Moss Speaks Up, Speaks Out

When he arrived at Mankato on Friday, Randy Moss wasn't talking. That changed Saturday, but it was the same confident talk that has made some love Moss and some hate him.

There's something about Randy Moss and microphones. They don't tend to get along well.

After a 1999 playoff loss to the Giants, VU stood by as Moss answered 20 minutes of pointed questions from New York media before breaking down and saying out of frustration that he'll win a Super Bowl ring, whether it's with the Vikings or not. Those comments made friction between Moss and players like Todd Steussie and, when push came to shove, Dennis Green opted to stick with his cash cow and let Steussie go.

Last year, berated by media types who said he only plays when he wants to, Moss went on record agreeing with it -- which many feel cost him a trip to the Pro Bowl.

So when the media surrounded Moss Saturday, many of us thought we'd hear a different Randy this time around. Nah.

Moss was Moss, saying he loves Mike Tice's Randy Ratio idea, saying it should have come sooner.

When asked about the prediction from Tice that he'll see the ball on 40 percent of plays, Moss told VU, "If we had done that my rookie year, we'd have some jewelry (as in Super Bowl rings) around here."

When asked if he's changed because of the leadership role thrust on him and the "I play when I want to" stigma, he remained consistent.

"Nothing is going to change for me, no matter what is said or written," Moss told VU. "I just want to go out there, catch touchdowns and do whatever I can to get a Super Bowl ring."

Coaches may change, players may change, even owners may change, but Moss it appears will remain the same -- like it or not.

* One face who wasn't at camp Saturday was TE Johnny McWilliams, cut loose by the team late Friday. McWilliams was going to be a longshot to make the team anyway, but the Vikings opted to give him a chance to hook on with another team. The Vikings have seven tight ends in camp and will likely keep four of them.
* Tice decided to show his players that he was willing to suffer with them by running the required 14 40-yard dashes at the end of morning practice. The result? He finished, but pulled a hamstring with two remaining. After getting hoots and catcalls from players when he started running the sprints, he earned a measure of respect by finishing them -- much less finishing them while injured.
* The Vikings had to do something painfully familiar from the malaise days of last season -- shuffle the offensive line. With Bryant McKinnie still holding out and Lewis Kelly restricted with a pulled quad muscle in his leg, the first-unit offense had to run with Everett Lindsay at left tackle and Chris Liwienski at RT.
* McKinnie Holdout Watch: Day 2 -- It looks as though the McKinnie Watch will continue well into next week at this point, with no progress made. But, just as VU reported yesterday that it was a positive sign that the pick behind the Vikings (Dallas safety Roy Williams) signed, Buffalo signed OT Mike Williams -- the only comparable tackle in the draft -- Saturday, and perhaps that can get the Vikings and McKinnie closer to a market number for his services.
* Believe in karma? With Major League Baseball's season still on (for now), if there isn't a work stoppage, the Vikings-Bears game Oct. 27 could be delayed or moved because that date would coincide with the seventh game of the World Series. While most people don't think the Twins have a shot, they will make the playoffs and, as they proved in 1987 and again in 1991, if they get in a series with home field advantage, anything can happen. Just a thought.

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