Morning sports update: Dante Scarnecchia was ‘stunned’ Randy Moss thanked him in his Hall of Fame induction speech

"It was really kind of him to say those things."

Hall of Fame Randy Moss
Former NFL wide receiver Randy Moss poses with a bust of himself during inductions at the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Saturday in Canton, Ohio. –Ron Schwane / AP Photo

In his return from the disabled list, Chris Sale struck out 12 in five shutout innings as the Red Sox completed a sweep of the Orioles with a 4-1 victory on Sunday. Steve Pearce homered for Boston, who moved 50 games over .500.

Dante Scarnecchia ‘stunned’ Randy Moss thanked him in his Hall of Fame induction speech

Shortly after the Patriots traded Randy Moss to the Vikings in 2010, the wide receiver received a letter from New England’s longtime offensive line coach, Dante Scarnecchia. Moss never forgot the gesture, and took a moment during his recent Hall of Fame induction speech to thank Scarnecchia for keeping his career alive.

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“There is a coach by the name of Dante Scarnecchia,” Moss said. “Dante, I want to thank you. One of the worst times in my career, I received a letter from you, telling me what you had learned from me and what an inspiration I was to you, and Coach, that uplifted me so much. You have no idea, because I was down and out. I wanted to leave the game. Scar, you talked me back into the game.”

Moss’s second tenure in Minnesota lasted just four games before the team waived him. He then moved to the Tennessee Titans, retired, un-retired, and reached a Super Bowl with the San Francisco 49ers. All told, Moss finished his career with five All-Pro selections and the second-most touchdown receptions (156) in NFL history.

Scarnecchia, 70, was surprised his letter left such a lasting impression on the all-time great.

“It was really kind of him to say those things,” he told the Boston Herald‘s Karen Guregian. “I’m stunned he would remember [the letter]. It was after he left. I really liked him. He was always very, very respectful to me. Most of the time, he called me ‘Coach.’”

Moss wasn’t the only player to do so.

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“Like Junior [Seau],”Scarnecchia said. “Junior because he probably didn’t know my first name.”

Scarnecchia is entering his 32nd year on the Patriots sidelines. He had a brief retirement of his own, but returned in 2016 to lead Tom Brady’s shield once more.

What Paul Pierce had to say about Kyrie Irving’s uncertain contract status: The former Celtics star believes Boston can win a championship this season, if they sacrifice individual statistics for the team. He doesn’t think Irving’s contract status will affect his ability to lead the locker room.

“He knows — if they win again he’ll get whatever contract he wants,” Pierce said. “He’s an extraordinary talent and he knows that winning trumps everything. If you win, everybody wins.” (Boston.com)

Here are the reported incentives in Tom Brady’s reworked contract: The Patriots quarterback can earn up to $5 million in performance-based incentives this season, if he finishes as a top-five player in five statistical categories. Brady would have hit them all in the 2017 season. (Boston.com)

What Robert Williams had to say about his summer-league injury: The Celtics rookie, who suffered a left knee contusion during the team’s first summer league game in July, expects to be 100 percent before training camp begins in September. (Boston.com)

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