Randy Moss' toughness often overlooked

February, 1, 2010
2/01/10
3:50
PM ET
Perhaps no player in the NFL creates more of a firestorm than Patriots wide receiver Randy Moss.

When Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis calls him a “slouch” in an NFL Network interview, the blogosphere starts buzzing. When Panthers defensive backs Chris Gamble and Chris Harris question his effort in a December game, it becomes a national story.

Yet would opinions change if it was discovered that Moss played through a separated shoulder at times this season?

It was learned today that Moss, according to a league source, was diagnosed with a separated shoulder after the season, and that’s why he didn’t play in the Pro Bowl.

Rest can often help a separated shoulder heal, so this isn’t a big deal. But it does add context to the severity of at least one injury Moss was battling through in 2009.

Moss didn’t miss a game in 2009, played in approximately 85 percent of the offensive snaps, and finished with 83 receptions for 1,264 yards and 13 touchdowns.

He is one of the NFL’s most scrutinized players, and isn’t often praised for his toughness.

In this case, maybe he should be.

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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