Randy Moss may not have been officially unpacked before the Minnesota Vikings decided to waive him on Nov. 1. The seven-time Pro Bowl receiver’s four-week stint in Minnesota was over – without an explanation, without a reason. A sorrow-filled and bizarre press conference may have been the motive for Moss’ release, but the Vikings haven’t explained in detail.

After Minnesota’s 28-18 loss against the New England Patriots last Sunday, Moss declined questions from reporters and issued his own rant (the second time he’s done so this season concerning his former Patriot team). The lanky receiver expressed his love, devotion and his heart for his team, the only problem being it wasn’t for his current Minnesota club. “I don’t know how many more times I’ll be in New England again. But I leave Coach Belichick and those guys with a salute: I love you guys. I miss you. I’m out,” Moss said in his postgame press conference.

The next day, however, he was out of Minnesota. Reports surfaced that Moss declined a team plane trip back to Minnesota, electing to stay in New England to visit family and friends to which Vikings head Coach Brad Childress conceded. The Minnesota coach may have already had his mind made up after Moss blasted Childress and his coaching staff for not following his tips on the game plan for the Patriots.

“I tried to prepare … tried to talk to the coaches and players about how this game was going to be played – a couple tendencies here a couple tendencies there,” Moss said. “But the bad part about it, you have six days to prepare for a team and on the seventh day, that day being Sunday, meaning today, I guess they come over to me and say, ‘Dang, Moss, you were right about a couple plays and a couple schemes that they were going to run.’”

Moss added: “It hurts as a player that you put a lot of hard work in all week and towards the end of the week, that’s when they acknowledge about the hard work you put in throughout the week. It’s actually a disappointment.”

Since being drafted in 1998, Moss has been anything but a disappointment on the field. His trademark size, speed and athleticism helped dubbed him “The Freak” during his early years in the NFL. But maybe more polarizing than his receiving skills was an attitude that often rubbed fans, coaches and teammates the wrong way. Moss admitted to not playing every game with his full effort and smoking marijuana on occasion. He was originally traded from Minnesota to Oakland. Then from Oakland to New England and again from New England back to Minnesota before being released.

Moss will be a trendy name if he clears waivers by Wednesday. According to ESPN, the Chicago Bears, Miami Dolphins, Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins are a few of the teams that will inquire about Moss’ services. For the third time this season, Moss will don a new jersey, but who knows how long it will be before the disgruntled star writes his own walking papers again.

 

Stephen D. Riley

Special to the AFRO