A game-breaking player is a dynamic most team's throughout the National Football League covet. In many cases, this type of player comes with baggage and an ego to boot. Sounding somewhat eerie, this is the situation in Minnesota with wide receiver Randy Moss.
Early offseason speculation places Moss on the trading block. While hard to fathom how the Vikings' organization could plot the move of such a presence, the timing may never be better.
Since the end of the season, change on the offensive side of the ball has been an underlying factor in Minnesota. With the departure of offensive coordinator Scott Linehan and receivers coach Charlie Baggett to Miami, more changes are expected as the offseason progresses.
Those changes could continue forward with a potential dealing of Moss. With Moss entering the fourth year of his eight-year contract, that is becoming less of an issue. While his cap hit would be substantial, about $9 million if he was traded this offseason, it quickly is becoming a salary issue which could force the tight fist of owner Red McCombs.
"The negative impact which (Randy) Moss creates has grown on many of us within the organization," a team source said. "Dealing with him, his issues, his injuries and the separate set of rules pertaining to him have run their course and the issues will need to be addressed this offseason.
"If this team and organization are going to take the next step, we have to be on the same page, from the owner on down as to what it will take to field a championship-caliber team."
Rumors quickly spread throughout the league that the Vikings had decided to deal the troubled but talented receiver during organizational meetings following the 2004 season. As the organization has discussed changes to the coaching staff and noted areas to immediately improve the roster, a decision on Moss has not been determined.
"There hasn't been the discussion where as an organization we say it's time to deal Randy (Moss). In initial discussions, which haven't been lengthy or in depth at this time, we basically are looking at options to improve the team," the source said. "Moss is a player which has significant value and could bring us a valuable package of prospects to remedy some of our woes, especially on the defensive side of the ball."
By all appearances, the Vikings' front office is careful in discussing the future, one potentially without Moss.
"We don't want to trade Moss — he may be the ultimate game-breaking player and those types of players don't come along every day. Dealing a player of that caliber could set an organization back years," the source added. "I would never say never, but we'll continue to evaluate our situation and do what is best for the Minnesota Vikings."
League sources and reports claim the Baltimore Ravens, Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins have inquired or will show an interest in the veteran wide receiver. While at this time we can assume the rumors have some form of merit, as there appears to be some talk regarding the player, either with the Vikings or through third parties.
"We talk all the time with other teams and front-office personnel. I won't comment directly if any specific team has contacted us about Randy Moss, but he is a player that garners a lot of attention, especially from teams that would like to obtain a dynamic, such as he is."
Many Considerations In Trading Moss
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