Recently Released LB Dontay Moch Would Make For An Interesting Summer Project

The Arizona Cardinals released outside linebacker Dontay Moch on Thursday after just one season and while I did think the Cincinnati Bengals reached for him in the third-round of the 2011 NFL Draft, I’ve always been intrigued by him when I studied his college tape prior to that draft.

Moch was combine phenom back in 2011 as he ran 4.44 40-yard dash and vertical jumped 42 inches. In fact, his KEI score was an impressive 73.67. That should be a lesson that combine numbers don’t mean jack squat.

During his four years at Nevada, Moch registered 30 total sacks and 63 total tackles for loss. However, despite his college success, his first three years in the NFL haven’t gone well as he not only struggled with the Bengals defense, but also was hampered by injuries and a four game suspension for testing positive for a banned substance.

A few weeks ago, new Bengals defensive coordinator Paul Guenther, who was the linebackers coach in Cincinnati when Moch was drafted, talked about how tough it was on his former player to make the transition from edge rusher to outside linebacker.

“Marvin (Lewis) and I go around and around about this. I always tell him it takes one year to get (acclimated). For a guy who never dropped, he always rushed. He has to learn.  I’ve done it,” Guenther said. “Marvin coached linebackers in the 3-4 where you tell them to just go to the flat and sit there.

“In our system you’ve got tight ends, you’ve got backs, you’ve got progressions, and the spacing and up front fits. And how you take on the fullback. That’s tough for guy who’s never done it. To do those things and then move back five yards and stand, it’s different. To me, a year if you’re lucky.”

Moch has played all of 73 snaps on defense since being drafted and 68 of those came last season with the Cardinals. Assuming he’s healthy, the 25 year-old linebacker could make for an interesting summer project for the Steelers, who right now could use a lot of backup bodies at the outside linebacker position.

I’m not trying to say Moch will become the next James Harrison, but being as the Steelers could have him right now for a minimum salary without any guarantees, I think it might be worth seeing if he can be fixed before his left foot joins his right foot out of the league for good. If he doesn’t work out, just release him.

  • OIF3gunner


  • Paddy

    Steelers could use a player like Burfict in Cincy

  • steelster

    yeah, no kidding

  • PA2AK

    is he a FA?! they’d be crazy to let him get away! everyone could use a couple players like Burfict!

  • steelster

    Love your thinking on this one Dave. Why not give this guy a try?

  • Kevin Gobleck

    I thought Arizona picked up our ex players, not the other way around. Either way though I wouldn’t mind seeing what he can do

  • Shannon Stephenson

    Just his combine numbers say lets take a look

  • Matt Manzo

    I say sign em all! Bring in as many OLBs as we can!

  • cp72

    Is he a decent special teams player? You’re gonna be a developmental linebacker would be nice if he could be a special teams player.

  • Alexander Sebastian Heath

    beggars can’t choose. At least invite him over for a visit and questionnaire.

  • gene mann

    He was a hugh force in Nevada this is a type of move that the steelers need to be making

  • blackandgoldBullion

    Have you seen Arizona’s D play lately? We could be upgrading by signing their castoffs to at least be backups.

  • Matt Manzo

    He’s listed at 6.2 255! With that speed and that size hell yes being him in for a try!

  • Kevin Gobleck

    Oh trust me I welcome him here with open arms, i was just joking around with the ex players part

  • 804Stiller

    Burfict was humbled by his draft stock dropping due to character and work habit concerns. Marvin took a chance and won. And, it was very low risk as he was an undrafted FA. Ironically, we had like 4 7th round picks that year. The interesting thing will be how Burfict handles it when he gets paid. He seems genuinely humbled and hungry when he got to Cincy. Wonder if he get lax when he gets $$$. I remember Mayock killing him during that draft and also one of his coaches from ASU making a statement in regards to his work ethic. Man, all that guy has done since he has been in the league is make tackles.

  • Douglas Andrews

    Good project for Coach Peezy and Coach Butler. I say go for it give him a shot

  • MC

    At least there is tape of him in the NFL so you know what you’re getting. If you bring him in he can’t be any worse than Cris Carter and then its no longer a must that they draft an OLB come draft day.

  • James Kling

    I’d kick the tires on him. Has the measurables, has gotten his feet wet, now just needs to put it all together. Anyone know what his 4-game suspension was? Pot, roids, Adderall?

  • steeltown

    We need some fresh blood at OLB sign him up!