Randy Moss is going back to where it all began. On Wednesday, October 6, Moss was traded from the New England Patriots to the Minnesota Vikings, the team that originally drafted him in 1998.
Moss made an immediate impact with the Vikings, transforming their offense into what was at the time, the greatest statistical offensive season for any team ever.
Despite the immediate success, Moss had an up and down career with the Vikings, both on the field and off. Here are the best five moments from Moss' first stint with the Vikings.
You can talk all you want about off the field troubles or about pretending to moon the Green Bay Packers fans. Or you could talk about how Minnesota Vikings fans almost ran him out of town and were happy to see him go. But the fact is Randy Moss played his first seven seasons of his NFL career in Minnesota and he went to the Pro Bowl five times.
Though sometimes players wear out their welcome in certain cities, there is no doubt that the first Randy Moss era in Minnesota goes down as a success. Moss provided a constant threat for the Vikings year in and year out, causing a nightmare for opposing defenses.
The incredible talent possessed by Randy Moss helped the Vikings make it to two NFC Championship games. Moss failed to make the Pro Bowl in 2001 after signing the biggest contract ever given to a wide receiver, earning himself a few critics.
However, he bounced back with consecutive Pro-Bowl appearances in 2002 and 2003, before an injury slowed down his 2004 season, preventing him from making the Pro Bowl for just the second time in his career.
No matter what was going on off the field, the Vikings always had a Pro-Bowl wide receiver in the lineup, making them always a contender to come out of the NFC.
The 21st overall pick of the 1998 NFL Draft, Randy Moss burst onto the NFL scene in a big way during his first game as a pro.
In Week 1 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Randy Moss showed the league what he was capable of.
Moss would make his first NFL reception, an 11-yard pass from QB Brad Johnson. What followed were moments of brilliance, Moss would make his first touchdown catch, a 48-yard acrobatic grab, which he juggled three times before securing it. He would add a 31-yard TD catch, and finished his first NFL game with four catches for 95 yards and two touchdowns.
Moss introduced himself to the Vikings faithful by jumping into the stands after his touchdown catch, and gave the Vikings a taste of what to look forward to.
In Week 5 of the 1998 season, rookie Randy Moss would have the chance to introduce himself to the entire country. The Vikings were traveling to their division rivals, the Green Bay Packers, on Monday Night Football.
Randy Moss would relish the big stage as he put on another terrific performance. Moss started the game with a 75-yard touchdown catch on the Vikings first possession of the game. While the play was nullified due to a holding penalty it was a sign of things to come for the Vikings.
Moss would haul in touchdown catches of 52 and 44 yards. He finished the game with five receptions for 190 yards and two touchdowns, letting the whole country know how good he was.
By 2003, Randy Moss already had a handful of personal awards. He won the Rookie of the Year in 1998, and had already been to four Pro Bowls, along with a Pro-Bowl MVP award.
His biggest milestone came in 2003 when Moss finished the season with 111 receptions for 1,632 yards and 17 touchdowns. Not only did he equal or set new personal bests in all three categories but those numbers made him just the second wide receiver (behind Jerry Rice) to play more then 16 games and average over 100 yards receiving in every game.
Moss' 2003 season sent a wake up call to fans across the country to let everyone know that we were watching a player who the had the potential to be one of the best receivers of all time.
Randy Moss announced to the world he was one of the best receivers in the league on Thanksgiving of his rookie season.
The Dallas Cowboys were hosting the Vikings in the Cowboys annual late afternoon Thanksgiving contest. By Week 12 of 1998, the league knew of the rookie phenom Randy Moss. Many people were wondering if the Cowboys would be able to contain the star wide receiver.
Randy Moss took the opportunity to show the world of his big play ability. On the Vikings first possession he caught a 51-yard touchdown catch from QB Randall Cunningham.
When looking at the number of receptions Moss had during the Thanksgiving day game, one would think that the Cowboys kept Moss in check and that he had a quiet game. After all, Moss finished the game with just three receptions. The issue for the Cowboys was that the first 51-yard reception was followed by two other 56-yard receptions, with all three of them going for touchdowns.
Moss finished the game with three catches for 163 yards and three TDs, and the whole country knew of the superstar named Randy Moss.