When you go down the list of the best wide receivers of all time, Randy Moss definitely appears on that list. But sitting unquestionably atop that list is none other than Jerry Rice. What Rice may have lacked in speed and size, he more than made up for with his work ethic and will to become better. But I truly believe that if he had any semblance of the same kind of work ethic that Rice did, Randy Moss could have far and away been the best of all time. His measurable and athleticism were unmatched and his physical traits were top notch. Let’s now take a little look at the best that never was.
Right from his childhood in Virginia, Moss was an incredible athlete in a number of different sports. And once he got to high school, he was even better. While he excelled at things like basketball and track and field as well, it was football that was his best. Many called him one of the best high school football players of all time. Many different high profile colleges came looking at him and he looked to have his pick of schools. Unfortunately for Moss, he would be involved in an altercation at his high school that resulted in a little bit of jail time, which scared off some of the teams.
Fortunately for him, Florida State still wanted him, so he enrolled there. However, his off field issues continued to rear their ugly head as he tested positive for marijuana, which led him to be released from the team. He eventually settled on playing at Marshall, a school where he dominated and was setting records left and right. Leading into the 1998 Draft, Moss had one of the best pro days of all time (including a 4.25 40 yard dash, a 39 inch vertical and catching nearly every ball thrown his way), but teams were still worried about his work ethic and off the field issues.
Come draft day, he wasn’t selected until the 21st overall pick and was passed on by a number of teams due to his off field issues. Before the draft, he said all the teams that passed on him during the draft would be sorry they did so. And I would have to agree with him. He is 3rd all-time in receiving yards and is 2nd all-time in receiving touchdowns. While those are clearly amazing numbers, I have a hard time believing he couldn’t have been the best of all time is he simply would have improved his attitude and worked a little harder.
He is quite far back of Rice in both of those categories, but he was a much better athletic specimen than Rice and in his prime, Moss was nearly uncoverable as he was not only fast, but could jump extremely high and was also towering over opposing DBs at 6’4. If he just put in a little more work, there is no telling how good Moss would’ve been, hell, he might have been seen as the best player of all time.