DALLAS, Texas (AFP) — The suggestion that starlet Jessica Simpson should make herself scarce during boyfriend Tony Romo's games with the Dallas Cowboys was just a joke, Romo's teammate Terrell Owens says.
Owens, the Cowboys' flamboyant and outspoken wide receiver, sparked an uproar when he said Simpson was a distraction for the Cowboys quarterback, and indicated he wasn't the only player on the National Football League team to feel that way.
"Right now, Jessica Simpson is not a fan favorite in this locker room or in Texas Stadium," Owens said on Wednesday.
But by Wednesday night, he was backtracking, saying the remarks were in jest. He said he had already apologized to Romo, and hoped to have a chance to speak to Simpson, too.
"I tried to get (Romo) to call her so I can explain to her that she doesn't really know me and that I can be funny," Owens said. "And that everything I say, the media will take it and run with it. It's not a big deal. I will try to rectify the situation between her and I."
Owens had been asked about Simpson in the wake of the Cowboys' National Football League loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.
Simpson had a front-row seat in a Texas Stadium suite, and Romo played a woeful game that included three interceptions and no touchdowns.
Although the Cowboys had already secured a first-round bye in the postseason, the defeat meant they missed out on a chance to claim home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.
However, the presence of his No. 1 fan hasn't always been a hindrance to Romo. She attended recent Cowboys games against the Green Bay Packers and New York Jets, in both of which Romo piloted the team to victory.
It seems more likely that Romo's bruised thumb was a bigger factor in his sub-par performance, and Owens said his flip remarks to the media didn't reflect his real opinion on the Simpson subject.
"I understand how everybody is looking at Jessica Simpson as a distraction and that's definitely not how I saw it," he said. "For me, she was there to support Tony.
"He had a bad game. I don't think she had anything to do with it. We lost as a team."
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