Rondale Moore was one of the most explosive and elusive skill position players on film during the 2018 collegiate season, but his star dimmed a bit during the past several months of the pre-draft season. But, the Cardinals weren't deterred, as they took him with the 49th pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
After an injury-plagued 2019 season and opting out of most of the 2020 season plus concerns about his size took the forefront, Moore started falling behind in mock drafts. That was until his pro day. Moore clocked a 4.29 40-yard dash with a ridiculous 42.5-inch vertical jump, reminding everyone just how explosive he could be at the NFL level.
Moore came to Purdue after a legendary career in Kentucky high school football. He led Trinity High School to consecutive Class 6A state titles as a junior and senior, including a perfect 15-0 season in the final year of his preps career. He set the school record for receptions (104), receiving yards (1,461) and touchdowns (16), and in the process earned the Gatorade Kentucky Player of the Year honor in 2017. Moore received 20 offers as a four-star recruit (per 247Sports), including one from Alabama, before deciding to play for the Boilermakers.
We're breaking down everything you need to know about Moore from a Fantasy manager perspective, including best fits, dynasty outlook, measurables, scouting report, key stats and an NFL comparison.
2021 Fantasy impact
The Cardinals really need help at wide receiver, and while they added A.J. Green earlier in the offseason, Moore is more likely to be the most important pickup of the offseason for them. And he could be the No. 2 pass catcher in the offense fairly early on. The problem with that is, Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury likes to spread the ball around and might finally have enough viable wide receivers to play a bit closer to his preferences.
But Moore could be an exceptional fit for this team. Moore would have likely gone earlier if not for injury concerns, and while he's undersized at 5-foot-9, make sure you don't call him small. He's stout and strong -- he put up 24 reps on the bench press -- and was impossible to tackle in college, where 71% of his yards at Purdue came after the catch. Kingsbury looks to throw short and get his receivers in position to make plays with the ball in their hands. That's Moore's best trait.
Moore will be a fascinating sleeper in the later rounds of Fantasy drafts as a rookie. He could emerge as the No. 2 wide receiver for the Cardinals, which could make him a viable starting Fantasy option, especially in PPR. Or, he could get lost in the shuffle and struggle to stand out. Either way, he'll be worth looking for in the last few rounds on Draft Day.
For 2021, Moore is actually ranked third among the rookie wide receivers -- though he is quite a bit behind Ja'Marr Chase and DeVonta Smith, and a lot closer to Jaylen Waddle than the prior two. In the long run, he may not have as much upside as Smith or Waddle, let alone Chase, because all three of those guys could step in as the No. 1 option for their teams by the start of the 2022 season. With DeAndre Hopkins around, that probably isn't going to happen in Arizona. Still, he should be a first-round rookie-only pick and potentially a top-40 Dynasty WR in startup drafts.
- The ability to cut on a dime, stopping and restarting his momentum better than any WR in this class
- Vertical leaping ability (42.5-inch vertical, 99th percentile among all WRs) that shows up on film.
- Elite straight-line speed that should immediately make him a threat on slot verts.
- Explosive with the ball in his hand with elite elusiveness and the ability to force missed tackles in space.
- Better route runner than advertised (just because he wasn't asked to run an expansive route tree doesn't mean he's not able to).
- Better ball skills in the air and in contested-catch situations than his size would suggest.
- Elite lateral agility (6.68 3-cone puts him in 92nd percentile).
- Elite quickness (1.50 10-yard split puts him in 94th percentile).
- Plus-level contact balance and low center of gravity make him difficult to tackle in the open field.
- Size -- Moore checked in at just 5-7 (1st percentile) and 180 pounds (9th percentile) which might suggest he'll be limited to a slot-only role at the next level.
- Injuries are a concern; Moore has only played in seven games over the last two seasons.
- Moore' dominant 2018 season did involve a heavy dosage of quick-hitting passes, screens and manufactured touches.
|2020 v top 25
|2018 v top 25
Advanced stats to know
- Second-highest graded receiver in the slot (career) among all WRs in the 2021 class, per Pro Football Focus.
- 2.5 yards per route run vs. press coverage -- fourth-best in the class, per PFF.
- 47 of 114 receptions in 2018 came on screen passes.
You've possibly seen the comparisons to former NFL and Carolina Panthers great Steve Smith, and while Moore has some Smith to his game, he's not nearly as developed as a route runner on the outside and overall just yet. He remains a projection in many ways, but at the same time, it's not fair to call him a gadget player like Tavon Austin was entering the NFL. My NFL comparison for Moore would be a souped-up Jakeem Grant.