After the Carolina Panthers game Week 14 and a less-than-stellar performance by Randy Moss, the sports media launched a barrage of attacks at Randy Moss, accusing him of “dogging it” and “taking plays off.” I kind of walked the fence on the issue and noted that Moss was very “un-Moss-like” but that the locker room was behind him. Kevin Faulk, Tom Brady, and especially Bill Belichick were firmly behind Moss after the game and for the entire season. We all know that Randy had a back injury that could have limited him, but there was much more to the story.
Randy Moss played most of the season with a separated shoulder. According to reports, he injured his shoulder Week 5 during the Denver Broncos game but didn’t miss any games this season. He was on the injury report for a little while with what was just listed as a “shoulder injury,” but its severity was not known. Despite playing most of the season with a hurt shoulder and back, Moss finished the year with 83 catches for 1,264 yards and 13 touchdowns. Not bad. With an injury like this, Moss would probably not have been able to extend his injured arm fully and thus could not make those spectacular catches we have grown accustomed to. His injury was not completely disclosed (no surprise with Belichick), which was likely to protect Moss from defenders targeting his injury and for Moss to still command the attention of two defenders. He likely was never intended to get the ball numerous times because of his injury, he knew it, and thus was just a decoy. Either way, everyone should give credit to Moss for his toughness.
So will the sports pundits retract their statements and apologize? Will local writers Dan Shaughnessy apologize to Moss after articles calling him out? How about you Bob Ryan? Cris Carter? Peter King from SI called him “soft.” Any apologies? Guys? Oh wait, those are just crickets. It shows goes to show that you never have all of the pieces of the puzzle when it comes to what’s going on in an NFL game unless you’re a player or a coach. Maybe these clowns will think twice before attacking a player….yeah probably not.