Former Jaguars RB sounds salty about Randy Moss
By Adam Patrick
Former Jacksonville Jaguars running back Fred Taylor recently attempted to explain how former Minnesota Vikings receiver Randy Moss won Rookie of the Year in 1998 over him.
Before Justin Jefferson and Ja’Marr Chase came along, Minnesota Vikings legend Randy Moss set the gold standard for rookie wide receiver performances in the NFL. Despite the dominance of Moss, it sounds like former Jacksonville Jaguars running back Fred Taylor believes he and the former Vikings receiver at least had very similar rookie seasons back in 1998.
During a recent episode of “The Pivot Podcast”, Taylor shared why he thinks Moss beat him out for the Offensive Rookie of the Year award in 1998.
"“[Moss] had two big games. Primetime, against Dallas and Green Bay. He went crazy [against Green Bay]. But those two big games [were why]. Statistically, I had better [numbers].”"
Was former Jacksonville Jaguars RB Fred Taylor a better rookie than former Minnesota Vikings WR Randy Moss in 1998?
Looking back at the 1998 season, Moss finished with 69 catches for 1,313 yards and 17 touchdowns in 16 games. His 17 trips to the end zone are still the most by a rookie receiver in NFL history.
Taylor ended his rookie campaign in 1998 with 1,644 total yards (1,223 rushing, 421 receiving) and 17 touchdowns in 15 games. However, he also had 308 touches in 1998, compared to Moss who only had 70 touches. Taylor averaged 5.3 yards per touch as a rookie, while Moss averaged a whopping 18.8 yards per touch in his first year with the Vikings.
To Taylor’s point about Moss basically getting more national attention as a rookie because of his primetime performances against the Green Bay Packers in Week 5 and the Dallas Cowboys in Week 13, yes the former Minnesota receiver exploded in these matchups, but he had plenty of other impressive performances during his rookie season as well.
Moss kicked off his rookie year with four catches for 95 yards and two touchdowns against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Then in the Vikings’ second matchup against the Packers in 1998, the Hall-of-Fame receiver hauled in eight passes for 153 yards and a score. He went on to end his rookie season with 11 touchdown catches in Minnesota’s final seven games.
Did Taylor have a good rookie year in 1998 with the Jaguars? Yes, he did. But did Moss have a better rookie season in 1998? Yes, he did.