No Such Nonsense

A little of this, that and... what was I talking about again? It's TV, sports, pop culture and politics - all the stuff that really matters in life.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

A Thing of Beauty

It's no secret I don't like Tom Brady. I may have, in the past, referred to him in some less-than-glowing terms. I may have suggested that he has a deal with, or in fact is, the devil. Bill Belichick, also evil. And the insistence of the New England Patriots on pretending they are underdogs, when they are clearly the epitome of overdogs, is deeply nauseating. The New England Patriots annoy me.

So I'm not typically the one to suggest you devote too much time to buying into the Brady-Belichick hype machine.

But if you haven't watched a New England game this season (hell, if you haven't watched a football game this season), do yourself a favour and catch a game - any game - featuring the Pats this year. I can guarantee you'll see something special.

His name is Randy Moss.

Good grief, he's good.

We always knew he was talented. He was always capable of acrobatic feats, even as he was sometimes accused of dogging it when the rest of his team let him down. Nonetheless, in seven seasons in Minnesota, he scored an average of 13 TDs a season. He averaged 83 receptions a season for the Vikes, and had 111 in 2003 alone. That's good.

How good? Well, let's compare him to Mr. "I'm the greatest WR, like, ever" Terrell Owens. Let's pick TO's 7 best years, scattered over his up and down career. By my reckoning, TOs 7 best years produce 11 TDs a season and 85 receptions, with a high-point of 100 receptions in 2002. No so far from Moss' numbers, really.

Now on the the real competition: The greatest single season Jerry Rice (the actual greatest wide receiver ever, and a craptacular tv dancer) ever had was 122 receptions, 15 TDs in 1995. He did this with Hall-of-Famer Steve Young at pivot. His highest single season total for TDs? Well, that'd be 22, back in 1987, with Hall-0f-Famer Joe Montana at QB.

No question, Moss has a way to go to equal Jerry. But here's the thing: Jerry spent his peak years working with two of the best QBs of their era. As a team, they made each other better and cultivated mutual legends. Not unlike Marvin Harrison and Peyton Manning, say.

And Moss? Well, in Minnesota, the guy throwing the ball to him all those years was Daunte Culpepper - a QB so brilliant he couldn't even earn the starting job in Miami. His other QBs have been Josh McCown, Kerry Collins, Andrew Walter and Aaron Brooks. Not so much with the Hall of Fame.

But now, for the first time, Moss is working with an elite QB. Yes, he's the devil, but I never said Brady couldn't play. I said he wasn't as good as his rep - but who could be? Well, with Randy Moss at the other end of the passing route, Brady may live up to even his biggest boosters' expectation.

In 3 games this year, Moss has 22 receptions for 5 TDs - a whole bunch of them coming out of double coverage. Even if he slows down the pace, he looks set to obliterate some serious records. The most important thing? The closing minutes' shot from last week's game showing Moss smiling and shaking hands with his coach on the sidelines. Sitting beside Brady and laughing.

A happy, healthy Randy Moss. It's going to be a scary season for the defenders in the AFC. Do yourself a favour and check it out.

5 Comments:

  • At 3:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    How is it possible NOT to like...wait LOVE Tom Brady! He is perfect in every way and does not even have an ego that pisses people off. He is P E R F E C T!!!! I guess jealously can cause anyone to hate him, but I would just find it too difficult not to adore this man.

     
  • At 5:54 PM, Blogger Jenster said…

    Well, I'd say that it is possible to dislike Brady if one doesn't swallow the media hype that has annointed him as the best QB in the league and looks at the fact that the Pats are a dominating team with him, but not because of him. The fact that he has Superbowl MVP awards that belong to his D E F E N S E bugs the heck out of me.

    Can't say I'm jealous. Just irritated.

    And you can bet your ass Brady has a big ego (ALL quarterbacks do!)- he just knows how to play the humble superstar for the fans and the media. That's his true pro-bowl talent.

     
  • At 6:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Brady winning due to his defense is ridiculous! Where were his weapons on offense? He made it to 2 of those 3 Superbowls with NO probowlers on his side of the ball and Antoine Smith as his Running Back. This year with weapons, we see him elevated to yet another level. Brady is the best and the hype about him is there because he deserves it!

     
  • At 7:13 AM, Blogger Jenster said…

    How many field goals did Adam Vinatieri kick in those 3 games? Or were those all about Brady too?

    The defense didn't win those games? Ty Law running in an interception for a TD against Kurt Warner - meaningless, I guess? How many TD passes did Brady throw in that game? Exactly one. Brady was 16 of 27 for 145 yards. Yup those are soul-stirring MVP numbers. Especially when it was a late game interception that sealed the deal for the Pats.

    Mike Vrabel stripping the ball from Jake Delhomme - and then coming back as a tight end in the 4th quarter to score? After Brady had given up a critical interception that let Carolina take the lead? M-V-P!

    And Philly would have scored 40 points in their game if not for the combined efforts of Samuel, Harrison, Bruschi and Vrabel. At least that year the MVP went to Branch and not Brady.

    And speaking of Branch, we wouldn't consider him an offensive weapon? Let's ask Matt Hasselbeck.

    Still I have to admit there is one big reason the Pats won those Superbowls... but his name is Bill Belichick, not Tom Brady. Belichick and Weiss built a system that plays to Brady's strengths and Brady did well in it.

     
  • At 12:06 PM, Blogger Marky Mark said…

    Wow they were good last night! Did you see that laser that Brady threw into the corner of the end zone that only Moss could possibly catch? A thing of beauty.

     

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