Dan writes about the fan reaction to the Moss trade and his column. He concludes that the fans are cynical, win-at-all-costs, hypocrites.
Dan suggests that New England sports fans would welcome any athlete, regardless of his past history; It's all about the laundry.
He lists other controversial athletes fans might embrace. In Dan's typical modus operandi, he starts with the most outrageous suggestion, Pacman Jones. Moss has been arrested twice in twelve years, Jones has been investigated and/or arrested by police ten times in the last year or so. Included in those investigations, the use of his car by a convicted drug dealer, and his participation in a brutal battery of a stripper and the attempted murder of a bouncer. I don't think any fan base would so irrational as to embrace Jones, except for Oakland, of course.
The list continues with other athletes with issues, either in general or with Boston. I think in a lot of ways their comparisons with the Moss situation fail. Bonds would never work in Boston. He is attacking a sacred record while in the midst of convincing accusations of PED use. Others would never be embraced because of their role as the bad guys in Boston rivalries. (Ulf Samuelsson and Bill Laimbeer? Give fans some credit.) And others never rose to the same heights of antipathy, such as Alex Rodriguez.
Rooting for a sports team is largely irrational. Dan is correct in that regard. But I don't think his list of athletes is very fair to fans or captures the same questions that surround the Moss acquisition. He is no Pacman Jones or Barry Bonds and there is no long history of tormenting the Patriots.
What may be the best comparison is Dennis Johnson, which was brought up by Glenn Ordway this weekend. Dan addresses it and ultimately dismisses it. But it does seem to be the best comparison out there.