When Minnesota Vikings coach Brad Childress told his players Monday afternoon that Randy Moss(notes) would be released because “we want good people that are good football players, and this just doesn’t fit,” several of them nodded their approval. Though Childress isn’t especially popular in the locker room, some Vikings were on board with his decision to move on without Moss four weeks after the polarizing wideout was reacquired in a trade with the New England Patriots. Even before Sunday’s surreal address to the media… Moss had alienated some of his teammates with his brash, entitled behavior, most glaringly in an incident that occurred in the team’s locker room last Friday afternoon, Yahoo! Sports has learned.As is the team’s custom on Fridays, a local food establishment was invited to the training facility to serve a catered, post-practice meal in the locker room. In this case, a St. Paul restaurant that is a favorite of former Vikings center Matt Birk. As the proprietors helped serve chicken, ribs, pasta and other dishes to Vikings players, Moss paced up and down the serving line and loudly expressed his displeasure with the offerings. According to one player who witnessed the scene, Moss yelled, “What the fuck? Who ordered this crap? I wouldn’t feed this to my dog!”
Said the witness: “It was brutal. The truth is, he deserved to be cut after that. It was such an uncomfortable moment. You know that feeling where you just can tell someone feels so small? That’s what it was like being there. This wasn’t a chain – it was a mom-and-pop restaurant, and you could tell it was their best stuff. They had a special carving station set up, and there were players and other support staff lining up to eat it. And [Moss] is at his locker saying, ‘You know, I used to have to eat that crap – but now I’ve got money.’ You just felt so sad for them. I had never seen anyone treated like that. And by the way, the food was actually really good.”
I’ll assume for the sake of our discussion here that this story is true. And if it is, I’m not about to defend Randy Moss. I’m a big believer that you judge somebody by how they treat the so called “little people.” Waiters, cabbies, strippers, mom & pop caterers, bloggers and the like. But that’s not the point of this blog. Because… newsflash!… no one ever said Moss was St. Thomas frickin’ Aquinas. Not even here at the Stool where we’ve been defending Randy non-stop for 3+ years. Not because he’s not a dink of a human being. He probably is. But because he managed to keep a lid on the hot cauldron of juvenile behavior bubbling under the surface the whole time he was here. And now less than a month out of Foxboro and Mt. Randsuvius is erupting left and right. Belittling the coach, quitting on his team and insulting little old ladies who run BBQ joints.
But what’s funny about this story is that it doesn’t make Moss look bad nearly so much as the Vikings organization. It just points out what a rudderless, leaderless, backwardsass organization they are. Because you can’t tell me that if Moss were averaging 8 catches and 100+ yards a game for them that they wouldn’t have brushed this whole incident off as “Randy being Randy” or something. Instead they’re trying to act like they have higher standards than everybody else and they only sign players who shit ice cream. Really, Chilly? Where was all that moralizing when you had to beg/ bribe your quarterback to show up to camp or found out he was a serial harrasser of his female co-workers? The Warrior could’ve raped that lady on the buffet table while her husband was made to watch so long as he throws 3 TDs for you. Minnesota didn’t cut Randy Moss because he’s a jerk. They cut him because they can’t handle him the way the Pats did.
PS. If Randy tried this stuff in Foxboro, someone would’ve just said “Hey, shut up. Order something from Red Robin if you don’t like it but leave the old coots alone.” End of discussion. But something tells me there are a lot more Vikings organizations in the NFL than Patriots organizations. Thank God.
PPS: This is not the way to handle the situation either: