Randy Moss' biggest impact on Monday night may have come after the football game between the Vikings and Raiders.
Moss, the former Pro Bowl wide receiver with the Vikings, is second on the Vikings' all-time receiving chart with 574 receptions for 9,142 yards and 90 – all second to Cris Carter's team records. On Monday, however, Moss started his post-game comments tamely enough.
"I really tried to stay away from … getting caught up in the moment. I did not want to do that. For the whole week of practice, the plan was I tried to do my film study, tried to study how they were going to play, and we couldn't really get a real feel because they had a new coaching staff," Moss said. "We just wanted to come in here and concentrate on having some success from an offensive point. We got a lot of work to do. That is one thing that people were going to come and see Moss, but I just wanted to see how our offense was going to work as a whole."
Suffice it to say he wasn't happy with the Raiders offense, or at least the way it used him. He had one catch for 16 yards and was taken out of the game right after that.
"I was more pissed off because I have never in my career been taken out of a preseason game during a drive. That is funny to me, but I do not call the shots so it is just back to the drawing boards," Moss said. "I just wanted to be successful from an offensive standpoint. I didn't really care about scoring or catching balls as long as we moved that ball. I really wanted to concentrate on helping the team move up and down the field.
"The biggest thing is that we did some things wrong from a football standpoint and from a coaching standpoint. Like I said last week, we can hang our heads on this and enjoy our victory on the way back and then practice starts back up on Wednesday. I do not look forward to it, but then we are back to two-a-days."
Daunte Culpepper is no longer chucking balls to Moss. Culpepper is in Miami and Moss is in Oakland with Aaron Brooks, who went 1-for-6 on Monday night, as his quarterback. But Moss' big frustration from Monday was with the coaching staff, including new head coach Art Shell, that pulled him out of the game in the middle of a drive.
"I am going to keep that in house because it really kind of pissed me off to be taken out during a series. I wasn't really in the flow of the game. Just because of them throwing me a couple balls does not mean that I was in the flow of the game," Moss said. "Once our offense and all 11 of us can start moving the ball and getting in a rhythm then that is fine they can take me out of the game but we were just not in a rhythm. I can understand where he is coming from, but at the same time I love the game, love playing ball and I don't feel we were in a rhythm. He made a decision and he is the head coach and I have to live with it."
As for playing the Metrodome again, Moss said he appreciated all the "84" jerseys in the stands and was happy to see that the fans still appreciated him.
"It makes me feel good to know that I'm kind of still loved here no matter what with the bad blood that kind of spilled when I left. The people in the stands with the 84s on and what not, they understand now that I'm a Raider, and there is no coming back," he said. "But what I did here is something that I'll take to my grave as far as Red McCombs giving me the opportunity to be coached by a guy like Dennis Green, and coming in playing here in the Metrodome with wonderful fans. Right now it's just a memory, and I still have memories."
While it was former Vikings owner McCombs that made the confusing statement that he felt he had to trade Moss or fire then-head coach Mike Tice following the 2004 season, Moss seems to still appreciate McCombs.
"I think when the trade went down there was a lot of smoke in the air, and there were a lot of people shying away from questions and answers," he said. "I asked the question, ‘Why did it happen?' but I never got an answer. I let that go; I know this is a business. Football doesn't last forever. Like I said, one thing that I really appreciate is the opportunity that I was given here."
Moss Vents on Coaching, Trade
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