He [Denarius Moore] looks good. He is fast. He has made some big plays for them. It’s those one strike plays. He is a gifted guy, a very talented guy. We will have to keep an eye on him.
-Brett Keisel (Steelers.com)
Although he is currently leading his team in rushing yards, Terrelle Pryor has made some significant strides as a passer this season. Denarius Moore has emerged as the favorite target of the inexperienced signal-caller during Oakland’s first six games, and Moore’s 2013 statistics reflect the growing rapport between the two players.
The former Tennessee Volunteer leads the Raiders in catches (25), receiving yards (399), and touchdown receptions (four), and has been a threat to break big plays whenever he has touched the ball.
A raw player coming out of the University of Tennessee in 2011, Moore has steadily developed into one of the more underrated wide receivers in the entire league. He is currently on pace to shatter the career-highs he set last fall (51 catches, 741 yards, seven touchdowns), and his chemistry with Pryor definitely gives the Raiders some hope for the future.
Pittsburgh’s players, like Brett Keisel mentioned above, are fully aware of the type of weapon that Moore can be. Moore caught five passes for 45 yards in Oakland’s 34-31 win over Pittsburgh last year, and hauled in an important fourth quarter touchdown which cut the Steelers’ then-lead to 31-28.
Ike Taylor will likely be tasked with covering Moore for much of the upcoming game, and it would be an enormous plus if the veteran is able to render the Raiders’ best wide receiver ineffective.
Containing Moore will be a high priority for Pittsburgh’s defense tomorrow, and they cannot allow the talented wide receiver to make any “splash plays.” Missing tackles or falling asleep in coverage must not happen, and a speedy wide receiver like Moore will make the Steelers pay if those types of things occur.
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