The Browns fueled this new fire under Moore by demonstrating the potential they saw in him earlier this offseason, sending the No. 42 overall pick of the 2023 NFL Draft to the Jets in exchange for the wideout and a third-round pick (no. 74). ) selection.
Moore’s departure was a long time coming. While injuries initially undermined his outrageous expectations as a rookie, he was still fit for 11 games and flashed with potential with 43 receptions for 538 yards and five touchdowns in an otherwise dismal 2021 4-13 season for the team.
Then came last year. The Jets’ passing game generally struggled, but Moore went downright invisible at times. After making a catch for 11 yards in Week 6 and seeing no targets on the next appearance, he requested a trade that was initially denied, and Jets coach Robert Saleh scrambled him for the next game.
Although he made his way back into the WR rotation, he finished the year with just 446 yards and one score on 12 fewer goals in five more games played than in 2021.
Now with an off-season to adjust and better hedge themselves to meet Moore’s request, the Jets did just that, adding Allen Lazard to the first wave of free agency and a week later, on the same day of the Moore trade, to sign Mecole Hardman.
It finally marked the end of an arduous experience for the young widespread.
“I consider myself a positive person,” Moore said of the previous year. “Obstacles come just like how I handled last year and I feel like it’s only put me in a better position to go through life let alone football now. So from this point I want to be a better person being, a better footballer, a better brother, mother, whatever it is, because that just didn’t affect — I love football. That season didn’t just affect football. It affected my life, whether it was good or was bad, so I have to learn from that.”
As he grows from it all, Moore is pretty much in the WR Corps taking shape around quarterback Deshaun Watson.
With Amari Cooper, the undisputed top dog with all-in-one traits, and the powerful Donovan Peoples-Jones making a splash last season, Moore has the savvy and toughness to play valuable snaps alongside them. He will also have to compete against newcomer Cedric Tillman for goals, but the new landscape is brimming with possibilities.
The No. 1 priority is to turn that into a career rebirth by excelling in Cleveland. Refuting misguided opinions arising from his public split with the Jets wouldn’t be a bad side effect.
“Social media will do their job. The media is going to do their thing,” Moore said. “The people in the building know who I am and what I stand for and what I do when I go home and how I am. So I can’t really live to prove myself to everyone. And I’m still learning that. Of course I would like everyone to see how much time I put into it, how much I love football, how much I watch highlights of this, that and the third, you know what I mean? But they will see it in due time.