New Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Lance Moore is moving from one Super Bowl-winning quarterback to another, after spending his career up to this point with the New Orleans Saints and Drew Brees.
No doubt that was a major draw for him as a free agent after the Saints released him, to be able to move to a team with a quarterback of a similar caliber. But that doesn’t mean it won’t take adjustments to get on the same page.
Moore was one of several players who spoke to the media during the opening of Phase One of the offseason program, and he was asked about the difference between working with Brees, a short, more timing-based passer, versus Ben Roethlisberger, a very big quarterback with a bigger arm who likes to ad lib more often.
They’re different style quarterbacks. I would say Ben’s got a little bit stronger arm, maybe a lot stronger arm. Just from a couple of days throwing with him here, that’s something that kind of jumps out at me. If you’re kind of, I call it lazy with your eyes, that ball will zoom right past you.
That’s something I’ll have to adjust to. I feel like the quarterback should never have to really adjust to the receiver. The receiver should make those adjustments and make things right with the quarterback, because he’s the one pulling the trigger. And if they’re waiting on you, it’s going to make it tough to get things done.
I’ve been around long enough. I’ve played with, at least in practice, a bunch of different quarterbacks who have different styles. The more we work together, the smoother that will be.
The transition should be smooth when it comes to catching passes from Bruce Gradkowski, the team’s backup quarterback. Gradkowski and Moore were teammates in college, and in fact the former helped recruit Moore to join the Steelers once the news came out that he was released by the Saints.
But he’s not completely unfamiliar with Roethlisberger, either. Though they’ve never shared the same huddle before, the two did face off in college, where Moore said that he was the same player he is now, making “some of those crazy throws that a lot of quarterbacks aren’t even thinking about making”.
Still, having been on the opposite sideline from Roethlisberger for a game in college doesn’t help establish a catching rhythm, so there’s still plenty of work ahead of the pair in order to get comfortable with one another.
For Moore, there’s no “set time frame” for that to happen. “The more work you put in, the easier it will get. Hopefully, we’ll get that sooner rather than later”.
But going from one Pro Bowl-caliber quarterback to another certainly helps, even if they have a different style. “I definitely count my blessings every day”, he said about the opportunity to go from Brees to Roethlisberger after his release.