Randy Moss, 40-year-old professional soccer player? Well, yes, we fell for it too

Randy Gene Moss is one of the greatest wide receivers ever to play professional football. And we thought when we read a press release from the United Soccer League’s Charlotte Independence that Moss was signing a contract with them, that Moss was ready to take on a new sport shortly after he turned 40.

It turns out, he’s up to his old tricks. It was an April Fools’ Day gag. (On March 31, mind you, although we were wondering … )

Yes, a few things felt fishy about the whole deal, including the fact that Moss was signing with a pro soccer league (even one a level below MLS) just one day prior to their season opener against the Charleston Battery. But we admit that we took the bait, and even were secretly rooting for the USL and U.S. Soccer to sign off on Moss being able to wear his famous No. 84 jersey four years after retiring from the NFL.

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Randy Moss reportedly signed a pro soccer contract, but it was just an elaborate April Fools’ Day joke. (AP)
Randy Moss reportedly signed a pro soccer contract, but it was just an elaborate April Fools’ Day joke. (AP)

How should we have really known? Well, technically, the press release included a hint that was hidden in the text, spelling A-P-R-I-L F-O-O-L-S with the first letter of each sentence in the press release. USA Today was the first to get to the bottom of the story.

Yep, we got Mossed, people. Maybe we just badly wanted it to be true. After all, we are talking about one of the finest athletes in the NFL over the past few generations, and he has taken an interest in soccer in the past.

We even wrote in the original post: “We assume this is not an April Fools’ Day joke. If it is, we absolutely love it. This would be peak Moss if so. The dude always keeps us guessing.”

Ain’t that the truth?

We’ve heard of far more ridiculous stunts by other fledgling professional leagues — hey, Tim Tebow is playing minor-league baseball just down the road from Charlotte! — and assumed it was an effort to sell a few tickets while allowing Moss his whim. Plus, his son, Thad, will play football for North Carolina State in the fall, so we made the geographic connection. This is all so sad because we also checked the Independence schedule and halfheartedly considered a fun road trip to see him in goal.

This is the worst April Fools’ Day — or March 31 — prank we’ve ever fallen victim to.

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Eric Edholm is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at edholm@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!

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