Okay, I'm sure that you Viking fans have been waiting for a thread where you could express your point of views, so here's some fuel. This was E-mailed to me from a Packerbacker buddie of mine, and I'm sure there isn't much to it but read for your self.
Vikings insider: Trading Moss worth talking about softly
Kevin Seifert, Star Tribune
January 16, 2005 VANA0116
The whispers already are beginning. Whenever the Vikings' season ends -- be it today, next week or even Feb. 6 after Super Bowl XXXIX -- the Vikings will address a question they hoped would never surface: Is Randy Moss worth the trouble?
Like every NFL team, the Vikings hold a series of personnel meetings before developing an offseason plan for improving the roster. For seven years, their fundamental starting point was always the same: building around Moss, their once-in-a-lifetime receiving talent. Now, after a two-week stretch in which Moss has embarrassed the organization countless times, that position might change.
While the odds remain that Moss will return in 2005, there are highly placed members of the organization who are exasperated with him. At the very least, they plan to initiate a substantive internal discussion about Moss and his future with the franchise this offseason.
The question remains whether the Moss sideshow will help or hinder the Vikings' development. To be sure, however, team officials will at least establish a price for Moss' services before the free agency/trade period begins in March.
Despite some misinformed reports, the Vikings held an identical discussion last season when the Miami Dolphins, among other teams, inquired about Moss' availability. At the time, the Vikings landed on a king's ransom: three first-round draft choices.
That price is too steep for any NFL team. The Vikings were the last sucker to give up so much for one player, and we all know how the Herschel Walker trade worked out.
Now, the landscape has changed somewhat. Moss is a year older, fell victim to the first serious injury of his career and has reverted to the public deportment of his earlier years that many thought he had left behind.
Most important, the salary cap implications are more favorable for a trade now. Here is the upshot: Moss would count nearly the same amount on the Vikings' 2005 salary cap whether he is on the team or not.
If he remains with the Vikings, Moss' cap number will be $9.5 million. If he is traded, he will count $9 million on the 2005 cap and then be wiped off the Vikings' salary cap books for the final three seasons of the eight-year, $75 million extension he signed in July 2001.
Just as important to a financially strapped franchise, the Vikings would be off the hook for paying the remaining cash on Moss' contract -- $36.5 million, including his 2005 base salary of $7.25 million. Under NFL rules, Moss' new team would be responsible for paying the cash even though he would count on the Vikings' salary cap in 2005.
At the conclusion of their personnel meetings, then, the Vikings will not have decided whether to trade him or not. Rather, they will have determined how exorbitant -- or reasonable -- a price tag he will carry. Some observers suggest fair value for Moss is two first-round picks and a starting player. If the Vikings are determined to deal him, a first-round draft pick and a defensive starter from, say, Brian Billick's Baltimore Ravens could get a deal done.
In Baltimore, Moss would have a coach he presumably likes and a locker room fixture in Ray Lewis to shield him and keep him in line. Whether Moss would want to play with a quarterback like Kyle Boller is a question for later. For now, the talk is just a whisper.
Kevin Seifert is at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
2 #1s and a player, would you make that deal?