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Randy Moss has had a hard time letting football go

SEATTLE - SEPTEMBER 29:  A young fan of Randy Moss #84 of the Minnesota Vikings shows his support during the game against the Seattle Seahawks on September 29, 2002 at Seahawks Stadium in Seattle, Washington.  The Seahawks won 48-23. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) Getty Images

The man who once notoriously said “I play when I wanna play” had a hard time coming to terms with not playing football.

Randy Moss, a future Hall of Famer in his first year at ESPN, explains that he had a hard time putting the game behind him.

“[T]o be able to officially let it go, it took about a good year or two to finally let it go,” Moss told Jonathan Jones of SI.com. “And it’s hard. And that’s why I try to stay busy. You get depressed. You do get depressed.

“When you look at the game of football and what it’s done for different people’s families and where it has taken them, there is a certain type of loyalty to the game. . . . When you look at the game and respecting the game, not cheating the game, little things like that, the game has always been good to me. Now that I’m older, I look at the game and still miss it. But at the same time now is a time for me to give back and teach the game.”

It still sounds like Moss has a little bit of the itch to play.

“Where I’m at closing on 40 years old, I think being able to use me inside the 40-yard line for my height, still my skill set, still have quickness,” Moss said. “I think my speed has left a little bit. But my skillset, 16 games, I’d say anywhere between nine to 12 or 13 touchdowns. Somewhere in there.”

The musing is understandable. Moss routinely sees players who can’t come close to the things he could do in his prime. It’s surely tempting for Moss to think he could contribute, and it would be a great story if he did.

Especially if he were to return once more for the team that is stirring the same kind of local and national excitement last seen when he was a rookie in 1998.

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72 Responses to “Randy Moss has had a hard time letting football go”
  1. bigotshamer says: Oct 11, 2016 4:35 PM

    I love Randy Moss.

    Stay retired.

  2. In Teddy We Trust says: Oct 11, 2016 4:36 PM

    9 to 13 TDs? If you could do it now, why didn’t you do it when you were actually playing four years ago?

    C’mon, man!

  3. MichaelEdits says: Oct 11, 2016 4:36 PM

    Since he said “not cheating the game,” he obviously can’t go back to the Patriots.

  4. guitarfreak21 says: Oct 11, 2016 4:40 PM

    As a vikes guy, I’d love the story from a nostalgia perspective, but Zim would eat Moss for dinner, because there is no part of Moss that could overpower Zim, and being a yes man isn’t really Moss’ style.

  5. somatg3 says: Oct 11, 2016 4:40 PM

    I still think he and Barry Sanders were the two the most exciting players to ever play the game. You had to double team Moss on every play or he would light you up. There was no such thing as a shutdown corner who could guard Moss. No one could guard him one on one.

  6. nomoreseasontix says: Oct 11, 2016 4:45 PM

    I like Randy, but he’s kind of an idiot.
    He was one of the biggest slackers in the game when he played.
    NOW he values it…
    He took a year off when he was in Oakland. Just showed up for the money.

  7. dietrich43 says: Oct 11, 2016 4:46 PM

    I’m sure that Cris Carter had similar thoughts when he went to Miami.

  8. deangelo23hall says: Oct 11, 2016 4:46 PM

    Moss was the greatest receiver I’ve ever seen play. And I was alive and watching the Rice years.

    Double, sometimes triple coverage, didn’t matter. He would still outrun the coverage or out-jump the defenders, and there was nothing you could do about it.

    He made scrubs like Culpeppper look good, cause all they had to do was throw it as far as possible. Even without a HoF’er like Brady his whole career, he still finished 2nd all time in TD’s.

    “If I can’t get to it, nobody can get to it.”

    -Moss.

  9. tonebones says: Oct 11, 2016 4:47 PM

    Moss was by far the greatest WR I’ve ever seen. If he had HOF QB for entire career, his stats would be way ahead of everyone else. He shattered NFL records when he finally hooked up with Tom Brady, but that was long past his prime.

  10. mackcarrington says: Oct 11, 2016 4:48 PM

    He may still have a skill set, speed, and can catch, but what about taking hits from people half his age? He didn’t mention that.

  11. dayglo80 says: Oct 11, 2016 4:52 PM

    he did it under Belicheck – Moss just wants to win. To be on a 15-1 team and a 16-0 team and not have a super bowl ring has to be hard. I would welcome him back for “Part 3” I don’t know if he would play but maybe we could get him that ring this year anyways.

  12. valentino8100 says: Oct 11, 2016 4:53 PM

    I watched Jerry Rice and Cris Carter in the prime of their careers. Neither was as talented as Moss. That said, he’s not coming back. If you wanted to entertain his musings however, he’d never come back to catch passes from Bradford. We all know where he’d want to be.

  13. maust1013 says: Oct 11, 2016 4:55 PM

    MichaelEdits says:
    Oct 11, 2016 4:36 PM
    Since he said “not cheating the game,” he obviously can’t go back to the Patriots.
    ===============

    “So I think that’s why I think I hold the Patriots up on my list as the #1 team, I mean I was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings, I still have love for Minnesota, but the success that I was able to have in New England..”

    Randy Moss
    Dec 17, 2015

  14. igwaybwekay says: Oct 11, 2016 5:06 PM

    Greatest receiver ever to talk himself right out of the league.

  15. tennesseeoilers says: Oct 11, 2016 5:07 PM

    He certainly let it go the season he was a Titan.

  16. shaggytoodle says: Oct 11, 2016 5:08 PM

    He misses the field but I bet he doesn’t miss “Food I wouldn’t even serve to my dog” that was catered to the Vikings team.

  17. orivar says: Oct 11, 2016 5:09 PM

    In Teddy We Trust says:
    Oct 11, 2016 4:36 PM
    9 to 13 TDs? If you could do it now, why didn’t you do it when you were actually playing four years ago?

    ———

    Niners were a bad fit. A very bad fit.

  18. elevandoo says: Oct 11, 2016 5:09 PM

    Moss was great but I can’t put anyone ahead of Rice.

  19. unruhly27 says: Oct 11, 2016 5:17 PM

    Think if he’d play all the time instead if just when Randy wanted to play he wouldn’t miss it so much? If you leave it all out there there’s not much to miss but when you played half ass half the time it makes a person wonder what he could have had and keeps him wanting.

  20. stellarperformance says: Oct 11, 2016 5:17 PM

    Three cheers to this self-centered narcissistic egomaniac, who never got a ring. May Peterson join him.

    Raise your glasses!

  21. idiot411 says: Oct 11, 2016 5:22 PM

    MichaelEdits says:
    Oct 11, 2016 4:36 PM
    Since he said “not cheating the game,” he obviously can’t go back to the Patriots.

    Idiot post

  22. taintedsaints2009 says: Oct 11, 2016 5:25 PM

    Moss is Boss

  23. taintedsaints2009 says: Oct 11, 2016 5:30 PM

    I’ve said it for 10 years and i’ll keep saying it forever:

    If Moss is given a hall of fame quarterback his entire career, he not only would have all the recieving records, he would be regarded as the greatest of all time. No questions asked. Nobody could stop him.

    The only player i’ve ever seen come close to unstoppable like Moss is Gronk, but even then it’s not that close.

  24. jjackwagon says: Oct 11, 2016 5:32 PM

    Translation…I don’t like being a normal person. The real world is a lot tougher than living in the NFL fantasy land.

  25. skol4life says: Oct 11, 2016 5:32 PM

    somatg3 says:
    Oct 11, 2016 4:40 PM
    I still think he and Barry Sanders were the two the most exciting players to ever play the game. You had to double team Moss on every play or he would light you up. There was no such thing as a shutdown corner who could guard Moss. No one could guard him one on one.
    ————————
    Totally agree. The only two guys I’ve seen play were Moss and Sanders that you easily knew they are best guy on both sides of ball on both teams. And yes I’ve seen Rice and Payton play.

  26. jgedgar70 says: Oct 11, 2016 5:34 PM

    Oh, yeah, Moss had on that Panthers sleeveless hoodie to make fun of Dez Bryant for “C’mon Man!” That’s why we stunk up the joint. It was the Moss Curse!

    Yeah, let’s go with that…….

  27. Nofoolnodrool says: Oct 11, 2016 5:36 PM

    MichaelEdits says:
    Oct 11, 2016 4:36 PM
    Since he said “not cheating the game,” he obviously can’t go back to the Patriots.
    ===============

    “So I think that’s why I think I hold the Patriots up on my list as the #1 team, I mean I was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings, I still have love for Minnesota, but the success that I was able to have in New England..”

    Randy Moss
    Dec 17, 2015

    Almost a year for that to ferment in Randys mind….bet it’s different now.
    But I have to admire the devotion of this Cheaties fan. In the face of constant accusations you blindly follow like a sheep or maybe it’s a lemming the butt in front of you in lock step with the Cheaties faithful. Just think you will be trying to eradicate the stain for your entire life.

  28. trailerparkking says: Oct 11, 2016 5:37 PM

    He doesn’t want the last image of him playing to be in a Cheatriot jersey. I can’t blame him, the stain of cheating is permanent on that low class cheating organization.

  29. schmitty2 says: Oct 11, 2016 5:37 PM

    Just as his unmatched physical skills and ability to beat sometimes double and triple teams were his biggest attributes, his inability to play his whole career with a top notch QB and play his hardest on every play were his biggest detriments.

  30. 4grammarpolice says: Oct 11, 2016 5:39 PM

    I thought he let it go while playing for the Raiders. Vote Jill Stein.

  31. vavikingfan says: Oct 11, 2016 5:40 PM

    It sounds like he regrets laying down on the teams he played for .

  32. randy8123 says: Oct 11, 2016 5:40 PM

    He and Barry Sanders were the most exciting guys to watch play I’ve ever seen. 1997 Barry goes for 2k with 14 straight 100 yard games to finish the year, and 1998 84 comes into the league and sets it on fire. Great memories.

  33. randy8123 says: Oct 11, 2016 5:41 PM

    … just scrolled back and apparently I am not alone in this opinion.

  34. weepingjebus says: Oct 11, 2016 5:42 PM

    Eh, if Moss ever felt deflation in all those footballs he caught I’m sure he would say something. That was probably a shot at Sticky Rice.

  35. chris1cat says: Oct 11, 2016 5:46 PM

    Straight Cash Homie!!
    Randy, you’re doing great moving on in your life.
    It’s all good my dawg, you know life moves on bro!
    Loved you blowing the Horn and getting the crowd rockin’ a couple weeks ago. One of the best players I’ve ever seen!

  36. joshgordonsbong says: Oct 11, 2016 5:48 PM

    Straight cash homie

  37. nomoreseasontix says: Oct 11, 2016 5:50 PM

    Moss was a great athlete, for a lanky stick man, but if he wasn’t stoned all the time, he would have been insanely good. Like nobody else.
    Just picture it.

  38. deadspindeluxe says: Oct 11, 2016 5:59 PM

    “He made scrubs like Culpeppper look good, cause all they had to do was throw it as far as possible.”

    The year that Daunte threw for 4700 yards… 2004 I think…. who led the team in receptions? Nate Burleson, Jermaine Wiggins or Randy Moss? Look that up.

  39. descendency says: Oct 11, 2016 6:03 PM

    Downvote me… I don’t care. If we had an all time draft, my first pick at WR would be Randy Moss. You can say he ran 1 route.You can call him soft. You can say he played when he wanted. You can say lots of things about him…

    And you still can’t stop him.

  40. chippys lost binky says: Oct 11, 2016 6:08 PM

    trailerparkking says:
    Oct 11, 2016 5:37 PM
    He doesn’t want the last image of him playing to be in a Cheatriot jersey.]
    +++++++++++++

    The last 3 teams he played for were TN, MN and SF. Moss himself is the one that keeps harkening back to his days with the winningest organization in American pro sports for the last 2o years.
    You know, the one he set the single season record for most td’s by a WR with.

  41. patsfan4lifesbchamps says: Oct 11, 2016 6:09 PM

    I wish Brady didn’t choke bigly in the SB and Moss retired with a ring. How does the greatest offense in history only manage 14 points? Brady took few hits and started seeing ghosts. What a missed opportunity.

  42. codythao35 says: Oct 11, 2016 6:09 PM

    Come back and let’s torch those cheese heads all over again.

  43. upyoursnfu says: Oct 11, 2016 6:12 PM

    Cheater…

  44. stellarperformance says: Oct 11, 2016 6:23 PM

    codythao35 says:
    Oct 11, 2016 6:09 PM
    Come back and let’s torch those cheese heads all over again.
    ////////////////////////////////////

    He was 7-8 against the Packers.

  45. jag1959 says: Oct 11, 2016 6:24 PM

    patsfan4lifesbchamps says:
    Oct 11, 2016 6:09 PM
    I wish Brady didn’t choke bigly in the SB and Moss retired with a ring. How does the greatest offense in history only manage 14 points? Brady took few hits and started seeing ghosts. What a missed opportunity.
    _______________

    Brady took a beating in that game. Tuck and Strahan both commented on it. It amuses me no end to see a Jets fan pretending to be a Pats fan trying to diminish not just Brady but what the Giants D accomplished in that game. Only among the worst of Giants & Pats fanboys is there no respect. Those were 2 great defensive SB’s from both teams. As any non fanboy Hawks fan could tell you sometimes the other guy does what he gets paid for too. Of course that’s a concept a Jets fan would have a hard time with, the guys they pay haven’t gotten it done in 47 years.

  46. pantherfan4055 says: Oct 11, 2016 6:25 PM

    RANDY MOSS IS A BUST

  47. dalvar1001 says: Oct 11, 2016 6:33 PM

    Lazy punk who never really achieved his potiental

  48. patsandwannabees says: Oct 11, 2016 6:33 PM

    jag1959 says:
    Oct 11, 2016 6:24 PM
    patsfan4lifesbchamps says:
    Oct 11, 2016 6:09 PM
    I wish Brady didn’t choke bigly in the SB and Moss retired with a ring. How does the greatest offense in history only manage 14 points? Brady took few hits and started seeing ghosts. What a missed opportunity.
    _______________

    Brady took a beating in that game. Tuck and Strahan both commented on it. It amuses me no end to see a Jets fan pretending to be a Pats fan trying to diminish not just Brady but what the Giants D accomplished in that game. Only among the worst of Giants & Pats fanboys is there no respect. Those were 2 great defensive SB’s from both teams. As any non fanboy Hawks fan could tell you sometimes the other guy does what he gets paid for too. Of course that’s a concept a Jets fan would have a hard time with, the guys they pay haven’t gotten it done in 47 years.
    ———————————————

    To add to that, Brady threw Moss the go ahead touchdown with about 2:13 left on the clock. You can’t blame Brady or Moss. They got the job done. The defense and a sticky helmet was their demise. No cheating comment there. Just an unbelievable, miracle catch on a helmet was what I meant.
    I’ll take Brady to Moss over any QB/WR duo in history. Even ones before the cap era.

  49. 440Barracuda says: Oct 11, 2016 6:35 PM

    If Moss had the work ethic of Rice or CC, he quite possibly could have stuck around long enough (into his late 30s) to shatter all of Rice’s records. He was the most physically gifted player to ever come to the NFL. Unfortunately, that made him quite complacent.

  50. nhpats says: Oct 11, 2016 6:38 PM

    patsfan4lifesbchamps says:
    Oct 11, 2016 6:09 PM
    I wish Brady didn’t choke bigly in the SB and Moss retired with a ring. How does the greatest offense in history only manage 14 points? Brady took few hits and started seeing ghosts. What a missed opportunity.

    ——–

    You should know about choking…..your Jets have done it every year since 1968….

  51. In Teddy We Trust says: Oct 11, 2016 6:40 PM

    stellarperformance says:
    Oct 11, 2016 5:17 PM

    Three cheers to this self-centered narcissistic egomaniac, who never got a ring.
    ______

    Don’t be so hard on yourself.

  52. alfredogarciashead says: Oct 11, 2016 6:43 PM

    Moss now with the wisdom of experience. You should have played harder Randy when you could but instead you chose to coast at times.

  53. 440Barracuda says: Oct 11, 2016 6:47 PM

    stellarperformance says:
    Oct 11, 2016 6:23 PM
    codythao35 says:
    Oct 11, 2016 6:09 PM
    Come back and let’s torch those cheese heads all over again.
    ////////////////////////////////////

    He was 7-8 against the Packers.

    ——————————-

    And I thought football was a team sport. Silly me.

    You also have bad stats, he only played 14 games vs the Packers, Nov 14, 2004 he was inactive. The Vikings lost that game. So, in the games he did play vs the Packers, the Vikings were 7-7. But, in those 14 games, he did catch 70 balls for 1,313 yes with a 18.8ypc avg and 14 tds. I would call that pretty dominant, since in all of those games, the sole focus of the Packers was to stop Randy Moss.
    They were so terrified of Moss that in 1999 (the year after Moss’ rookie season, they drafted 4 dbs, 3 of them in the first 3 rounds.

  54. abninf says: Oct 11, 2016 7:10 PM

    Eh, Moss was never a leader. He was a slacker until the end of his career. I’ll take guys who can win championships, and Moss never won one.

  55. edelmanfanclub says: Oct 11, 2016 7:12 PM

    Moss had 39 TDs in 36 games with Brady, that was in his 30s. I was always sad the Pats could get rings for guys like him, Seau and Mankins. May have had a chance in 08 but Brady tore his ACL. Moss is the best WR I have ever seen, could have been better than Rice but would randomly lose the desire to be great. Happened everywhere he went after Minny and even when he came back to Minny. He like TO wont likely be a FB HOF for reasons outside his control like how stupid the media is.

  56. nflrule says: Oct 11, 2016 7:14 PM

    I wish he and Matt Hassleback would let broadcasting go…

  57. edelmanfanclub says: Oct 11, 2016 7:17 PM

    Brady took more than a few hits in that superbowl, he was getting leveled. No ghosts just punishment from that DL. He played poorly but left the field with the lead, and only had about 30 seconds to try to win it vs the hottest underdog defense of all time. Couldve been different if Belichick took the points with Gostkowski, Asante made the pick, or Tyree didnt make that catch. Didnt happened they lost, as a team. Brady played poorly but not awful given the harassment he took that game.

  58. stampnhawk says: Oct 11, 2016 7:19 PM

    Al Bundy once got 3TDs for Polk High and years later he managed to let go. Do the same Moss and be the thankful you still have money and health.

  59. thebirdofprey says: Oct 11, 2016 7:29 PM

    I never see defenses roll coverage like they did for Randy Moss. This was in when they were still allowed to somewhat put their hands on receivers.

    84 was truly special out there..

  60. unbreakable02215 says: Oct 11, 2016 7:43 PM

    You folks mentioning the beating Brady took in Super Bowl 42 are spot on. Personally I think it was his finest performance. As some have noted, despite the pounding he took from those 280 lbs Pitbulls, he put them up with just over 2 minutes to go. That drive was amazing. Their frickin’ D couldn’t get it done though. Guts guile and heart on that drive.

  61. noringcircus says: Oct 11, 2016 7:52 PM

    Raider Nation says once a Raider, always a Raider. But he and Warren Sapp went to the Raiders only for the money. I used to think that as a talented player he was just misunderstood as a Viking, but watching him play the way he did in Oakland only made me lose what little respect I had for him.

  62. skol4life says: Oct 11, 2016 7:52 PM

    stampnhawk says:
    Oct 11, 2016 7:19 PM
    Al Bundy once got 3TDs for Polk High and years later he managed to let go. Do the same Moss and be the thankful you still have money and health.
    —————————
    Al Bundy scored 4TDs for Polk High in the 1966 City Championship. His fourth was the game winner when he ran over “Spare Tire” Dixon at the goal line. Just sayin.

  63. vikesfansteve says: Oct 11, 2016 8:02 PM

    If he just tried a little in 2010. Doesn’t help Chilly was mentally ill too.

  64. countyk66ers says: Oct 11, 2016 8:09 PM

    It’s kinda amazing to think what if Ron Wolf would have drafted Moss instead of Vonnie Holiday. Favre to Moss would have been great to see. Holmgren might have butted heads with Moss but they might have been able to coexist.

  65. tbabes says: Oct 11, 2016 8:28 PM

    For all of his athletic ability, Randy Moss was an underachiever. Can you imagine what Jerry Rice would have done if he had been born with the body and athletic ability of Randy Moss?

  66. h0metownzero says: Oct 11, 2016 8:47 PM

    Re: So, in the games he did play vs the Packers, the Vikings were 7-7.

    LOL

    Well, at least his record is better than Zimmers.

  67. iamapatsfan says: Oct 11, 2016 8:48 PM

    Nofoolnodrool says:
    Oct 11, 2016 5:36 PM
    MichaelEdits says:
    Oct 11, 2016 4:36 PM
    Since he said “not cheating the game,” he obviously can’t go back to the Patriots.
    ===============

    “So I think that’s why I think I hold the Patriots up on my list as the #1 team, I mean I was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings, I still have love for Minnesota, but the success that I was able to have in New England..”

    Randy Moss
    Dec 17, 2015

    Almost a year for that to ferment in Randys mind….bet it’s different now.
    But I have to admire the devotion of this Cheaties fan. In the face of constant accusations you blindly follow like a sheep or maybe it’s a lemming the butt in front of you in lock step with the Cheaties faithful. Just think you will be trying to eradicate the stain for your entire life.

    ——

    Do you carry a bucket with you everywhere you go?

    I ask because of your name and how hard you’ve been fooled by Goodell, I can only imagine your mouth must be like a miniature Niagara Falls 24/7.

  68. bigdogsolec says: Oct 11, 2016 9:26 PM

    COME BACK RANDY

    take over the # 2 spot on receiving yrds , beat T.O.

    Rank Player Yds
    1 Jerry Rice+ 22,895
    2 Terrell Owens 15,934
    3 Randy Moss 15,292

    ONLY need 642 yrds ,
    1 season comon dude retire a

    VIKING

    WITH PRIDE ..

    SKOL

  69. wolfman55h says: Oct 12, 2016 12:50 AM

    This is why you should hustle every down. He is improving as an announcer.

  70. pzebich says: Oct 12, 2016 7:09 AM

    Enough of this slacker BS, you show me one WR that can and does run all out EVERY play when he knows the ball isn’t coming his way or it being a pass play to begin with. The difference with Randy is he just admitted it.

  71. fmc651 says: Oct 12, 2016 2:35 PM

    Best WR to play the game. Rice like E.Smith may have the records. But their weren’t the best at their positions.Randy had better talent.He was labeled with “I play when I want to play” by shabby journalism. A local reporter asked him if Cris Carter got him ready to play. He said no he plays when I want to play. National media went with that quote only.

  72. fmc651 says: Oct 12, 2016 2:38 PM

    edelmanfanclub says:
    Oct 11, 2016 7:12 PM

    Moss had 39 TDs in 36 games with Brady, that was in his 30s. Moss is the best WR I have ever seen. Me too.

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