Rookie wide receiver Rondale Moore could be the playmaker the Arizona Cardinals need to take the next step in 2021. With head coach Kliff Kingsbury and quarterback Kyler Murray entering their third season with Arizona, the pressure is mounting on the Cardinals’ offense to breakthrough in 2021. Moore could be the key to making that jump.
Standing at 5’7″, 184 pounds, Moore is easily on the smaller end of receivers in the NFL, but what he lacks in size, he makes up for with his athletic ability. Moore established himself as one of the best athletes in the entire 2021 NFL Draft at his pro day, where he recorded a blazing 4.29 unofficial 40-yard dash to go with a 42.5 vertical jump.
Moore’s playmaking made him an unstoppable force during his freshman season at Purdue. Moore’s versatility was on full display being used as a receiver, rusher, and kick returner, putting up 2,215 all-purpose yards and earning All-American status. Injuries hampered much of Moore’s final two years in West Lafayette, but the promise from his 2018 season was enough for the Cardinals to take him 49th overall.
Moore’s skillset fits nicely with the Arizona Cardinals, who already have DeAndre Hopkins on the outside as well as a talented quarterback in Kyler Murray. Moore will add a much-needed dimension to Arizona’s offense with his explosiveness and could be the compliment to Hopkins the team struggled to find last season.
To reach his full potential, Moore will have to be in the right system. He is a unique player and needs to be treated as such. Moore isn’t meant to be used as a normal slot receiver, and when properly utilized, he can be a complete game-changer. It will be a point of emphasis for the Cardinals to draw up plays that get him in space to take advantage of his big-play ability.
It will be interesting to see how creative Kingsbury will be with Moore’s role. At Purdue, Moore took snaps from the outside, slot, and out of the backfield, and that’s not even including the special teams aspect of his game. This gadget type of playmaker is one that the Cardinals have lacked for the last couple of seasons.
As of right now, the Arizona Cardinals don’t have a clear second option to Hopkins on the offense. A.J. Green is well past his prime, Christian Kirk still hasn’t broken through, and Maxx Williams hasn’t had more than 300 yards in a season. This is where making room in the playbook for a guy like Rondale Moore would make a lot of sense.
Moore will give the offense a boost in the short and intermediate pass game and will always be one or two broken tackles away from breaking one open. It is very possible Moore could finish the season as the team’s second receiver.
There are few rookies that can match the excitement Rondale Moore brings to the football field. But along with the excitement, Moore brings a rare skill set to the table that could end up being very valuable to Cardinals.