The Kansas City Chiefs will likely ask a lot of their 10-man draft class in 2022. Six of these promising youngsters are in the conversation for starting roles and first-rounders Trent McDuffie and George Karlaftis are near-guarantees to earn them.
Of course, this was always the offseason plan for general manager Brett Veach. By flipping Tyreek Hill, the Chiefs were able to reconstruct their roster’s foundation through the draft. Patrick Mahomes is still the centerpiece but the supplementary forces have changed.
One key cog should be Moore, whose skill set has been compared to Hill’s in the past. Will the Western Michigan product help make this a smoother transition into the Chiefs’ new era?
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Moore Projected as Top Rookie WR
NFL analyst Chris Trapasso of CBS Sports ranked the top five rookie wide receivers in terms of “expected production” on June 24 and he put Moore number one. He explained:
I raved about Moore during the pre-draft process — he finished with a mid first-round grade for me — and, of course, since he was drafted to play with Patrick Mahomes in a Tyreek Hill-less Chiefs offense, the raving about Moore continued. Sure, there’s Travis Kelce. He’s option No. 1. But who becomes option No. 2 for Mahomes is completely up for grabs right now. JuJu Smith-Schuster and Marquez Valdes-Scantling have been productive in the NFL already and Mecole Hardman has an established rapport with Mahomes.
But Moore’s skill set is too dazzling for him not to take off in Kansas City’s creatively potent attack. He dusts press coverage at the line, runs violently sharp routes, tracks it like a power forward on the outside, and is a smaller version of Deebo Samuel when it comes to bouncing off tacklers. Moore will be an instant star.
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Deebo Samuel, Not Tyreek Hill
The Hill comparison was an easy one once Kansas City drafted Moore, but Samuel is a fresher take on the rookie playmaker. It also might be more accurate.
No athlete mirrors Samuel completely, the San Francisco 49ers superstar is a unicorn. At 5-foot-10, 195 pounds, Moore certainly isn’t a clone but he does have a similar ability to run after the catch and make defenders miss.
Bleacher Report’s scouting department once described him as a polished route runner that “snatches throws and rarely loses speed to create after the catch.” They also noted that he “flashes the quickness and play strength to beat press coverage” and “keep corners off-balanced.”
Given his inside-out versatility, Moore could channel his inner Samuel and play the Swiss army knife role in this Chiefs offense. When you consider the coaching staff — which is chock full of some of the NFL’s most creative play-calling minds in Andy Reid, Eric Bieniemy and Matt Nagy — it definitely helps support Moore’s number one potential for this WR class.
KC should manufacture plenty of touches for the dynamic rookie in year one and that could lead to a consistency in his production. Having said that, Moore will have to get healthy and remain that way. He spent most of the spring recovering from a hamstring issue but is expected to be ready to go when training camp begins for first-year players on July 22.
Playing “catch-up” is never easy on rookies.