Heading into the 2021 season, there are plenty of players for the Las Vegas Raiders to be excited about. There’s rookie first-round pick Alex Leatherwood, big-ticket free agent Yannick Ngakoue or even Pro Bowl tight end Darren Waller. While all of those guys will be important for the team this season, there could be a surprise player who becomes a star.
Tight end Foster Moreau was part of the solid 2019 NFL Draft class that the Raiders put together. Despite Waller stealing the spotlight at tight end, Moreau had a solid rookie season with five touchdowns before going down with an ACL injury. In Year 2, his role was lessened due to the addition of Jason Witten.
With Witten retired, Moreau is now the clear No. 2 tight end for Las Vegas. Waller is still the star of the group but the Raiders are very excited about the former LSU Tiger. In fact, he’s the player the team is most excited about, according to NFL Network’s Peter Schrager.
“Foster Moreau is beloved in that building and took it to another level last year. … They’ve already got Darren Waller and Edwards and Ruggs on the outside. ‘The fourth option on the Raiders is your breakout player?’ I’m not lying here, guys. When I tell you I talk to folks in the Raiders organization and the player that they’re most excited about is Foster Moreau,” Schrager said.
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Jon Gruden Is a Big Fan of Moreau
While the NFL is starting to favor more glamorous positions like wide receiver, Jon Gruden likes to keep things old school when he can. He loves tight ends and fullbacks. Luckily for him, he could have one of the best tight end duos in the NFL. Waller is one of the three best tight ends in the league but Gruden believes that Moreau is exactly the kind of player he wants in his offense.
“I’m not going to be Foster’s agent, but I wish I was. I love him. He’s perfect for how we want to play here,” Gruden said recently. “He can block inline, he can pass protect. He’s a football junkie. He’s one of the greatest kids I’ve ever coached.”
Moreau clearly has the head coach on his side which bodes well for him. His second year in the league was a bit disappointing but there shouldn’t be anything stopping him from putting together a sneaky good season.
Moreau Understands His Role
The Raiders are clearly excited about what Moreau brings to the table, but he’s still going to be the sixth or seventh option on the offense. There will be games where he doesn’t have much of a role in the passing game at all. He understands that he has to let plays come to him.
“You have to take responsibility for yourself to be able to handle a little bit more of a snap share but also do your job and try and hone in on the details,” Moreau said, via Raiders.com. You can’t have ‘I need to make a play here.’ You can’t press for plays; you have to let them come.”
The Raiders could have a loaded offense in 2021. The fact that Moreau isn’t likely to be a focal point on the offense is pretty telling.