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Randy Moss A Viking Again

The New England Patriots shocked the NFL this morning and traded wide receiver Randy Moss to the Minnesota Vikings for a third round draft pick. 

Moss immediately gives Favre a playmaking receiver to throw to. Favre has been among the worst quarterbacks in the NFL this year but this move will certainly help bolster his production. Favre now has Moss, Harvin and Peterson as excellent weapons and the Vikings will eventually add Sidney Rice back to the fold. Their offense, assuming Favre progresses, will be one of the most - if not the most - dangerous in the NFL. 

Moss will have a 17 game schedule this year as the Vikings already had their bye week. He will face the Jets again this Monday night before the Vikings host the Dallas Cowboys in Week 6. It's unfortunate for Dallas fans that the Vikings acquired Moss in advance of the game against the Cowboys but such is life. 

From a Patriots perspective, this trade is jarring. Bill Belichick is the master of value and manipulating the draft. New England relied heavily on multiple TE sets against the Dolphins in their Monday Night thrashing. Granted, Moss does draw double teams enabling Wes Welker, Aaron Hernandez et al to get open, but Moss was targeted only once on Monday night - on a fake spike. The Patriots have morphed their offense back more to what it used to look like when they won their three Super Bowl titles - methodically working down the field with multiple tight end sets, a consistent run game and play action. This will put an enormous amount of pressure on the Patriots lesser known players such as Brandon Tate

With the trade, the Patriots now are once again stocked with draft picks. They have the Raiders first round pick, the Panthers second round pick and now the Vikings third rounder - in addition to their own. The timing is odd but Belichick decided that the value was there to pull the trigger sending a 33 year old Moss back to the Vikings.

Trading Moss might seem jarring on the surface especially with the timing of it but this is the Patriots M.O. They cut Lawyer Malloy, traded Richard Seymour and Mike Vrabel, and let Ty Law and Adam Vinatieri go in free agency. Tom Brady is the only safe player on the Patriots roster - always has been and always will be.

It will be interesting to see how the Patriots offense looks for the duration of this season and what it morphs into. For the Vikings, it will be interesting to see how explosive of an offense they can have indoors with Favre, Moss, Peterson, Harvin and eventually Rice. This could spell trouble for the NFC.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.