Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Tuna's helpers

He reunited with Terry Glenn, his favorite female receiver, a year ago.

He reunited with Drew Bledsoe, the gifted, indifferent quarterback who blossomed under his tough-love coaching style, a week ago.

I'd bet my bobblehead he soon signs Ty Law to a contract for lots of years and lots of money, and now ol' reliable Troy Brown is there for his taking too. (Don't fret, those of you with No. 80 jerseys: I suspect that Brown will return to do his fourth-receiver/emergency-DB/security-blanket thing for the Pats at a cheaper rate next season. He belongs here, he's still wanted, and he knows it.)

So yes, it's long been established Bill Parcells has a soft spot for his former players. The man demands to shop for the groceries, yet you know exactly which ingredients he will buy.

So many of Parcells's favorites end up with career itineraries remarkably similar to his. With the Pats, he collected ex-Giants. With the Jets, he hoarded ex-Pats. And now he's luring ex-Pats to the Big D.

Makes sense, sort of. It's human nature that in pursuit of his past success, he pursue his past stars, the ones who made him a coaching legend. But sometimes I think it's a wonder he doesn't have 46-year-old Lawrence Taylor lining up as a third-down pass-rush specialist. He does get blinded by loyalty to "his guys," which why Patriots fans had to watch this guy . . .

. . . get scorched like an albino at the beach for one long season.

Yet I do hope Law ends up in Dallas. While I like the Cowboys about as much as I like head lice, I realize that one of my all-time favorite Pats is perfect for them, and vice versa. I'm sure Parcells realizes it too.

Dallas is desperate for a capable cornerback to take the heat off young Terrence Newman, a talented Kansas State product who, frighteningly, played too much like another K-State DB last season. (Initials: Chris Canty.)

Law needs to go to a high-profile franchise where he can have three or four more excellent seasons and enhance his borderline Hall of Fame credentials. If he helps turn Dallas around - and if he joins the Tuna Brigade, they will be a playoff team next season - he'll get much of the credit. It's a natural match.

Parcells will get Law, mark these words. He'll chase Brown. He might chase Phifer, a favorite during his HC of the NYJ days. And then, before we know it, we'll open up the Globe sports section (gratuitous plug) to see this line in the transactions:

DALLAS COWBOYS: Signed cornerbacks Ty Law, Ricky Reynolds and Maurice Hurst, safeties Willie Clay and Terry Ray, tight end Ben Coates, tackle Bruce Armstrong, wide receivers Shawn Jefferson and Ray Lucas, guards Todd Rucci and Max Lane, center Dave Wohlabaugh, punter Tom Tupa, defensive ends Ferric Collons and Mark Wheeler, linebackers Roman Phifer and Todd Collins, and quarterback Scott Secules

And a few days later:

DALLAS COWBOYS: Signed linebacker Lawrence Taylor.

(Note: I should have a Nine Innings Sox column up tomorrow, even though I'm coated in Vicks-Vapo-Rub and apparently dying of what WebMD diagnoses as whooping cough. Don't ever say I'm not gritty, gutty and scrappy.)