Our very own Dan Kadar has been talking up the potential of Texas A&M defensive end Damontre Moore for some time now. I finally got the chance to see him in action as A&M took on LSU last weekend. While The LSU defensive ends Sam Montgomery and Barkevious Mingo saw all spotlight before the game, Moore stole the show. He left an impression on me, so lets look at the tape. Credit to @Jmpasq on twitter for the video footage.
His pass-rushing ability is what he's going to get paid for in the NFL. Immediately I liked how he went about his rushes. The natural angles of attack that he took made him a small a target for the offensive tackle to block. Here's what I mean.
Moore uses one arm to punch the chest of the tackle and hold him at arms distance. The tackle only has access to Moore's shoulder. Here's where Moore exceeds, he can use the tackles block attempt to get lower to the ground and take a quicker angle to the quarterback. He managed a sack on this play.
Here's another example. This time rushing against the right tackle.
Once again the tackle can only make contact with his shoulder and not his chest. As Moore turns the corner, the block is nearly beaten and the hunt for the sack is on.
Moore also displays a good inside move.
Here he's lined up over the left tackle.
He lines up his upper body to show an outside rush and draw the tackle outside.
He moves inside, drawing initial contact. But just as before, the tackle struggles to get a hand on his chest.
Moore breaks through easily and eventually brings down the quarterback.
His ability to take effective angles makes up for his lack of burst. A big negative I noticed while watching Moore was that he's slow to burst off the line, he doesn't have that elite first step. As I said, his angling makes up for this somewhat, but its something to keep an eye on. At the NFL level, offensive tackles can all drop step quickly, if Moore is unable to attack the outside should of the tackle quick enough, then tackles will get their hands on his chest and win blocks.
Moore's angling isn't the only thing that makes up for his lack of burst. He's an above average run defender and is often able to use his angling to crash down on inside runs.
Moore identifies the play extremely quickly, attacking the inside shoulder of the tackle.
By the time the back secures the ball, Moore is in position to make the play despite being held.
He's unfortunate to clash knee's with an offensive lineman at an odd angle and goes down injured, but not before he forces the back to run away from him.
Just like when his pass-rushing, Moore is effective in run defense from either side of the defensive line.
Moore lands a fantastic punch to the chest of the tackle, winning him the leverage on the block.
He blows up inside and makes the tackle on the back all while holding off the tackle from that initial punch.
His run defense for a 250-pound 4-3 defensive end is impressive. It definitely helps gloss over his burst. The thing that makes you almost completely forget about his burst is his motor. It's relentless, I never saw him quit on a play. On countless occasions he was finishing off an assisted tackle or jumping on the end of a pile to confirm the play was dead. Here's two of my favorite examples.
In the first quarter, LSU call for a run behind the left tackle. Moore happened to be lined up over the right tackle. A lot of players in this situation would just run along at the back of the line and give up on the play.
The back is turning the corner and about to burst upfield, but Moore is busting a gut to get there.
Moore collides full speed into the back and pushes him out of bounds. He ran from the opposite side of the field and saved a potentially big gain on the play.
The other example came from the second quarter.
Again it's another run play. The quarterback pitches the ball to the back before coming over to help the tackle double team Moore.
At this point, Moore looks taken out of the play, but he doesn't give up.
He wriggles free and fights his way to the running back. He falls on top of him to help end the play for a minimal gain, all down to his desire to keep pumping his legs.
As you can probably tell, Moore left a big impression on me. His lack of an elite first step does concern me, but I think his overall game makes him worthy of being in the discussion for top pass-rushers in this draft class. He takes some excellent angles on rushes, is a solid run defender and never stops fighting to make a play. Overall that makes him a very intriguing prospect.