Moss: '98 Vikes Played Streetball


Super Bowl week press conferences are about the silliest you’ll ever see. First you have all the non-sports media types asking their idiotic questions, then you have the regular sports media types who can’t think of anything new to ask. And then you have the players who are bored of the whole thing.

This year at least we have Randy Moss to keep us entertained. Yeah, that’s how bad this stuff is – we have to look to Randy to give us things to blog about.

Randy did manage to deliver one noteworthy nugget for Vikings fans this week: He was asked to compare this year’s Patriots with the ’98 Vikings, the team whose all-time season scoring record the Pats broke. And this is what he said:

"I think the Minnesota Vikings my rookie year had a lot of athletes out there. We were just out there basically playing a lot of street ball, and just going out there and making things happen. I think this year, the Patriots have come together, and we rely on our preparation and game-planning and our practicing to go out there and win games for us. I think that us being an athletic team like we are, that’s just something extra on the cake."

A lot of that streetball mentality came from Brian Billick, who was basically fearless as a play-caller. Of course it helped to have a QB like Randall Cunningham who could fling it sixty yards in the air (while grinning like a kid at Christmas), and Moss to run those deep routes, and Cris Carter taking care of the possession duties and Robert Smith running the ball; and an offensive line that was basically a brick wall. Talent-wise, I think you could argue that the ’98 Vikings were superior to this year’s Pats, at least on offense. But of course that team had Dennis Green coaching it, not Bill Belichick. And that’s really the main difference. Green would get you into the playoffs, but never seal the deal. Belichick has three rings and is going for his fourth.

Randy also said that he had “great memories of Minnesota” and “did want to retire a Viking.” But I don’t believe him on that last part. I don’t think he had any special affection for the Vikings organization, nor was he devastated when they dumped him on the Raiders. He was happy when things were going well, and miserable and a bad teammate when things went south. And now there’s talk that the Patriots might not be willing to pay him enough to keep him around next year – which will touch off a round of bring-back-Randy hype in Purpleland. But that particular reunion would be a disastrous one. A quarterback like Tarvaris Jackson would be chewed up and spit out by a guy like Moss.

Acquiring Moss would mean they needed a veteran QB to install as the starter, and who are they going to get? Donovan McNabb? I could more easily see Moss ending up with McNabb in Philly than in Minnesota. And of course we know that Brad Childress would never bring in a low-character guy like Moss. He’s good enough to play for a potential undefeated Super Bowl champ led by arguably the greatest coach and quarterback ever, but not good enough for the KAO.