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2023 Dynasty Fantasy Football Faller: Elijah Moore

Elijah Moore - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

Former New York Jets wide receiver Elijah Moore was selected No. 34 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft after a stellar career and final season at Ole Miss. The 5'10" wideout demonstrated elite speed and route running during the pre-draft process and became a promising dynasty fantasy football asset before he took a snap in the NFL.

Moore's rookie campaign started slow, but he caught fire in the middle of the season, with his breakout game coming in primetime on Thursday Night Football. Against the Colts, Moore caught seven of his eight targets for 84 yards and two touchdowns – posting the first weekly WR1 finish of his career. He'd go on to post a WR3 and WR finish in the coming weeks, but his season ended after 11 games with a quad injury. Still, he shot up the dynasty rankings after posting big-time fantasy performances in year one. However, his sophomore season fell far short of expectations – making him one of the biggest dynasty fallers heading into 2023.

In this edition of dynasty risers and fallers, we'll dive into Moore's 2022 season, his current dynasty value and market, and his 2023 season outlook with his new team. Let's get to it!

Editor's Note: Our incredible team of writers won two writing awards and received 12 award nominations by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. A big congrats to our very own Byron Lindeque (Golf) and Jordan McAbee (NASCAR) for both winning Writer Of The Year awards! Be sure to follow RotoBaller's analysis and advice all year long, and win more. Win More With RotoBaller!

 

2022 Season In Review

In Moore's season debut against the Baltimore Ravens, he caught five of his seven targets for 49 yards – finishing as the WR50 in half-PPR leagues. It was far from a week-winning fantasy day, but seven targets were nothing to panic about. However, his 7.4 fantasy points would turn out to be his highest total for the next 10 weeks.

Panic did start to creep in among Moore's fantasy managers when he followed it up with a three-catch, 41-yard performance (five targets) in Week 2. He saw heavy usage again in Week 3, earning nine targets. He caught just four of them for 49 yards, making it the third time in as many weeks he failed to eclipse 50 yards and finished outside the top 50 fantasy wideouts. He then secured three passes for 53 yards in Week 4, but the weeks to follow would prove even more problematic.

From Week 5 through 8 (four games), Moore caught just ONE of his five total targets for 11 yards. After a 1.6-fantasy points performance in Week 5, he posted three straight goose eggs. Moore had clearly fallen out of favor with the Jets' coaching staff, and after requesting a trade ahead of the trade deadline, he was inactive for Week 9.

The team maintained that they would not trade him, so he returned after the team's Week 10 bye. The game logs looked eerily similar after that. From Week 11 to the end of the season in Week 18, Moore caught just 21 of his 35 targets for 243 yards and one touchdown. During that stretch, he posted weekly wide receiver finishes of the WR73, WR22, WR72, WR36, WR47, WR80, WR75, and WR97. He posted just one WR2 or better finish all season, and by that time, fantasy managers had him solidly out of their lineups – and oftentimes on the waiver wire.

With the QB committee of Joe Flacco, Zach Wilson, and Mike White leading the offense, Moore totaled 37 receptions on 65 targets for 446 yards and one touchdown. He regressed in all statistical categories from his rookie season, despite playing in five more games. Per Playerprofiler.com data, Moore finished outside the top 70 wide receivers in receptions, receiving yards, touchdowns, target share (11.7%), target rate (14.1%), air yards share (15.7%), yards after catch, yards per route run (0.95), and yards per target.

Moore finished as the WR83 on the season after having an average draft position of WR37 in preseason drafts. Meanwhile, first-round rookie receiver Garrett Wilson didn't seem to be affected by poor QB play – totaling 1,103 yards and four touchdowns on 83 receptions, earning Offensive Rookie of the Year honors.

 

Elijah Moore Dynasty Value/Market

While player valuations will vary widely from league to league, KeepTradeCut.com is a helpful resource for getting an idea of a player's value. These crowdsourced rankings have Moore as the dynasty WR43 and the 104th most valuable player or draft pick overall (single-QB leagues). This time last year (mid-April), Moore was ranked as the WR16. Now, he's ranked near the likes of Kadarius Toney, James Cook, Michael Mayer, and Evan Engram.

Elijah-Moore-Dynasty-Value

Elijah Moore Dynasty Value

He was once commanding a first-round rookie pick on the trade block, but now it'd be tough to convince a dynasty manager to fork up a mid-second-round selection for Moore. While he did see a small value bump after being traded to the Cleveland Browns, the dynasty community won't forget the disastrous season he just had, so he'll have to become a proven producer once again before he reaches top-24 territory in 2023.

A fresh start with a new team could be what he needs, but his team gave him away along with a third-round pick for just a second-round pick, so it's not a glaring endorsement of success to come.

 

2023 Fantasy Football Outlook

Moore's current 2023 FFPC ADP has him coming off the board at 124 overall (46th WR). It's easy to imagine a scenario where Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson returns to elite form and the offense with Amari Cooper, Donovan Peoples-Jones, Nick Chubb, David Njoku, and Moore flourish, but it's far from a certainty.

That said, the team is expected to be more pass-happy this season, so hopefully, there will be plenty of volume to go around. Cleveland doesn't have a first-round pick in the upcoming draft and moved its second-rounder to acquire more, so he's clearly going to be a big part of the offensive attack in 2023. Moore should have a chance to finish second in targets behind Cooper, but there's also a chance he simply isn't as good as his enthusiasts want him to be.

Overall, his bargain price at WR46 is worth the stab. At that price point, a low-end WR3 season is all he has to produce to pay solid dividends for fantasy rosters. He's not likely to be negatively affected by the 2023 NFL Draft since Cleveland doesn't have much ammo, so his ADP can only rise while wideouts on other teams see suppressed value after the draft wraps up. Having at least some exposure to Moore in 2023 feels like a smart move.



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