Moss to Raiders

The Vikings have agreed to trade wide receiver Randy Moss to the Oakland Raiders, according to one published report and two other sources with league ties. In return, the Vikings are expected to get a starting linebacker, a first-round pick and a combination of one or two other mid- or late-round picks.

According to the St. Paul Pioneer Press and another source with league ties, the Vikings have agreed to trade wide receiver Randy Moss to the Oakland Raiders. The Pioneer Press reports the deal is for middle linebacker Napolean Harris and the No. 7 overall pick in the 2005 draft, along with a late-round pick in April.

Talks have been going on all week, a source told Viking Update, and the Vikings may have been aiming to get cornerback Charles Woodson, who was given the franchise tag by the Raiders earlier this week.

Another source told Viking Update there was a possibility of a mid-round pick next year instead of this year's late-round pick.

One of the sources told Viking Update early this afternoon that he expected the deal to be finalized tonight. However, the Pioneer Press' report, with quotes from Moss' agent, Dante DiTrapano, appears to confirm that the deal has been agreed upon. Trades cannot be officially announced until March 2, per league rules.

"In speaking with Moss, although he has a lot of ties to Minnesota and did not particularly want to be traded, he's very excited with the possibility of playing for Al Davis and being a part of the Raider tradition," DiTrapano told the Pioneer Press. "The Raiders have vowed to use Randy's talents the way they should be used, and that's to throw the ball vertically down the field.

"Randy's desire to win a Super Bowl is enhanced with a move to a team like the Raiders, because the Minnesota Vikings seem to be in a constant rebuilding mode."

The Vikings also have the 18th overall pick in this year's draft.

Harris was another highly touted first-round college prospect in 2002. He is signed through 2008 and his nearly $3 million in salary over the next four years wouldn't be hard for the Vikings to swallow. Harris will most likely be the starting middle linebacker, but he "weakened as the year went on," according to Silver and Black Illustrated's 2004 season in review. E.J. Henderson could move into a reserve role or could move to the outside, where he wouldn't be responsible for calling the defensive alignments.

The Vikings could use the No. 7 pick to snap up Moss' replacement, with USC's Mike Williams being an early favorite if he has a strong private workout on March 10.

Due largely to hamstring, back and ankle injuries, Moss had his worst season as a pro in 2004. He was limited to a decoy role in a couple games and inactive for three more, finishing the season with 49 catches for 767 yards and 13 touchdowns.

His season wasn't all bad, however. He caught a touchdown in 10 of the 11 games in which he played healthy and ranked third in the NFC with 13 receiving TDs, yet he was still left off the Pro Bowl team.

He moved into eighth place in NFL history with 90 career receiving touchdowns and a tie for 10th in NFL history with 53 combined touchdowns, matching Sonny Jurgensen and Charlie Taylor's career marks. Moss also holds the NFL record for most receiving yards (9,142) in a player's first seven seasons. Last year he also broke Cris Carter's team record with 41 career 100-yard games, good for ninth place in NFL history.

In 2003, Moss became the first player in NFL history to average 100 yards and one TD per game for 16 games.

In 109 regular-season games, he has 91 TDs, trailing only running back Marshall Faulk over that time span. He ends his Vikings career with 574 receptions for 9,142 yards — a 15.9-yard average — and 90 TDs.

Viking Update Top Stories