On Tuesday, an ordinarily media-shy Randy Moss made a bold proclamation: Moss said he’s the best receiver to ever play football.
On Wednesday, Moss reiterated the claim.
“Everybody is going to have their opinion,” Moss said, via Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com. “I do not live on numbers. I really do not. If you sit here and just said, ‘Who is the greatest running back?’ Statistically it is Emmitt Smith. People would say Barry Sanders, Gale Sayers or Jim Brown. [But] their numbers do not match Emmitt Smith.”
Basically, then, Moss thinks that in the end it’s a subjective assessment.
“You make your own judgment,” Moss said. “You really do. I know what I think. I am not going to sit up here and tell you how to look at it and how to judge it. I think when it comes to going out there, making plays and helping the team do the things that they are able to do to win the game, I think I am the greatest receiver ever. Point blank. Next question.”
But he continued, pointing to the impact his comments made as proof of his claim.
“I think that it speaks of the impact that I have made on this NFL football league,” Moss said. “If Joe Blow would have said it, I do not know if it would have been in USA Today.
“Since Randy Moss said it, it is front of the sports page. Like I said, I just try to stay humble and do my job. That is what I am able to do. I am able to come out and try to say these things, but I do believe in my heart and my mind I am the greatest to ever do it.”
In our (or at least my) view, Moss could have been the greatest to ever do it, if he had given his all, all the time. But it was Moss himself who said, “I play when I wanna play.” All too often, he chose not to play, quitting on his team for a drive, a game, or (in 2006 with the Raiders) a whole season.
The only argument in his favor comes from the fact that Rice played with better quarterbacks. Rarely if ever did Rice ever have to do anything that catch a ball that hit him in the numbers while running in stride.
Still, even with lesser quarterbacks, Moss could have been the better player — if he had approached his profession with the same professionalism as Rice.