Sure, there were rumors that Bill Belichick was intrigued, and it was clear that Moss had worn out his welcome in Oakland. But the idea of Moss in Foxborough? When it became reality, it shocked a lot of people.
The truth, according to those who know, is that it wasn’t exactly a “sudden” thing. And the National Football Post’s Andrew Brandt — the Packers’ lead negotiator back then — offered confirmation in his column the other day.
The Raiders bold experiment with Moss – they had traded Napoleon Harris
and the 7th pick in the 2005 Draft for him – ended after two seasons
when Moss could be had for a mid-round pick. Ted Thompson surprisingly
had some interest, having been impressed with the way Moss handled
himself at a charity event that he happened to be at in Texas. And
Brett, of course, was extremely jazzed about the idea.
That Brett would be Favre, of course, and Brandt goes on to write that Moss’ insistence on a one-year deal is what kept the then-Packers quarterback from getting what he wanted, and delivered Patriots quarterback Tom Brady the transcendent talent. According to Brandt, both quarterbacks furiously recruited Moss.
And it didn’t end there. The next offseason, with Moss a free agent, Brandt writes that the Packers made another run at him and he notes that Favre “retired” the day after Green Bay failed to reel in the receiver. The rest, of course, is history. Pretty amazing how close Moss was to being a Packer, and how different the landscape of the league might look if that came to pass.