NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A day after being released by the Titans, Eddie George is working on a return to Texas. The Cowboys are discussing with George a
two-year contract structure that, in reality, will be a one-year commitment for approximately $1.5 million, plus incentives, ESPN's Ed Werder
Sources told Werder that George and his agent, Lamont Smith, have scheduled a meeting with Dallas owner Jerry Jones and other team officials for
Friday at the Cowboys' Valley Ranch headquarters. George, who has spent his entire eight year career with the Titans (starting in 1996, when they were
the Houston Oilers), reportedly had made signing with the Cowboys his priority, and has declined offers to make visits to other interested teams until
he determines Dallas' interest in his services.
This report comes a day after Dallas sources told Werder that the team had only modest interest in the former Tennessee stalwart. According to
sources, Cowboys owner and GM Jerry Jones has maintained interest in signing George since it became apparent he might be released, but head coach Bill
Parcells and others were reluctant, fearing George's presence would interfere with the development of rookie running back Julius Jones, the team's top
Parcells had been planning to use a rotation system in which Jones would probably play the majority of the time with fullback Richie Anderson playing
halfback in third-down passing situations. The acquisition of George would reduce the pressure on the Cowboys to have Jones ready to be the primary
ballcarrier when the season opens. George has never missed a game during his career and will set a positive example for Jones in terms of work ethic,
preparation and practice habits.
George, who turns 31 this season, rejected the Titans' attempts to reduce his contract this season to $1.5 million. George was willing to accept a
reduced contract but wanted at least $2.5 million and security beyond the 2004 season.
"How do we replace George? Well, we're going to have to replace him with more than one guy," Reese said. "It's going to be impossible to find one guy
to do all the things Eddie did."
That process began on Thursday, when Tennessee agreed to a one-year deal with free agent running back Antowain Smith.