Hyper-Athletic AFC Receiver Emerges as Packers’ Trade Target

Elijah Moore, Jets

Getty Elijah Moore of the New York Jets against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 4, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

As the NFL trade deadline approaches, the Green Bay Packers‘ options to upgrade at wide receiver are growing.

Disgruntled talents from around the league are publicly attempting to push their way out of unfavorable situations. The newest addition to that group is second-year wideout Elijah Moore of the New York Jets.

Moore requested a trade on Thursday, October 20, news broken via Twitter by Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.

“Sources: #Jets WR Elijah Moore, frustrated with his role and usage, has asked for a trade,” Rapoport wrote. “The team has no plans at all to trade him. The former second-rounder was targeted once in the win over the #Packers, but the play was negated by a penalty.”

Rapoport’s inclusion that the Jets do not intend on dealing Moore should be taken with a grain of salt. First, it strongly indicates that Rapoport’s source came from within the organization, which would mean it was the Jets themselves circulating the news that Moore wants out of New York.

Secondly, if the Jets were behind the leak, putting that information out there with the caveat that they don’t intend to trade Moore can be read as a leverage play in an attempt to get a return equal to the draft capital they spent to select the young wideout in 2021.


Moore, an Afterthought With Jets, Would Feature More Prominently With Packers

Elijah Moore

GettyWR Elijah Moore of the New York Jets looks on from the sidelines against the Philadelphia Eagles during a preseason game at Lincoln Financial Field on August 12, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

Of course, there is also the possibility that the Jets feared Moore’s trade request would leak regardless and wanted to get ahead of the narrative. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that Moore was back at the team practice facility Friday after taking off the day before.

As for Moore’s role in New York, he has started all six games for the Jets this season, pulling in 16 catches for 203 yards.

As a rookie, Moore caught 43 passes for 538 yards and five touchdowns, per Pro Football Reference. He also rushed the ball five times for 54 yards and one score.

His statistics place Moore fifth on the Jets list of receivers this season, behind even rookie running back Breece Hall. If Moore were to join the Packers’ offense, his numbers would slot him as the team’s fourth-most productive pass catcher with a chance to quickly rise through the ranks.

Green Bay designated veteran Randall Cobb — currently second on the roster in receiving yards and a favorite target of quarterback Aaron Rodgers —  to the IR on Saturday, sidelining him for at least the next four weeks. Christian Watson will also miss his second consecutive game, and the third game of his rookie season, with a lingering hamstring injury.


Packers’ Passing Game in Need of Playmakers

Lazard Minicamp Absence

GettyWR Allen Lazard of the Green Bay Packers reacts as he walks off the field following the team’s win against the Detroit Lions at Lambeau Field on September 20, 2021 in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

The addition of Moore would slot him alongside Allen Lazard and Romeo Doubs, the team’s top two receivers through six games, as well as rejuvenated tight end Robert Tonyan.

Rodgers has been forced to rely heavily on Tonyan, who scored a touchdown two weeks ago against the New York Giants and caught 10 balls for 90 yards to lead Green Bay in both categories last Sunday against the Jets. But for a team that has struck fear into opposing defenses for years, the lack of speed and playmaking ability in the receiver room has been glaring.

Moore is noticeably undersized, standing at five feet, nine inches tall and weighing 184 pounds upon his entry into the NFL last season. But the wideout offers a dynamic element in the slot, with a strong “vertical push” and “plenty of juice to get deep,” per his official scouting report on NFL.com.

During his combine performance, Moore logged a 40-yard-dash time of 4.35 seconds and a vertical leap measuring 36 inches. Per his scouting report, Moore’s NFL comparison at the time was four-time All Pro receiver Antonio Brown.

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