By Tony DelSignore Jr.
Signed in the off-season from the New Orleans Saints, veteran Lance Moore was brought in to replace some of the production vacated by Jerricho Cotchery and Emmanuel Sanders. The Pittsburgh Steelers receiving corps was lacking a real veteran presence until Moore was signed. He will bring energy and consistency to the Steelers passing attack this season.
When healthy, Moore was fantastic during his tenure with the Saints. Although he is on the smaller side, he has never struggled to find the end zone. Moore has 24 touchdowns over his past four seasons and somewhat quietly, 38 touchdowns during his eight years in the league. Playing with Drew Brees obviously has something to do with that but he and Ben Roethlisberger have been working hard on their chemistry. Earlier in the offseason, Moore said, “I would say that Ben has a little bit stronger of an arm (than Brees), maybe a lot stronger arm”.
Big Ben will love having Moore in the slot when the Steelers are running their no-huddle offense. Moore is a crisp route runner and can get in and out of his breaks quickly. While we can’t ignore the huge piece of the Steelers passing game that departed in free agency, I believe Moore will be able to replace Cotchery effectively as a slot receiver.
Last year, Moore was hobbled by numerous injuries but had 22 touchdowns over the previous three seasons. The upside for Roethlisberger is that Moore registered his best season as a pro in 2012, when he tallied 65 receptions, 1,041 yards and six touchdowns. If Moore can return to form, he will be a huge addition to the Steelers up-tempo passing attack.
Moore and Heath Miller will take many of the underneath routes in the Steelers offense, while Antonio Brown and Markus Wheaton will be able stretch the field.
According to Fantasy Football Calculator (which tracks average draft position of every player in real and mock fantasy drafts throughout the offseason), Moore is not even being selected in the first 16 rounds. Moore is likely a waiver wire candidate only in your league, and I wouldn’t recommend targeting him in your draft unless an injury were to occur with Brown or Wheaton. Moore is nothing more than a deep PPR league flex play. Moore will be much more valuable to the Steelers than to your fantasy team.
My season projections for Lance Moore are: 38 receptions, 485 yards, 3 touchdowns.
Follow me on Twitter at @TonyD_12 and @SteelersDepot for more Steelers fantasy analysis and projections throughout the 2014 season.
2014 Fantasy Football Profile: Steelers WR Antonio Brown
2014 Fantasy Football Profile: Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger
2014 Fantasy Football Profile: Steelers TE Heath Miller
2014 Fantasy Football Profile: Steelers RB Le’Veon Bell
2014 Fantasy Football Profile: Steelers WR Markus Wheaton