Cris Carter on Patriots: 'They have an issue'

ESPN analyst Cris Carter believes the New England Patriots made a mistake trading Randy Moss to the Minnesota Vikings.

Carter, an eight-time Pro Bowl receiver who played four seasons with Moss, asserted the Patriots' offense as we've come to know it will suffer.

"They have an issue," Carter said on a conference call. "Wes Welker is a slot receiver. He can't play to an elite level outside the numbers. He can only play to an elite level inside the numbers and the hashes because that's the style of player he is.

"They're going to go back to a lot of the ways that they won three Super Bowls. The way they won their championships were grind-it-out on offense.”

The Patriots have two weeks to find another receiver through a trade or free agency. Or they could just stick with who they have. Second-year pro Brandon Tate looks like the best deep threat on the roster, but he hasn't caught a touchdown pass in the NFL.

"Tom Brady is a true pro," Carter said. "Tom is going to be one of the only Patriots that was drafted there, developed there, groomed there and is going to retire there. Tom is going to give you the corporate line: 'We’re going to be OK.'

"But there's no way you take Randy Moss away from any quarterback in this league and that quarterback gets better. It's not possible."