After a terrible first 12 weeks of the season for Jake Delhomme (8-to-18 TD/interception rate) in which the Carolina Panthers struggled to a meager 4-7 record, the Carolina Panthers may have struck gold in quarterback Matt Moore. Delhomme helped the team lose winnable games, which kept them out of NFC South contention. Still, the Panthers, in desperate need of good quarterbacking, found it late last season in Moore, a 25 year old former un-drafted free agent out of Oregon State.
Down the stretch, Moore led the team on a 4-1 stretch to finish the season an even 8-8. During that stretch, Moore compiled a 102.98 QB rating,a 63% completion rate, 990 passing yards, 8 touchdowns, and just 1 interception. The only game Carolina lost during that stretch was a 20-10 nail-biter in New England. Otherwise, the Panthers were nearly flawless in a tough stretch against the Vikings, Giants, and Saints, winning by a combined score of 90-26.
ADP: N/A (not in top 30 quarterbacks selected)
By the numbers:
- Moore's success is not new to him. Because of the limited roles he's had in the NFL, I had to dig back to his two college seasons at Oregon State to find adequate statistics, but the results are encouraging. In his two seasons for the Beavers, Moore had a combined 5,733 passing yards and 29 touchdowns. He also had a high completion%, however, his 26 interceptions were a blight to his numbers.
- Just 25 years old, Moore's career record as a quarterback in the NFL is 6-2 with a 59% completion rate, 1,783 yards, 11 touchdowns, and 7 interceptions. After the great stretch he had last season, he is almost guaranteed the starting quarterback job despite the arrival of rookies Jimmy Clausen and Tony Pike. Still, knowing that he is waiting in the wings to replace him if he slips up, having Clausen around may serve to push Moore's game to new heights.
- Moore's solid performance last year actually shouldn't be such a shocker. He is surrounded by a very solid group of players. He has a good group of receivers to target in Steve Smith, Dwyane Jarrett, and Brandon LaFell, not to mention an outstanding duo to hand the ball off to in DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart
Summary: Moore is a guy who has all the supporting cast to have a good season and be your backup quarterback, and you might not even have to get him in your draft. If your league has 12-14 teams he's even worth a look as your starter. His ADP is virtually nonexistent, so you can get him for dirt cheap. I can't seem to emphasize it enough: he is a cheap but excellent guy who can be your bye week quarterback or an injury fill in.