NEW YORK -- In a landslide, Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Terrell Owens was nominated the Associated Press Sports Writers "Asshole of the Year" Wednesday night.
Although other candidates in the running included former Miami Dolphins head coach Nick Saban and Owens' boss -- Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, who's been a candidate every year for the past decade, Owens took home the award with more than 75 percent of the vote.
"He's a one of a kind," said television announcer and Hall-of-Fame coach John Madden. "You never see any other players like him on the field. In a sense, he's a Major League asshole."
Although the former Raiders coach briefly considered nominating Saban, who left the Dolphins to coach the University of Alabama earlier this month, Madden said in the end, the decision came down to how much chaos a candidate contributed to the team.
"Now, Terrell Owens is a contributor. He's consistent," Madden said. "It's not just in Dallas, but also in Philadelphia and San Francisco, he's created all kinds of problems for his teammates. He's a natural."
Although he did not appear at the award dinner, citing prior commitment to causing trouble at a local Dallas nightclub, Owens released a statement through his agent Thursday morning, thanking sports writers nationwide for their votes of confidence.
"For all the things that they've done wrong, the media finally got something right," Owens wrote in the release. "I am and have always been an asshole. I am proud of the fact."
Although he could not be reached for comments, a league source not wanting to be identified said Jones has some concerns about Owens winning the award.
"He might use that to his advantage," the source said. "Being the asshole of the year, he might just decide it's now his right to hold on for a better contract, or quit on the team or demand a trade."
Owens' agent, Drew Rosenhaus, however, assured fans Thursday morning in a press conference that Owens' award won't change a thing.
"Terrell is not going anywhere," he said. "He's staying here. He's got a contract, he's being paid to be an asshole, and he's going to stay in Dallas and destroy the team."