Over the past week, there have been many Patriots’ fans calling for the return of wide receiver Randy Moss onto the football team for 2012. Five years ago, the Patriots traded a 4th round pick to the Oakland Raiders for Moss’ services and were not disappointed after his record breaking 23 touchdowns. It seemed like under Josh McDaniels’ offense, Brady and Moss were ready to take off as the best QB-WR tandem in the NFL since the days of Joe Montana and Jerry Rice.
So, this question should be easy for Patriots’ fans to answer. Now that Moss has declared that he is coming back and has continually posted his U-Stream videos, the answer should be a resounding yes after fans saw the need for a deep threat in the Super Bowl loss to the New York Giants .Today, I am here to tell you why the Patriots need to avoid Randy Moss and go with a better veteran option that buys more into a concept that is fundamental to success in football.
That concept is TEAM!!! Moss proved over the course of his time in New England that he is not a team player. It showed in 2010 when after Wes Welker had a great game in the opener coming back from a torn ACL, Moss took the podium and whined to the media that he felt the team would not pay him. Then, there was the constant action of quitting on routes or giving up on passes whether it was from Matt Cassel in 2008 or Brady in 2009-10. I remember a throw in Week 2 against the Jets in ’10 where Brady threw up a pass to Moss in the 2nd half that Randy could have gone for, but was instead intercepted by Antonio Cromartie in the 3rd quarter.
I know Moss loves New England and he respects Belichick, but does this guy deserve another chance to comeback after being out of the league for a year? Is he truly a changed wide receiver looking for a ring or is he going to turn back into the diva receiver that got him run out of town by Bill Belichick and Bill O’Brien. It’s a tough risk to take.
For me, I have the perfect guy I want the Patriots to get. After they resolve the contract with Wes Welker, they should look into acquiring former Colts’ wide receiver Reggie Wayne. Wayne knows how to be a team player from his days in Indianapolis with Peyton Manning and would buy into the TEAM concept to win another ring. As for production, Wayne had nearly 1,000 yards receiving last year with no quarterback. That says something of what the guy could put up with Brady at the helm. He can still stretch the field and make some big plays for New England to extend drives and allow the tight ends to get open.
As you debate about whether you want Moss to come back, keep this in mind. I have a Moss #81 jersey at my house, but I still do not want him to come back. Thanks for the memories Randy, but if you do not want to buy into the Patriot way wholeheartedly, then the team will find another veteran piece to plug in and still be successful. As you dissect what New England should get in Free Agency, when you think about how much talent the individual has, think about how he will contribute to this TEAM being better and being less of a distraction than what I am sure will be the Gisele media circus at mini-camp in May.