Ramble On Sports

Where sports, pop culture and everything else collide.

Straight gone, homey?

Posted by Bill Koch on October 5, 2010

There won’t be anything boring about the New England Patriots’ bye week after the news that broke on Tuesday night.

Multiple reports indicate that the Patriots are working on a trade that would send Randy Moss back to where he started his career, as the wide receiver looks bound for Minnesota provided that he can work out a contract extension with the Vikings.

Moss’ contract is up at the end of this season and talks with the Patriots about an extension have either stalled or didn’t exist in the first place. He wasted no time addressing the situation this season with some ill-timed statements after New England’s season-opening 38-30 win over the Cincinnati Bengals. Moss didn’t publicly demand a trade, dog it on the field or get into trouble anywhere, but he did make it clear that he understood the business decision the Patriots were prepared to make. As such, Moss was ready to make his own business decision and leave the team after fulfilling his contract obligations in 2010.

Spare us the outrage over this deal or the crying about New England being reluctant to spend any money. The Patriots have the league’s richest quarterback in Tom Brady, one of its best paid defensive linemen in Vince Wilfork and depth at virtually every position built through their old recipe of drafting and development. Moss was held without a catch for the first time in his New England career on Monday night, and the Patriots have rarely looked better than they did during their 41-14 thrashing of the Miami Dolphins.

Think the offense will suffer with Moss gone? Think again. This team won three Super Bowls with David Givens, Deion Branch, Troy Brown and David Patten as its primary receivers – none of those guys are within sniffing distance of the NFL Hall of Fame. New England is currently reloading with young studs like Aaron Hernandez, Rob Gronkowski and Brandon Tate. Wes Welker will still be here and remains the best slot receiver in all of football. That gives Brady plenty of targets, and he was excellent Monday in a 19-for-24 performance.

In addition, Moss is well on the wrong side of 30 and certainly won’t be worth the salary demand that he’ll make, even if there is no cap when the NFL returns after its suspected 2011 lockout. This Patriots regime under Bill Belichick is all about value, as evidenced by the fourth round pick that they just received for the human bust that is Laurence Maroney. Think they can con the Vikings into a second rounder in 2011? That would give New England two first round picks (its own and Oakland’s, which was stolen in the Richard Seymour deal and is getting better by the week) and three second round picks (its own, Minnesota’s for Moss and Carolina’s for the pick that turned into former Appalachian State quarterback and current wide receiver bust Armanti Edwards).

This is how the Patriots operate. Nobody is untouchable, not even Moss for all he’s done with the franchise since 2007. If he does leave, we’ll give you something to remember him by – Minnesota fans should know this clip quite well. They might be about to see it again live and in person.

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2 Responses to “Straight gone, homey?”

  1. Steve G. said

    Spare us the outrage over this deal or the crying about New England being reluctant to spend any money.

    I’ve heard people voice that opinion on WEEI, and I don’t understand it at all. They realize there is a salary cap in the NFL, right? It’s not even like the NBA’s, where you can kind of go over it in clever ways, if your owner is willing to pay a 50 percent surcharge.

    As far as I know, the Patriots are spending at or near the cap every year. You can argue that they haven’t been spending prudently lately – for example, signing Thomas and others instead of trying to pool that money toward Mankins and Samuel – but on the whole, their track record is good. (A similar problem occurs when evaluating Theo Epstein; he’s definitely a Top 5 or 10 GM, which plenty of Boston fans don’t realize because it’s not like they’re following Kansas City Royals transactions.)

  2. Randy Moss said

    […] Straight gone, homey? « Ramble On Sports […]

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