Say what you will about Jerry Rice’s domination catching passes from Joe Montana and Steve Young, but I’ve never seen a wide receiver as intimidating as Randy Moss. The 2018 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee ranks fourth on the NFL’s all-time receiving yardage list (15,292) and is second behind Rice with 156 touchdown catches. “The Freak” played on two of the five highest-scoring offenses in NFL history — the 1998 Vikings and 2007 Patriots — and holds league records with 23 touchdown grabs in a season, most seasons with at least 17 receiving touchdowns (3), and receiving yards in the Pro Bowl (212), among many others.
Did you think Randy Moss’ son wasn’t going to carry on those historic genes?
Is Thaddeus Moss Related to Randy Moss?
LSU Tigers tight end Thaddeus Moss wasn’t a household name in college football until 2019. When passing game coordinator Joe Brady arrived and opened his playbook, the Tigers, spearheaded by Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow, became the nation’s No. 1 offense in both scoring (48.9 PPG) and total yards (564.2).
Their 6-foot-3, 250-pound tight end was perfectly suited to blossom in the system, too.
As a junior, Moss broke LSU records for receptions (42) and receiving yards (534) by a tight end. Great hands paired with above-average blocking ability created a perfect weapon for the Tigers’ offense. Moss is carving his own path, but he definitely learned some of dad’s mind games to ruffle feathers, especially after beating Oklahoma in the Peach Bowl semifinal game.
The year before, Moss was forced to redshirt after a foot fracture in training camp began a year-long recovery. Surgery was required, but his foot injury didn’t heal properly despite relentless rehabilitation. Moss underwent a second surgery near the end of the season.
“Last year was one of the hardest years of my life physically, emotionally and mentally,” Moss said back in September. “There was a lot up in the air. I didn’t know how I was going to come back from surgery, but I worked really hard this off-season, and I’m looking forward to this season.”
But after seeing incredible catches like this one, you can be sure Moss’ foot is back to 100 percent.
Thaddeus Moss Catch vs. Alabama
Moss starred at Mallard Creek High School in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he helped the team win a third-straight state championship as a senior. He caught 13 touchdowns that year, was rated as ESPN’s No. 4 tight end of the 2016 recruiting class, and played his freshman season with the NC State Wolfpack. Moss transferred to LSU and sat out the 2017 season due to NCAA transfer rules.
His breakout junior season has caught the eye of NFL scouts, too.
“Everybody in this room, everybody on this football team, has dreams of playing at the next level,” Moss recently told WAFB’s Jacques Doucet about a potential leap to the NFL. “Playing at LSU and being at the position we are, you know, I wouldn’t care for playing another year if we’re going to be back here doing the same thing we did this year.”
Moss’ focus wasn’t on pro football just yet, as his LSU football team prepared to face the Clemson Tigers in the CFP title game on Monday, January 13. But make no mistake: the son of an NFL Hall of Famer has all the tools and resources to be a professional football player just like dear old dad when that time inevitably comes.
UPDATE (January 17, 2020): After a CFP run where Moss caught nine passes for 135 yards and three touchdowns in wins over Oklahoma and Clemson, the tight end decided to forego his senior season and declare for the 2020 NFL Draft.
Thaddeus Moss Enters 2020 NFL Draft
This article was originally published January 7, 2020.