Moss Named Top Player

Many Vikings fans considered Randy Moss the best wide receiver in the league, but a Sporting News writer went a step further.

Fox analyst John Madden has said that if you took out quarterbacks, he thinks Vikings receiver Randy Moss is the best player in the NFL.

The Sporting News went Madden one better when it recently named Moss the NFL's best player in its listing of the top 100 players in the league.

"His unmatched skills and role in the Minnesota offense create nightmare matchup problems," The Sporting News blurb said.

During the first three years of TSN's top 100 poll, league personnel voted. This time Dan Pompei, TSN's senior writer, performed the duties.

One of the key criterions for Pompei in compiling his rankings is a player's value to his team.

Moss was joined on the TSN list by three other Vikings, including Cris Carter (No. 18), Daunte Culpepper (No. 23) and Matt Birk (No. 56). The Buccaneers and Titans led the way with seven players apiece among the top 100.

One player who did not make it was former Vikings defensive lineman John Randle, who signed with Seattle during the offseason. Considered one of the game's top lineman only a few years ago, Randle's fall off has been noted by many.

"At 33, Randle clearly has lost some of the quickness that made him a unique defensive lineman," TSN said. "That's why he's now with the Seahawks instead of the Vikings."

After Moss, the top 10 goes like this: Packers quarterback Brett Favre; Rams QB Kurt Warner; Colts QB Peyton Manning; Rams running back Marshall Faulk; Colts running back Edgerrin James; Buccaneers defensive tackle Warren Sapp; Cowboys guard Larry Allen; Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis; and Titans defensive end Jevon Kearse.

So how did Allen get ahead of a player such as Lewis, who is seen as one of the league's best? According to the TSN criterion, "Each player's talent level was compared with others at his position, then players were slotted at different positions based on value to their teams."

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