Randy Moss? Good Fit?
Randy Moss has provided us with some brilliant highlight reels. He has been called the best deep receiver ever to play the game. He is still feared enough that opposing teams won’t cheat the safety up to the box when he is lined up wide. He is still the same height and for the most part his skill set isn’t quickly declining.
Yet, he has been jettisoned from two teams this season alone. There was a lovefest in New England since he joined them. He had a year to remember in 2007. It should have concluded with a Super Bowl ring, but it didn’t. This year, he was too loud off the field and quiet when on it. He had nine receptions 139 yards in four games with the Patriots and got into the end zone only three times. That’s essentially only two catches a game. He talked too much, maybe argued a little too much with the team, and the Patriots then decided to send him to the team he spent seven years with to begin his career, the Minnesota Vikings, for a third round pick.
He didn’t do much better in Minnesota. He had thirteen catches for 174 yards and two touchdowns in four games with the Vikings. Around three catches a game and a touchdown every other game for an athlete of his ability. Unacceptable. What made it worse was two chances to maybe catch a pass that he pulled up on in the Packers game and the Patriots game. Playing against the Packers, on a play very late in the game that could have given them the win, Brett Favre threw up a jump ball that only one person had any chance to catch. That one person was Moss. He barely put his arms up. Against the Patriots, on a pass interference call, he still had an opportunity to catch the pass and likely would have ended up in the end zone afterward. He even had his head turned and was looking at the ball. Instead of putting forth maximum effort to go and get the ball, he decided that the pass interference call was good enough for he and his team. Brett Favre would have his chin bloodied soon thereafter and was knocked out the game.
To make matters worse, he complained about food the prior Friday and made the mom and pop caterers feel little. Then he had a crazy interview where he threw his team under the rug and praised the Patriots. For Childress, who had a similar experience with Terrell Owens in Philadelphia, that was enough (and that is a different story, because Childress should have discussed it with team management first). Although he had just given up a third round pick to get Moss, he wasn’t worth keeping around. Moss was placed on waivers Tuesday.
On Wednesday, the Titans were the only team to put a claim in for Randy Moss. That says something about Randy Moss. And it isn’t good. But it could work. The Titans may have gotten a steal by claiming the same guy they passed on in the 1998 draft.
For a second, let’s compare the career of the guy, Kevin Dyson, another WR, whom they took instead.
As you can see, Randy Moss was by far the superior talent. He had more touchdowns in 2007 (23) alone than Dyson had in his whole career. He almost outproduced Kevin Dyson in all of the categories in his first two years compared to Dyson’s entire career. There is a chance for redemption in Tennessee. Randy Moss could have been the difference in the Super Bowl for the Titans. They came up a yard short then, and looking back, they came up much shorter in choosing Dyson over Moss.
Here’s what we like about Tennessee’s decision to claim him off waivers. They have a no-nonsense coach in Jeff Fisher who has had to deal with the likes of Albert Hayneworth, who makes Randy Moss look like an angel, as well as people on smaller scales, such as Lendale White. He has been with the organization for several years and is well respected around the league. Teams play for him. He doesn’t lose his locker room, like say a Brad Childress might. He commands a certain respect that only a couple of other coaches can relate to, such as that hooded coach in New England that he played very well for. Randy Moss also has two quarterbacks that aren’t afraid to chuck it deep, and for the most part enjoy chucking it deep. He already has experience playing with Collins from their time together in Oakland. The offense in Tennessee plays the long ball because it likes to keep the opposing defense honest in order to create more room for the dynamic Chris Johnson. If Nate Washington and Kenny Britt can get their deep balls, imagine what Moss will do. Hell, look at what Kenny Britt did against the Eagles. This team has a great, nasty defense and just became much more balanced on offense. They’re sitting in second place in their division and still have five divisional games left. This team is more than likely headed to the playoffs. They have great food down there too, so the caterers may not be yelled at this time around.
But most importantly, Randy Moss is at the lowest he can be right now in his CONTRACT YEAR. There was a reason for putting that in caps. If he wants a nice contract instead of the kind of contract T.O. got this year, he has to be on his best behavior. He also should have a grudge on his shoulder after being claimed by only one team on Wednesday. Sort of like the grudge he had when he was passed on by 20 teams in the 1998 NFL Draft. Randy Moss has two things to play for. Redemption/revenge and Money. We saw how he played when only the former motivated him. Now there’s even more on his mind. The talent is still there. It was the motivation that has been holding him back. The league had better watch out.
He’s got something for the rest of the league too…