20 Years Ago the Cowboys Passed on Randy Moss
Let's be fair here. Randy Moss was passed on 19 times other than when the Cowboys did it back in the 1998 draft. Now that Moss has made it to the Hall of Fame, he has become the story of that draft however. That will change when Peyton Manning gets elected on his first chance.
The Peyton Manning/Ryan Leaf story line was the big topic from that draft until recently. Heck, Charles Woodson went with the number 4 overall pick. But a lot of teams had question marks about Randy Moss and some teams had him completely off their draft board.
There was at least a discussion about Randy Moss when it was the Cowboys pick at the number 9 spot. All the signs before the draft were that the Cowboys were going to draft Moss. They even showed Moss' film to Darren Woodson, the teams 6 year veteran safety, as they liked to get his input on players. But they would usually turn to him for advice on defensive players.
As the discussions started to really heat up while Dallas was preparing for the draft, the conversation started to turn against Moss. One man was very pro-Randy Moss. That was long time scout Jim Garrett, father of current Cowboys coach Jason Garrett. A lot of the talk was about the issues Moss had off the field when Garrett stood up and said:
"Men, this is not the Boy Scouts we're dealing with. This is pro football. Draft him."
Well, we all know who ultimately makes the drafting decision in the Cowboys organization and Jerry Jones went the other direction.
Despite having Moss visit the team and hanging with then-Cowboy Deion Sanders, Moss was not going to be drafted by Dallas. No one really remembers if he was even on the team's draft board, but when they were on the clock at number 8, the decision was clear. It was between two players going into the draft and when the St. Louis Rams took Grant Wistrom with the number 6 overall pick, the decision was made. The Cowboys drafted Greg Ellis.
Just how did Moss do in his career against the Cowboys? Well, let's just say the Cowboys got to think long and hard every time Moss was on the other side of the field.
In seven regular-season games against the Cowboys, Moss caught 35 passes for 662 yards and 10 touchdowns. His 18.9 yards per catch was the most he averaged against an opponent. His 10 touchdowns were the third most he recorded against a team in his career. He had more against only the Buffalo Bills (12) and Green Bay Packers (14).