Tag:Randy Moss
Posted on: August 6, 2011 12:44 pm

Syracuse WR Sales, a legitmate prospect, arrested

Last year former Syracuse wide receiver Mike Williams turned in the finest rookie season we've seen in the NFL since Randy Moss exploded onto the scene in 1998. Scouts knew Williams could play. He had been graded as a potential first round pick by some scouts prior to his senior season with the Orange and thus, his rookie statistics (65 catches for 964 yards and 11 touchdowns) were not the huge surprise in the scouting community than you might expect considering Williams fell to the fourth round of the 2010 draft.

He fell to that point because of a myriad of off-field problems.

A former teammate of Williams -- current Syracuse senior receiver Marcus Sales -- can only hope he'll be as fortunate after an arrest July 29 for felony drug possession, among other things.

Syracuse head coach Doug Marrone announced during the media day yesterday that he'd suspended his starting receiver for the arrest, though he stopped short of providing many specifics.
"When there's further information, I will definitely let you know. I've always done that. That's my policy," coach Doug Marrone said at Friday's media day. "We have a legal process that everything has to go through. We also have a judicial process that everything has to go through."
Sales' numbers last season weren't nearly as impressive as the ones that Williams had produced. In fact, prior to the last year's Pinstripe Bowl victory over Kansas State, Sales had only caught 21 passes for 242 yards and a single touchdown. It was Sales breakout performance against the Wildcats that no doubt caught the attention of scouts, however. Sales was virtually unstoppable in the bowl game, catching five passes for 172 yards and three touchdowns in earning easy MVP honors.

News of Sales' arrest and subsequent suspension have the 'Cuse receiver tumbling down NFLDraftScout.com's wide receiver rankings. He's currently our No. 94 rated receiver potentially available for the 2012 draft, despite the fact that he was viewed by some scouts as a potential late-round pick entering the season. NFLDraftScout.com's ranking include underclassmen.

Sales and his older brother, Michael Sales, Jr. were arrested after the car Marcus was driving was pulled over for running a red light. Inside the car, police reported finding an open container of alcohol, as well as several bags of marijuana, a bag of 180 Lortab tablets and several digital scales, according to this very detailed report from Jim O'Hara of The Post-Standard and Syracuse.com. The brothers have been charged with fifth- and seventh- degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, second- degree criminally using drug paraphernalia and unlawful possession of marijuana. Marcus, as the driver, was also charged with running the red light, consuming alcohol in a motor vehicle and having an open container inside a vehicle. 

Sales clearly has bigger concerns at this point than worrying about his potential NFL stock. Should he, however, be able to resume his football career, pro scouts will just as obviously want to investigate the matter further before considering adding him to their roster.
Posted on: August 2, 2011 12:37 pm
Edited on: August 2, 2011 12:49 pm

Moss should be a slam dunk 1st ballot HOF

Randy Moss' retirement from the NFL was met with sighs of relief from defensive backs around the NFL and a collective "How soon does he make the Hall of Fame" question from pro football scribes and bloggers.

For talent evaluators, Moss' retirement is met with a different feeling, at least from this one.

It is met with appreciation.

Randy Moss' combination of size, acceleration, top-end speed and body control made him the dangerous wide receiver the NFL has ever known.

Moss wasn't the best receiver the league has seen. We all know that he was prone to listless, unmotivated play that sent him packing from more than one team. It is why, despite still undeniably possessing a big play ability that every team is looking, that Moss wasn't offered a competitive contract this off-season, leading to his retirement announcement.

We all know he didn't run the sharpest routes or possess the softest hands. He rarely demonstrated the physicality as a downfield blocker that a receiver with his size advantage could have.

The media tosses around the word "freak" to describe athletes with extraordinary athleticism. If there ever was an athlete that deserved the moniker, it is Moss. Put simply, tall skinny guys like the 6-4, 210 pound Moss typically don't have the muscle power in their lower body to generate the explosive acceleration and long speed that Moss so successfully used throughout his football career.

Too often Moss was miscast as strictly a deep ball threat. This is a valuable skill in the NFL, but demands "only" great speed. Moss' athletic brilliance was that he generated great speed so quickly. When he caught a slant, a hitch, a deep out or even a bubble screen, he had the burst to zip past the initial wave of defenders coming his way.

Moss' career numbers are astounding. He caught 954 passes for 14,858 yards and 153 touchdowns. He scored double digit touchdowns nine times over his career. You want big plays? He caught passes that gained his offense 40+ yards an amazing 76 times in his career. DeSean Jackson is often credited with his big play ability. Sure he's young and will hopefully continue his brilliant playmaking for a long, long time, but by comparison he's had 20. Moss' numbers are even more impressive when you consider that his boorish behavior often pushed him to new teams. In every case, he was expected by the fans (if not the coaching staffs) to be an instant savior of a passing attack.

That behavior may, unfortunately, be enough to keep some of the NFL scribes given the privilege of voting for the Hall of Fame to place some type of misguided moral code on their ballots.

Moss was among the truly elite, freakish players of his era. His ability to threaten the defense should be held in much the same regard as what Jim Brown, Walter Payton, Jerry Rice and Terrell Owens did as runners and receivers during their astounding careers.  The Cover-Two defense was created to help stop Moss and other big play artists.

If Moss isn't a first ballot Hall of Fame player, than I haven't seen one.

Posted on: April 18, 2010 12:46 pm

McDaniels' defense of Dez telling?

The weeks preceeding the NFL draft is full of hyperbole and deceit. What NFL coaches, front office executives and scouts say on the record is often less than honest.

Rather than boldface lie to the media members they typically are paid to be honest with, most league members simply choose to not to comment about specific players.

Bill Parcells, Bill Belichick and Scott Pioli are a few of the more famous examples of NFL personnel who subscribe to this theory.

Denver head coach Josh McDaniels, formerly the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach under Belichick in New England, apparently operates under a different philosophy, going out of his way to defend Oklahoma State wide receiver Dez Bryant.

During his pre-draft press conference with Denver media, McDaniels was uncharacteristically candid when asked about Bryant and the apparently erroneous report that he had been taken off Denver's list of possible draft selections. McDaniels said as much, noting that  Bryant "is on our board."“I think you have to be careful with confusing character issues with some people that made some mistakes,” McDaniels said. ”This guy has never been arrested, he’s never had a drinking issue, he’s never done anything that’s put him in that position. He’s made a few mistakes that he wishes he hadn’t made. But I think there’s a difference. We enjoyed our visit with him. He did everything we asked him to do and had a smile on his face. We enjoyed the entire visit, and he did well.”
McDaniels' admission is interesting. If he hadn't said anything about Bryant, many likely would have assumed that the reports that the Oklahoma State star was off their board were true. End of story.

By publicly defending him and claim that Bryant remains on their board, however, McDaniels could be attempting to create interest in the pick or preparing Denver Broncos fans for the possibility that Bryant will be their pick.

On the one hand it might seem odd that Denver would take Bryant considering that they just got rid of a similarly gifted receiver in Brandon Marshall and his laundry list of character concerns.

It is worth noting, however, that Josh McDaniels' success in the NFL have been tied to two offenses blessed with spectacular receiver play -- the Broncos with Marshall and the Patriots with Randy Moss.

As talented a coach as McDaniels may be, entering the 2010 NFL season without a headlining talent at receiver might be more risk than drafting Bryant would be...

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com