Story: Sean A. Malcolm
Photography: Michael Blackwell
RANDY MOSS IS ONE OF THE MOST DEFIANT jocks to walk a playing field since John McEnroe served profanities to line judges in the 80s. But, curiously, the Raiders’ new wideout is a simple, well-behaved man in the off-season. Don’t expect the Virginia native to be in Rolex’s VIP room popping bubbly with a curvaceous groupie on his lap. He’d much rather plot bass fishing strategies on his couch in his painfully generic gated community in Boca Raton, Florida. And you definitely won’t see him putting 26-inch spinners on his high-end street toys. Even though his driveway is filled with a Lamborghini Gallardo, customized purple Chevy Avalanche and a BMW 745Li, as he explains, “kitting it out” doesn’t pique his interest, except for his Avalanche. Simply put, Randy Moss keeps it simple.
RIDES: So what do the old folks who live in your gated community say when they see you pull up in one of your cars?
RANDY MOSS: At first they were wondering, “Who in the hell is that, driving that car in this community?!” Now they know who I am, and they know my vehicles, so that’s how it is. It’s more of a respect thing now. I pay my rent just like they do. Back in the day, it was a big thing to drive up in my Lamborghini or my BMW or something like that, but now they know me in my community.
Speaking of your BMW 745Li, word is it’s bulletproof. Did you get a few threatening phone calls from Commissioner Tagliabue [laughs]?
My whole car is bulletproof except for the wheels.
Then a smart shooter would go for the tires first.
Back in ’98, I just got it bulletproofed, just for the fact that BMW is more of a luxury car. That’s more my style. There’s no telling where I might end up at.You might see me in the hood, you might see me in the ghetto, you might see me out in the suburbs somewhere.You never know where you’re going to see me at.That’s what I wanted to get that car for. Just on certain days I might go here, I might go there. I just wanted to have that security to know that I can be in my car and be safe.
You didn’t go through such drastic measures with the Lamborghini Gallardo, though.
I got that Lamborghini and I don’t even like it. I wanted it at first, but now I don’t even want it. It’s just too small. I like to fit into a luxury [car] that has more legroom – one where you can just recline a little bit and enjoy your vehicle. You really can’t do that with Lamborghinis. I just want to have some luxury, and something I can fit in.
You can always pawn it.
I’m not worried about that – if I could sell it, it’s fine with me. I’m going to enjoy it while I have it. If I sell it I might be able to get some of my money back. It’s not big to me. I have money. I’ve sold a few of my vehicles for low prices just to make people happy, to let them appreciate my vehicles just like I do.
What fine luxurious vehicle do you appreciate right now?
I want that Maybach.
A celebrity with a Maybach is like a teenager hipster with a Mini. It’s so predictable. No offense…
I told myself two years ago, whenever I won the Super Bowl I was going to buy myself the Maybach. Now that it’s been two years and I haven’t even set foot on the Super Bowl field, I think I can sell my Lamborghini and use some of that money to put toward my Maybach.That’s something I can appreciate, because that’s more my style.
Since you’re pretty much a loner, who in your camp will drive the Maybach?
I’ll drive it myself.
You know Maybachs are meant to be ridden in, right?
The guys I have around me, I don’t even know if they have insurance. And if they have insurance, I don’t know if it’s enough to cover my damn Maybach. So I think I’d rather just drive it myself, and just feel comfortable with me.
So what customizations would you put in the Maybach?
Maybe a stereo system, and tint my windows.That’s it.
That’s it? You know, for a sport that has so many flashy, show-me-the-money athletes, you’re rather by-the-book.
The fans, in so many ways, help pay our salary, and we work hard for our money. We train hard for our money. So if another person comes up rolling in something big and something phat then I have no problem with it. I just would like the younger guys to save their money and not try to do what the others guys do. I think I did a pretty good job at saving my money at the beginning of my career. Now I’m able to spend a lit- tle more. And having a Maybach is more of a statement, that I have money and can get any car in the world that I want.
So what statement were you making when you customized your Avalanche purple?
I just had to custom something out. That was my first ever vehicle that I custom made myself. I put a little bit of heart into it, to have it made. Now, I’m getting tired of that too.
You get tired of whips too easily.
It’s too flashy and it draws a lot of attention. Of course, I’m not the type that draws a lot of attention.
That’s like saying Larry Flint doesn’t like breasts.
I don’t really like a lot of attention, that’s why I’m trying to get away from a lot of the flashiness.
Well, flash aside, which one of your cars defines your style on the field?
I would have to say my Lamborghini. I’m a black man and I’m very fast and I don’t play around. The Lamborghini is something that doesn’t play around. It’s black, it’s very fast and when it hits the road it goes. So I can go with that.
And off the field?
I think the Avalanche defines the child in me, because I customized it. I’m going on 30 years old and you don’t see a lot of customized vehicles out there – maybe a few but not many. In the south you see more customizing, in every other part of the country you don’t see a lot of customized vehicles – all you see are a lot of nice vehicles with nice rims. As you can see I’m a little more laid back. I try not to be big, but I am big, as far as my name and my wealth.
-OCT/NOV 2005 issue of RIDES Magazine