Redskins 2014 Draft Pick: Morgan Moses, OT

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Morgan Moses was one of the most talked about prospects coming into the draft. Now lets see how he will fit in on the Redskins.

Morgan Moses

Offensive Tackle

Height: 6’6"

Weight: 314 lbs

Virginia

3rd Round Pick (66 Overall)

Check out Bernhard Samuel's excellent predraft report here.

Strengths: The reason Morgan Moses had risen so high in mock drafts is his size. Physical makeup is incredibly important to linemen, and some teams are willing to reach on guys with the right body type even if they are very raw. Moses is a load of a player with the long arms necessary to play at the next level. You can’t really coach up these physical attributes, and Moses is just able to eat up defenders when he has a line on them. Moses is also strong for the position. During his senior year, there have been points where he has been beaten, but was able to use his raw strength to slow a guy down. Moses had the ability to be a focal point in the run game, and is able to just engulf defenders.

Weaknesses: While he has a ton of upside, Moses is still an incredibly raw player in some aspects of the game. Moses often stands up straight when blocking, ending up higher than everyone else. He was able to get away with this in college, but the athletes in the NFL will abuse him if he can’t learn to play lower. Playing up high also forces Moses into reaching out at defenders, instead of meeting them head on. In the second level especially, Moses sometimes simply redirects defenders instead of putting his hands on them and driving them. It is much too easy to shed his blocks. It is pass protection where Moses most needs to improve. Moses sometimes just concedes ground to the rusher, putting himself in the QB’s lap. There were a couple times where it looked like the QB had to adjust his throwing motion to get the ball out around Moses. Athletic rushers are also sometimes able to simply run around him, looping back to the QB. His natural foot speed isn’t all that bad, but when kicking out he takes these huge steps. It negatively affects his ability to change momentum and makes him especially susceptible to counter moves back inside.

Morgan Moses is incredibly raw and has a lot to work on before he is ready for the NFL. The potential is there however. Moses has a laundry list of technical flaws, but in college was still able to dominate. In the games I watched, he was only flat out beaten off the snap once, and was usually an overall positive on a given play. He also played well against future NFL pass rushers like Jeremiah Attaochu, Kyle Van Noy, and Vic Beasley. Offensive tackles are one of those prized positions, where if you don’t have any flaws in your game, you are going in the first round. Moses definitely needs work, but the potential is there for him to dominate at the next level. I would definitely say the Redskins got good value for him in the third round. Anecdotally, Moses had one of his better games against an excellent Virginia Tech defense last year. Cyrus Kouandjio, another prospect linked to the Redskins at various points, played the same VT defense and looked like he should have been benched.

Coming into the draft, the Redskins most glaring offensive need was along the offensive line. There were legitimately three spots that could be improved, but in my opinion, none was a bigger priority than the right tackle. My defining memory of the 2013 season was Ahmad Brooks taking Polumbus to the woodshed over and over again. Brooks is a solid player, but he is no way the pass-rushing superstar Polumbus made him appear to be. The team failed to address the need in free agency, so unless Tom Compton has finally developed, it looks like the RT is down to Polumbus and Moses. Moses is very obviously not ready to be a quality starter at the NFL level. The talent is there, but throwing him to the wolves this early might seriously hamper his development. I do not want him to be starting soon, but if Polumbus continues to play as poorly as he did last year, I’m afraid that the team will be forced to ride with Moses. The Redskins have already conceded one year of RG3’s development, they can’t afford to do so again. It terrifies me to think this, but I believe that Morgan Moses will be the starting right tackle for the Washington Redskins by the end of the year.

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