As one could reasonably imagine, the focal point for many Denver Broncos fans is the notion that Rahim Moore – because of his failure in covering Jacoby Jones in the playoffs — is a weak spot coming into training camp next month.
I, never the pessimist, will attempt to use logic to advocate for Moore, seeing as on the various message Broncos message boards, I am one of the few he consistently has in his camp.
After the NFL lockout of 2011, Moore was considered to be one of the more solid selections Denver had made in that April’s collegiate draft and his first impression was exhilarating to many fans.
In a preseason game against Buffalo, he leveled receiver Donald Jones, a play which netted him a 15-yard penalty, but won admiration from many of the Broncos faithful. However, as the season progressed, things didn’t go so well for him.
During the regular season, which gave rise to Tebowmania briefly, Moore had a difficult time breaking into the lineup as then-defensive coordinator Dennis Allen didn’t deem him to be ready. Among other things, he didn’t seem to have what it took to make it in the NFL.
As the 2012 season came, Peyton Manning was far from the only significant change to the team, as former Jacksonville Jaguars head coach and NFL linebacker, Jack Del Rio – long renowned for his defensive acuity — took over the unit.
Del Rio became confident in Moore, giving him snaps he never would have gotten under Allen, and for the most part, he did play the run solidly and seemed to find a niche.
However, the first of his errors occurred in a regular season game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a 31-23 victory, as although he deflected a Josh Freeman pass intended for Vincent Jackson, FOX commentator John Lynch derided him for having poor position.
Of course, as we Broncos fans remember, much to our chagrin, his biggest gaffe came at the most inopportune moment, thus making him a pariah among the fanbase.
Nevertheless, from what I have seen on film — now please understand that I am not a genius of Mike Mayock‘s ilk — I think there is room for improvement. Perhaps most importantly, though, is his accountability, as he told the media afterward that it was his fault and he plans to correct it.
Numerous athletes in all sports have proven to succeed after falling short initially. This is part of the beauty of sports, as most recently, we have seen LeBron James continue to write his own legendary narrative, something that is not finished by a long shot.
While not as dramatic in his sphere, Moore can do virtually the same thing. In my opinion, if anyone can correct a mistake that many high-schoolers do not commit when they play football, it’s Jack Del Rio. Conversely, if any player can learn from such an error, it’s Moore.
As is the case with most players in the NFL, and in a greater sphere, most people in society, Moore is far from a finished product, so, for better or worse, the jury is still out and I, for one, am devoutly on his side.