In early 2007, there were strong rumors making the rounds regarding the possible addition to the Green Bay Packers of receiver Randy Moss. Quarterback Brett Favre was thought to be lobbying heavily for the move, and at one point we heard that Favre was convinced that Moss would be coming to town. After Moss was traded by the Raiders to the Pats for a fourth-round pick and a half-gallon of chili, Favre was unable to conceal his displeasure.
Now, with Moss unsigned and believed to be unhappy with the terms proposed by the Patriots, Adam Schefter of NFL Network suggests that the Packers might pursue Moss as a way to persuade Favre to come back for another season.
It's an intriguing concept, but we're not sure how realistic it is. The Packers have Donald Driver, Greg Jennings, James Jones, and Koren Robinson. Then again, the Pats had a crowded house at the position a year ago when they acquired Moss, and Bill Belichick and company didn't bat an eye when the time came to pull the trigger.
Then there's the fact that Favre is a year-to-year proposition in Green Bay. After 2008, Moss could be a pricey luxury that the team can't fully utilize.
The bigger question, as we see it, is whether Moss is merely trying to scare up a big-money offer that would then be used to leverage the Pats. If he has agreed to give the Patriots a chance to match any proposals that he might receive elsewhere, why should the Packers or the Cowboys or the Eagles or anyone negotiate the contract that Moss ultimately will sign in New England?
Frankly, we think that Moss has badly misplayed this one. By creating the impression that he is committed to staying in New England, teams aren't going to be likely to make him a big-money offer during the early days of free agency. And if he ever convinces folks that he's serious about leaving, the wallets that currently are wide open will be quickly closing.
In hindsight, the best opportunity for Moss in Green Bay was a year ago. His presence likely would have been enough to propel the Pack to a Super Bowl win. And then Favre could have retired and Moss could have hit the market and other teams would have believed that he was serious about moving on.
Maybe he would have then signed an Adalius Thomas-style long-term deal with the Patriots.