They wanted him all along, and now the Washington Redskins have got Morgan Moses. General manager Bruce Allen was even able to wait until Round 3 to secure the massive offensive tackle.
Moses will provide immediate competition for struggling veteran Tyler Polumbus on the right side of Washington's O-line. In fact, Moses will be expected to supplant Polumbus sooner rather than later.
It's a task the former Virginia star can manage, despite a sizeable fall down draft boards. Moses had been touted as a first-rounder by the likes of NFL.com analysts Daniel Jeremiah, Charles Davis and Charley Casserly.
But even after a slight run on players at his position, Moses remained on the board. That was probably due to some technical issues, as ESPN.com Redskins beat reporter John Keim points out:
There were also issues with inconsistency, as Washington Post writer Mike Jones noted:
Yet, despite any concerns, the Redskins were keen suitors for Moses. In mid-April, DraftInsider.net reporter Tony Pauline predicted Washington wouldn't overlook Moses if they had the chance to take him.
Pauline's assertion proved prophetic. Now Washington has a raw but physically imposing tackle, ready to add greater size and power to its otherwise finesse offensive front.
The team still runs the zone scheme brought to town by previous head coach Mike Shanahan. The autocratic sideline general favored slightly built blockers to make the system work.
But new head coach Jay Gruden has often preferred bigger linemen in the trenches. He favored size while running the offense for the Cincinnati Bengals.
Moses certainly brings size to D.C. But more important, he knows how to use his size in tandem with move skills, to be a force in both the running and passing games.
CBS Sports analysts Derek Stephens and Dane Brugler describe how Moses uses his frame on the move:
Exhibits a strong first step and impressive burst for his size, when asked to fire through to the second level as a run blocker. Powerful hands to latch and steer against opponents of all sizes. Does a good job sustaining effort and contact to the whistle, and makes a concerted attempt to drive his opponent off the block rather than simply occupying him. Impressive lower-half flexibility and anchoring strength when absorbing a bull-rush.
Gruden should be particularly enamored by the part referring to the burst to get to the second level. That is a crucial asset in zone-blocking schemes.
But Moses' greatest value will be protecting quarterback Robert Griffin III. He was sacked 48 times in 2013.
That has to change, especially since Gruden will reduce the team's reliance on the read-option offense, per Jones of the Washington Post. That will mean more time in the pocket for Griffin.
If he responds well to coaching, Moses can ease Polumbus out of the frame and become a starter as a rookie. He will help make two-time 1,000-yard runner Alfred Morris even more dominant, while also improving the integrity of the pocket around Griffin.
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