Toward the end of last season, Chris Moore began to show promise as a wide receiver, catching 12 passes for 152 yards and two touchdowns in his last six games. Overall, he finished tied for third among the Ravens in touchdown catches (three) and ranked fifth in receiving yards (248) in 13 games, including four starts.
This season, Moore has nine receptions for 79 yards, but is still searching for his first score and has yet to start a game. Rather than be frustrated by a reduction in work, he has accepted what is expected of him.
“I know my role,” he said Wednesday. “They want me to be here and use me when they need me. So it might be a little frustrating, but you’ve got to be patient and grind it out. It’s a long season, and I’ll get my opportunities. I’ve just got to make the most of them.”
Moore, 25, is level-headed about his situation. He said he figured he’d get fewer snaps after the organization signed John Brown, Michael Crabtree and Willie Snead IV in the offseason and drafted rookies Jordan Lasley and Jaleel Scott. And he pointed out that his greater workload last season was a result of injuries that sidelined Jeremy Maclin and Michael Campanaro for several games.
Despite the slide down the depth chart, Moore, the second of five fourth-round picks in 2016, said his approach to practices remains unchanged.
“During the week, I’m pretty much a starter when I practice,” he said. “I go out there and take all of the starters’ reps, and I just continue to work hard. I practice like I’m a starter so that when I’m in that position, it won’t be a surprise or anything new for me.”
After catching three balls for 12 yards in a season-high 39 snaps in the Ravens’ 21-0 win over the Tennessee Titans on Oct. 14, Moore caught one pass for 14 yards and carried the ball once for nine yards on 30 snaps in a 24-23 loss to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.
Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg acknowledged the onus is on him to get Moore more involved on offense.
“He deserves it,” Mornhinweg said last week. “We certainly have plays for him in the game plan. On occasion, the ball doesn’t get to him because of many different variables. But yes, he’s a fine player. We’re trying to utilize him just a little bit.”