Elijah Moore is an intriguing prospect for dynasty fantasy football. He does not profile as your prototypical alpha WR for a team with his lack of size (5’9″ and 178 lbs) but he was highly productive working primarily from the slot. He should work as a slot WR at the next level for the New York Jets and that could mean plenty of PPR points for fantasy football managers.
In the few days after the NFL Draft, one of the teams whose draft class was highly touted was the Jets. In the first round, they drafted their quarterback of the future in Zach Wilson then proceeded to trade up and fortify their offensive line with the selection of Alijah Vera-Tucker out of USC. Both Wilson and Vera-Tucker may prove to be great value for the Jets in the next couple of years but maybe the greatest value pick they had in the entire draft was their second-round pick, Moore, out of Ole Miss.
Athletic/ Production Profile
Although he is not a big WR he is extremely shifty with a 98th percentile agility score and ran a 4.35-second forty-yard dash on his pro day. He checks a lot of the boxes for a WR entering the NFL to be able to produce. He had a college dominator rating of 45.5% (91st percentile), a college target share of 35.2% (96th percentile), he is an early declare, and he has a young breakout age of 19.4 years old (83rd percentile).
Moore broke out his sophomore year after being freed from the shadows of D.K. Metcalf and A.J. Brown who he was behind on the depth chart in his freshman season. In his Sophomore year, he commanded 117 targets securing 67 of them for 850 yards and six TDs in 12 games. He also had a 35.2% target share.
In 2020, his Junior season at Ole Miss, Elijah Moore had an over 30% target share and parleyed that into 86 receptions for 1193 yards and eight touchdowns. That was good enough to lead all of college football in both catches and receiving yards per game.
What makes that even more impressive is that he was able to put those numbers up in eight games. According to PFF, Moore had a step or more of separation on 90% of his targets which was the highest in power five football. He also caught 97% of catchable targets beyond the line of scrimmage.
in 2020, Moore paced the NCAA with 10.8 receptions, 149.1 yards per game, and an 85% catch rate. He was a first-team AP All American, first-team All-SEC, and a Biletnikoff finalist. He holds a few Ole Miss records following the 2020 season as well. Moore holds most receiving yards in a single game (238), most single-season receptions (86), tied for most single-game receptions (14), and was third in single-season receiving yards (1,193). Moore put up three 200 yard receiving games in 2020 and only had two games under 100 yards. It was a truly remarkable season.
Does the Play Style Mean Fantasy Football Success?
The way Moore wins is not with his size which is why it does not bother me much. He is a savvy route runner and great at creating space off of the line of scrimmage. Elijah also is good at finding holes in zone coverage. He has high-end stop-start ability and he’s excellent at creating yards after the catch.
He possesses the ability to adjust to the ball and has pretty good play speed. Although he is a smaller WR he is actually pretty solid in contested catch situations he definitely has that dog in him and is not afraid of taking a hit. Moore has sure hands and hardly ever drops a pass. He possibly could struggle against press coverage in the NFL as he did not have to deal with it much in college. As an NFL slot WR, I think he could produce very well for his team and for fantasy football managers.
Fantasy Football Year-One Opportunity
Elijah Moore was picked with the second pick of the second round by the Jets and his offensive coordinator is very excited to have him on the team. The Jets never considered trading back because they saw him as a top-25 player and when their pick was getting close Lafleur just kept saying “he’s slipping, he’s slipping!” according to Robert Saleh. When a team is passionate about a player he should have every chance at an opportunity year one. He also joins fellow rookie and signal-caller Zach Wilson. Arriving together they can build chemistry and grow into a viable QB/WR stack even.
Moore currently sits behind Corey Davis, Denzel Mims, and Jamison Crowder on the depth chart at this point in the off-season but prior to the start of the 2021 season, many things can change. Even if it does not, Moore can still provide some instant fantasy impact. His versatility will allow him to be used in a multitude of ways.
New Jets Head Coach Robert Saleh was recently asked about Moore and stated, “He can be in the backfield, he can get those jet sweeps. He can play the X. He can take the top off of the coverage. His ability to separate on routes, run the jet sweeps, come out of the backfield — he’s extremely versatile. I’m ecstatic he was able to get to us. There’s not a lot of things he can’t do.”
Moore will be used quite a bit this upcoming season and could potentially develop into a consistent flex play in his rookie year. If he overtakes Crowder at any point this season he automatically has WR2 upside. There is no established WR1 on the team and all of the WRs will have the opportunity to cement themselves as that alpha for the team. Wilson has no favorite target and Moore could become just that. Moore may not come out the gate guns blazing though as many rookie QBs struggle to produce year one.
When It comes to Dynasty, Elijah Moore has the chance to be one of the best wide receivers from this draft class. He comes into a situation where he is going to have the opportunity to build a rapport and grow with Zach Wilson. He can quickly become his security blanket and be peppered with targets on a game in game out basis. If we want to project and look at other NFL players to see what his fantasy potential can look like it may be difficult.
Although Moore does not compare himself to other NFL players there was one pre-draft comp that caught my eye. Lance Zierlein of NFL.com compared Moore to the likes of Antonio Brown. Now I know what you are thinking, matching Antonio Browns NFL productivity may be nearly impossible but if Moore has the opportunity he can consistently put up back-end wide receiver 1 numbers for years to come. Moore is an exciting player to keep an eye on and should be a fantasy favorite for quite some time.
Elijah Moore Current Dynasty Fantasy Football ADP: Draft or pass?
Moore has an ADP of 18 or WR10 and that is an easy decision for us to make. I think we could easily see multiple WR2 years out of Moore for fantasy football with a possibility for more. The way the San Francisco 49ers play, they get the ball to their playmakers in space and let them create after the catch which may be how the offense now runs in the Big Apple.
If this is the case, Moore could produce early and often. Mike Lafleur was the passing game coordinator for them last season and we expect him to run a similar style of offense. Arrows are pointing up for Moore and we can see him easily outproducing his ADP.