San Francisco wide receiver Randy Moss might not be the premier number one receiver anymore, but he's quielty contributed to the 49ers' success, being content on taking a back seat and flying under the radar in 2012.
The 49ers took a chance on bringing him in, when most thought he'd go the way of Terrell Owens or Chad Johnson, a player with trouble written all over him, past his prime and just sticking around to collect a paycheck.
That was the story of Randy Moss since he was abruptly traded from the New England Patriots to the Minnesota Vikings in 2010 after reportedly bumping a few heads and complaining about his contract status, among other things. It was a nice run with the Patriots, but as time went on, the Moss immaturity that we've seen before again reared it's ugly head.
In his return to Minnesota, the team got to see the troublesome version of Moss almost immediately. 4 weeks later, he was cut. Tennessee took a shot, claiming him off waivers where he would be all but invisible for the rest of the season.
2011 saw his retirement, an end to record-setting career, yet a sketchy one as well. But Randy just couldn't stay away, announcing his return to football on February 13, 2012.
As the media and fans all smirked when Moss and his agent were claiming that he's in full physical form and ready to return, he proved them all wrong as the 49ers liked what they saw and signed him to a one-year contract.
His season with the team has been a quiet one... in a good way. These days, he's the wiley veteran with tons of experience and advice to share with the younger players. He's cool, calm and stays out of the spotlight. He know his role and is content with it.
“A lot has been made about Randy being a certain way, but he’s one of the best teammates I’ve ever had — that any of us has ever had,” said wide receiver Kyle Williams via the New York Times. “The emergence of Michael Crabtree isn’t by accident. He’s learned a lot from Randy.”
“Randy is one of the reasons that Crabtree has really developed this year,” safety Donte Whitner said.
And in less than two weeks, Moss gets to return to the Super Bowl, an event he was an integral part of with the 2007 Patriots, and for a fleeting moment, caught what was supposed to be the game-winning touchdown. Things didn't go well after that, we all know.
Now he might just get that ring after all.