May 23, 2007
I gotta say, there’s nothing like seeing Randy Moss quit on the field live and in person. You can only see so much on TV. Back in 2000, I was on the field level for the NFC title game. The Giants jumped out to an early and expansive lead. Bored, I focused my attention to Moss. I watched him on every play and I can tell you for a fact that Moss quit well before halftime of that game. I fully expect Moss to behave this year and actually try on the field now that he’s in New England and with Bill Belichick and Tom Brady. It certainly doesn’t reflect well on Moss, but it’s the reality, and I’ve taken it into consideration when ranking Moss (although I think I’m ranking him lower than pretty much everyone else out there this year).
With Willis McGahee, I feel almost the same way. This is a guy who skipped a lot of voluntary work with the Bills, bashed the city, and displayed attitude problems and voiced contract demands. He was the only team veteran to skip the May minicamps last year, and attending was crucial because the team has a whole new coaching staff and new offensive system. That didn’t matter to McGahee, he still blew them off. That’s nothing compared to what I have observed from McGahee and what I have gathered from people who broke him down on film and the coach’s tape the last two years. It takes a lot for me to question a player’s effort, but I questioned McGahee’s in 2005. That’s as bad as it gets for a professional athlete. Last year, I heard from insiders that McGahee didn’t know the whole playbook and/or didn’t know it well enough to perform at an optimal level on the field. That’s appalling.
The minute he join the Ravens, however, I fully expected those shenanigans to stop. The way I figured, there’s no way he’d pull any stunts with fellow Miami alum Ray Lewis and Ed Reed on the roster, and so far that’s proven to be true. He’s attending all the team’s voluntary minicamps, talking up the fact that he’s motivated and ready to do whatever it takes to help his team.
I know McGahee wasn’t exactly thrilled being a Buffalo Bill and wanted out. He’s now out, he’s in a good situation, and he’s as happy as can be. He’ll likely play well, but I can’t say I’m happy for him. I still can’t get past the fact that McGahee had no loyalty to a team that went out on a huge limb by using a #1 pick on him several years ago when it was still unknown if he would ever return to form coming off his devastating knee injury. The Bills did this despite the fact that they already had a legit lead back in Travis Henry. Their decision really set them back, too, because Henry’s still in the league and playing at a high level. The Bills could have simply used that #1 pick on another player, rolled with Henry as their starter, even as of today, and they never would have had to deal with McGahee’s attitude problems.
In short, McGahee screwed the Buffalo Bills. I’ll still use a #2 pick on him if he’s the best option for my fantasy team because I want to win first and foremost. But if McGahee gets hurt this year, I’ll be chalking that up to that little thing known as Karma.