The Minnesota Vikings have been the center of attention in the media this week. The Brett Favre-Jenn Sturger text messaging saga has taken a turn, and it could pose as a distraction for the Purple and Gold.
The Vikes also made a trade with the Patriots to acquire Randy Moss, who returns to Minnesota after six years with the Raiders and New England. Anything that distracts Brett and takes him off of his game can effect the entire offense, especially his new top weapon.
This is a must-win game for Brad Childress and his boys. They are 1-2 and sit two games behind Chicago for the division lead.
Randy Moss was brought in to change that, and he isn't unfamiliar with Rex Ryan's defense. In Week 2—as a member of the Patriots—Moss could only muster up two receptions for 38 yards, but made a great one-handed grab for a 34-yard touchdown after burning the Jets' Darrelle Revis.
Revis accused Moss of taking plays off, which has been a big knock on Randy throughout his career. Randy countered those comments by saying he respects Revis and that he expects Revis to show him mutual respect.
As for Brett Favre and Randy Moss clicking, I don't think there will be any problems there. Favre doesn't let anything distract him, so something as small as this issue will not have an effect on his play tonight. Favre loves having a big target to throw to, and that is partly why I think he was struggling without Sidney Rice.
Against a defense as potent as the Jets, it is hard to predict what to expect from a single player. As familiar as Randy is with the Jets, they are just as used to seeing him. In the game tonight, expect a lot of balls to be thrown Moss' way, and I would expect him to pull in six or seven catches for about 80 yards and a touchdown.
He is a great red zone threat with his height and long arms, and he is as good as it gets at working the sidelines while keeping his feet in bounds.
However, I wouldn't place too much emphasis on Moss' performance tonight.
Rest of the Season
I am going to break down the remainder of this season into two parts—without Sidney Rice, and with him—because Randy's production will be very different once Rice is back in the lineup.
Without Sid in there, Randy will still produce. He will still put up solid numbers, scoring touchdowns, giving the Vikings a much better offense. But teams are going to be able to—or at least attempt to—take Moss out of the game by double-teaming him and giving corners safety help over the top.
Once Rice is back, it will free up Randy a lot.
When you put Sidney Rice and Randy Moss on the field at the same time, defenses are going to have a lot of match up problems. Both of these guys are over 6'4" and have game changing ability.
You can't just focus on one of them because the other will beat you. Add Percy Harvin in the slot—where he is most dangerous—and you have mismatches all over the field. Oh yeah, and they have a guy named Adrian Peterson.
Moss is going to put up big numbers once Rice comes back and he and Brett gain chemistry. I'm not even a Vikings fan, and I am excited to see what this offense can do at full strength.
Even at age 33, Randy Moss is a force to be reckoned with, and will continue to be for any team he plays on for the rest of his career.