To play next year, Randy Moss needs a team that wants to pay him. That’s his major hurdle right now, since he’s currently unwanted and discarded.
The question, though, is whether or not Moss wants to be wanted.
We’re very much in the middle of a time in the NFL calendar when veteran players of Moss’ ilk begin aggressively looking for and often finding work, even if it’s only temporary employment in the form of a training camp tryout. Example: say that Terrell Owens is all but extinct if you like (and you’re definitely not wrong), but just last summer the Seahawks thought he was worthy of a training camp test drive. That ended, um, poorly, but the point remains that a 38-year-old receiver who had just recovered from a major injury was given an opportunity.
At 36, there’s still the possibility that Moss could be granted that same courtesy sometime this summer. But does he want it?
Maybe? Maybe not? I don’t know, you don’t know, and most importantly, Moss doesn’t know.
That was the word earlier today from Mike Freeman, whose sources told him that Moss still hasn’t decided if he’ll play next season after the 49ers didn’t offer him a new contract. Which I suppose seems about right, since the feeling is mutual and the NFL hasn’t yet decided if it wants Moss.
It appears Moss’ career is over, and soon once he officially announces it, we’ll be able to begin assessing his legacy in earnest. Unlike Donovan McNabb, the conversation about Moss’ Hall of Fame status should last all of eight seconds (YES YES YES). But there’s a much grander question at play with Moss, and one that he raised himself during Super Bowl Media Day: is he the greatest receiver of all-time, and better than Jerry Rice?
This is where there’s a similarity with McNabb in that at least for the Rice/Moss comparison, Moss’ problem is one of longevity. I won’t write much more here since I had a thoroughly cleansing rant on this topic back in early February. In short, although he went through a natural decline, Rice was still productive into his early 40′s (he had 869 receiving yards during his age 41 season), while Moss jumped off a jagged cliff at 33.