The move was a shocker because kickers are almost never drafted that high. Before Moody came along, the only other kicker over the past 15 years to be taken with a top 100 pick was Roberto Aguayo, who was taken 59th overall by the Buccaneers in 2016. He after just one season in Tampa Bay.
One of the 49ers' biggest needs going into the draft was at kicker, so it wasn't a surprise to see them take one, it was just a surprise to see them take one this high. The 49ers had a need at the position because they decided to let Robbie Gould walk in free agency after he had spent the past six seasons with the team (2017-22).
After it became clear that Gould wouldn't be returning, the 49ers made a trade for Zane Gonzalez in March, but it's unlikely that he'll ever play a single down with the team now that Moody is in the fold.
One reason the 49ers likely decided to take Moody so high is because they don't have any picks in the fourth round. If they had passed on Moody in the third round, there's a good chance he wouldn't have been available when they were on the clock again in the fifth round with the 155th overall pick.
The 49ers definitely are taking a risk by replacing Gould with a rookie. Gould is the eighth-most accurate kicker in NFL history and also holds the record for most postseason field goals without a miss (29 of 29).
Although Moody had a strong final year at Michigan, he hit just 45.5% of his field goals from beyond 50 yards in his college career, including 42.9% (3 of 7) last season. On the other hand, Moody was nearly perfect from inside of 50, hitting 92.9% of his kicks last season (26 of 28).
Moody also drilled a 59-yarder in Michigan's 51-45 loss to TCU in the College Football Playoff semifinal, so he definitely has the leg for longer kicks.
Moody now joins a very short list of kickers who have been taken in the third round or earlier this century. Since 2000, there have only been five kickers who have been taken before the end of Day 2, including Moody.
2000: Sebastian Janikowski (First round: 17th overall to Raiders)
2004: Nate Kaeding (Third round: 65th overall to Chargers)
2005: Mike Nugent (Second round: 47th overall to Jets)
2016: Roberto Aguayo (Second round: 59th overall to Buccaneers)
This is actually the second time in franchise history that the 49ers have used a third-round pick on a kicker and San Francisco will definitely be hoping that things go a lot better this time round. Back in 1994, the 49ers selected Doug Brien with the 85th overall pick, but he didn't even last two seasons with the team.
Moody was one of three picks that the 49ers made during the third round along with Ji'Ayir Brown (87th overall) and Cameron Latu (101st overall). The 49ers didn't have any first- or second-round picks, so they didn't get to make their first pick of the draft until late Friday.