to a place where a team and teammates wanted me. No matter what uniform I'm in, I'm going to perform. The Bills jumped at the opportunity to get me to Buffalo," Owens added. "I'm excited. I'm going to embrace the city. I can't wait to get in that uniform and start practicing. Sometimes it only takes a player or two to get a team over the hump."

The Alzheimer's Association honored Owens for raising awareness about the fight against the disease, which affects his grandmother, Alice Black, who raised him. On Wednesday, Owens credited his grandmother for the way he plays the game.

"My grandmother has been very, very instrumental in where I am as a person and my determination on the football field," Owens said.

"She said when I was a little kid there will be tough times in life," Owens said. "You just have to face them head-on. There are going to be people that like you and there are going to be people who don't like you.

"There's going to be some jealousy, some envy. But over the years I've been able to remain strong and use her as my rock and my strength."

Information from Reuters was used in this report.

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