How Is the Media Reacting to Randy Moss' Brash Media Day Comments?
Media day at Super Bowl XLVII was actually a relatively subdued affair compared to the chaos that sometimes surrounds the event.
However, that doesn't mean that there wasn't some controversy, and the majority of that was supplied by a player who is intimately familiar with the term.
So what did Moss say and how is the media replying? Read on and find out.
As ESPN reports, the response that really got the ball rolling came when Moss was asked by reporters about his place in football history.
"Now that I'm older, I do think I'm the greatest receiver to ever do it," Moss said at Super Bowl media day in New Orleans. "I don't really live on numbers. I really live on impact and what you're able to do out on the field," he said Tuesday. "I really think I'm the greatest receiver to ever play this game."
Moss wasn't done yet. According to Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com Moss went out to complain about his role in San Francisco, and the 35-year-old was brusque when asked if he's like to return to the Bay Area next season.
"I don't like my role," Moss said Tuesday at Super Bowl Media Day. "I really don't. I like to be out there playing football. One thing I've really had to understand is being a decoy." I understand my presence out on the field, that I don't always have to touch the ball to help the offense score touchdowns," Moss said. "Like I said, I don't really like that, but it's something that I'm used to. I had to grow to understand it."
"I do want to play another year," Moss said.
With the 49ers?
"I don't know about that. Next question."
Jerry Rice Responds
Not surprisingly, one of the first players was respond to Moss' comments was the man that most consider to be the greatest wide receiver in NFL history.
Jerry Rice appeared on NFL Live Tuesday and was asked about Moss' comments, and to no one's shock Rice doesn't agree with Moss' pecking order at wideout according to Frank Schwab of Yahoo! Sports.
"I’m very surprised Randy Moss used that in those words, that he’s the greatest," Rice said on ESPN's "NFL Live." "You’d never hear me say I’m the greatest football player to ever play the game. I let my body of work speak for itself, and I think I was able to be very productive on the football field.
"You have to look at the stats, you have to look at how you impacted the game, and it’s all about winning this right here, this is it, the Super Bowl, and I was fortunate to win three," said Rice, who was ranked No. 1 on the NFL Network's ranking of the top 100 players of all time in 2010. "Randy he finally has a chance to prove himself this weekend, and I wish him the best."
Mike Wise, Washington Post
Sportswriter Mike Wise of The Washington Post had a front-row seat for Moss' comments on Tuesday, but as Wise wrote later that day it didn't make the comments any easier to swallow.
"One man’s ability to still be so out of touch with reality in the latter stages of his career took the cake for preposterous statements. Randy Moss, come on down.
Beyond the obvious numbers — Rice has 7,000 more receiving yards, three more Super Bowl titles, one more Super Bowl MVP and he has actually led the league in yards and catches, which Moss never did — Moss didn’t even finish running his routes for a good three years. So caught up in himself, he needed Tom Brady and the Patriots to resurrect a Hall-of-Fame career."
Wise's sentiments were apparently shared by a couple of Hall-of-Fame players that Wise spoke to in the Big Easy.
“Randy Moss is out of his mind,” Shannon Sharpe told me later. “I mean, you can debate every position in the NFL. You can look at quarterback, running back, who the greatest linebacker is. But there is only one position you can’t debate, and that’s the wide receiver position. It’s Jerry Rice. It will always be Jerry Rice."
“It’s important that he thinks that because he’s playing Sunday. But once Randy leaves the game, he’ll sit back and realize like I really recognized,” Michael Irvin said, his voice growing in volume. “It’s okay to say it: Jerry Rice is the greatest of all time.”
Will Brinson, CBS Sports
You'll notice a theme running through this article from all the sportswriters that penned pieces in regards to Moss' claims.
The gist of that theme is, "Moss is a great wide receiver, but Rice he ain't."
Will Brinson of CBS Sports was no exception.
Moss is an otherworldly talent and one of the greatest wideouts the NFL has ever seen. But the greatest? Naw. That's Rice, who wholeheartedly disagreed with Moss' assessment.
"Put my numbers up against his numbers," Rice told ESPN's Adam Schefter when he heard about Moss' comments.
It's a slam-the-mic-moment and it holds up: Rice ranks first in NFL history in receiving yards, receptions and receiving touchdowns. Moss does not.
For as great as Moss will go down in history -- and for as great as he was at Media Day on Tuesday -- he was just wrong when it came to his assessment of the greatest wideout ever.
Mike Sando, ESPN
So, the overwhelming consensus is that the media figured that Moss was guzzling goofy juice before he took to the podium and anointed himself the greatest wide receiver of all time.
However, not everyone was so quick to laugh off the notion altogether.
Granted, ESPN's Sando didn't dispute that Rice is all but certainly the greatest at his position to ever play the game, but as much as any sportswriter in the nation Sando at least offered a defense of sorts for Moss' comments.
If Rice had the greatest career of any receiver in NFL history, which seems indisputable based on longevity and raw numbers, Moss at his best was arguably the most feared.
Moss was faster. I think he was more athletic. If both receivers were to line up on opposite sides of the formation while in their prime, defenses would face a dilemma. I think they would fear Rice more on shorter and intermediate routes. I think they would fear Moss more on deeper routes.
Reaction in the Twitterverse
In today's era of social media reaction to statements such as those made by Moss happens in an instant, and ever since Moss made his proclamation Twitter has seen a steady stream of opinions on the subject.
Here are some of the highlights.
Randy Moss is NOT the greatest receiver of all time. He had THE ABILITY to be the greatest. Big difference. Peerless when he wanted to be.
— Michael Smith (@michaelsmith) January 29, 2013
If you think Randy Moss is the best WR of all-time, I'm going to guess you're under 20 years old or a delusional fan. #Rice80
— Matt Miller (@nfldraftscout) January 29, 2013
Randy Moss proclaims himself "the greatest WR to ever play this game". In related news, Randy Moss is full of it.
— Gary Davenport (@IDPManor) January 29, 2013
Randy Moss: "I'm the greatest receiver of all time."Manti Te'o: "I totally believe that."
— Rick Reilly (@ReillyRick) January 29, 2013
If Randy Moss was the best receiver of all-time, why were teams itching to dump him? cbsprt.co/MossNo1
— CBSSports.com (@CBSSports) January 29, 2013
I'm sorry but what RandyMoss did in, say, '98 and '07 was more incredible than any single JerryRice season.
— Skip Bayless (@RealSkipBayless) January 30, 2013
— Nick Caron (@nicholascaron) January 30, 2013
Jerry Rice wanted so bad to take the high road vs. Randy Moss. However, he can't let Randy say he's the best wr of all time. Stats don't lie
— Rob Goldberg (@TheRobGoldberg) January 29, 2013