Virginia has produced a handful of NFL tackles in recent years, including D’Brickashaw Ferguson of the New York Jets and Branden Albert of the Kansas City Chiefs. Morgan Moses is the latest Cavalier to follow that path.
The 6-foot-6, 332-pound Moses has the potential to be one of the surprises of this year’s draft class, according to some scouts, as he often gets overlooked due to the attention received by Texas A&M’s Jake Matthews and Auburn’s Greg Robinson, considered all but locks to be taken off the board in the first 10 picks. Moses helped pave the way for Kevin Parks, who became Virginia’s first 1,000-yard rusher in almost a decade last season.
Big, tall, and with long arms, Moses is a natural when it comes to pass protection. He played at both right and left tackle spots during his college career and made major strides from his junior to senior campaign. CBS Sports’ Rob Rang calls him a “dancing bear,” touting his mammoth size yet nimble feet — much like the Denver Broncos’ Ryan Clady, who has surfaced as one of the best blindside protectors in the league.
The knock on Moses is his run blocking. He needs to get more consistent in that regard, and that could be solved by improving his balance. At times he fails to get low, which results in him unable to push players to the second level of the defense. Moses also dealt with weight issues throughout his career.
Moses comes in as the No. 23 prospect, according to Todd McShay, and the fifth tackle behind the aforementioned Matthews and Robinson, as well as Taylor Lewan and Cyrus Kouandijo. He ranks No. 36 by CBS Sports, and the sixth-rated tackle.
One feasible landing spot could be with the Arizona Cardinals at No. 20, a team that’ll need to address offensive tackle sometime in this draft. Eric Winston is an impending free agent, and the teams needs to sure up their line — whether it’s with their first-round pick or the No. 52 pick in Round 2.
The New Orleans Saints could also snag Moses. Charles Brown and Zach Strief are both set to hit free agency, and only Terron Armstead — a rookie last season — is an option. New Orleans has needs at linebacker and in the secondary, but tackle as well.