Continuing a mini-series looking back on the Patriots' 2007 season:
Today’s question: Which training camp storyline ended up being most off the mark, in that it had little impact on the season?
Top candidates: The battle for the punting job; safety Rodney Harrison's four-game suspension for violating the NFL's banned substances policy; receiver Randy Moss' effort in practice and his hamstring injury; cornerback Asante Samuel staying away from training camp; Reche Caldwell, Jabar Gaffney and Kelley Washington fighting for the final two receiver slots; running back Laurence Maroney's health; how fatherhood would affect Tom Brady's focus.
Top choice: Randy Moss' effort in practice and his hamstring injury.
The reason: Moss' presence created a buzz from the first day of camp. Onlookers seemingly judged his every step, attempting to determine if he was going full speed. Was he loafing? Where did he finish in end-of-practice sprints? Moss was putting on a clinic in an Aug. 1 practice -- his rapport with quarterback Tom Brady seemingly reaching new levels -- when he pulled up while attempting to track down a long pass. It was Moss' last training camp practice and it was natural to wonder if Moss would be ready for the season opener Sept. 9 against the Jets. Some went as far as to wonder if Moss would even make the team. Moss' debut was memorable -- a 9-catch, 183-yard effort against the Jets in which he outran triple coverage for a 51-yard touchdown. He went on to have a remarkable season, totaling 23 touchdown catches to set a new NFL single-season record.
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