- Mike Reiss, ESPN Staff Writer
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Former Patriots receiver Randy Moss returns to town Sunday as a member of the 49ers, which provides a springboard to look closer at his contributions this season.
The 35-year-old Moss, who is wearing No. 84, has 21 receptions for 326 yards and two touchdowns for the 49ers. His long reception is 55 yards.
Moss had been playing about 30 percent of the snaps prior to last week, according to Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com. With receiver Mario Manningham out last week, Moss' total spiked to about 50 percent, Maiocco said.
When asked what he's seen from Moss this season, Bill Belichick said Wednesday, "Randy is Randy. Good vertical receiver, he can still run through the defense. I don't think there is any doubt about that."
Moss met with Bay Area reporters Wednesday and here were a few of his soundbites (audio link here):
What he learned from Bill Belichick. "I've learned a lot from Bill Belichick. I've said time and time again, before I got to New England, I thought I knew a lot about football. But I think he taught me a lot, from A to Z, and I still carry it to this day. The compliments are good, and I respect Coach Belichick and that organization still to this day. Hopefully we have a good game coming out Sunday night. I look forward to the game, and I hope the fans do too."
Comparing the 49ers and Patriots. "I don't really want to get into all that, because whatever I say is going to be the wrong thing to say. So basically I'll leave it at [that] I still have love and respect for the New England Patriots and everything that we did as a team up there, but now I'm a 49er and hopefully we go up there Sunday night and give it a good game."
Thoughts on the Patriots' offense. "One thing we know, it's going to be a hard-fought game, coming from the offensive side because of their ability to put points up. Hopefully we can complement our defense; I'm not telling what's going to happen, but we have to play complementary football. I think if we do that and try not to let Tom [Brady] and the offense run the score up on us, I think it will be a good game. We're just coming in, working each and every day, and I look forward to the matchup Sunday night."
How much he can assist teammates in facing a Bill Belichick-coached team. "I think New England, switching offensive coordinators [to Josh McDaniels in 2012], I don't really know ... Everybody knows that Bill Belichick is a so-called 'genius.' He changes it up every week, so there's not really much input I can give for the week; I'd just say 'have your head on a swivel and be ready for anything.' The way they're playing, coming off a Monday night game against the so-called best team in the league in the Houston Texans -- they put 40-something points up and really embarrassed them. I don't think we want to be that team that gets embarrassed on national television. Like I said, hopefully we come prepared and ready to play a good game."