It appears that Georgia Tech’s starting wide receivers will be Jeff Greene and Jeremy Moore. Greene, you probably know a little about. He came in last fall and played as a true freshman along with Darren Waller, mostly on special teams. (Here’s a Q&A that Heather Dinich of espn.com did with him a few days ago.). Good size-speed ratio and has ability. Moore is a lesser known.
He came into camp behind Greene and Chris Jackson, but moved up to the first rung of the depth chart. Former wide receiver Tyler Melton, a teammate of Moore’s for three years, offered the following when I spoke with him a week or two ago for a story about the wide receivers.
“I think Jeremy’s going to be the surprise of the year, for sure,” he said. “He’s been hampered by injuries, so he hasn’t had the opportunity to showcase his talent, but I feel like, if given the opportunity, he’s definitely going to shine.”
Melton described Moore as having a smooth stride, speed and quickness and can catch the ball cleanly.
“He doesn’t body catch,” Melton said of his fellow Texan. “He snags everything out of the air.”
Coach Paul Johnson’s summary of Moore from ACC Media Days: “Jeremy Moore’s a young man who’s been hurt since he’s been there. Got through spring. He’s got a lot of ball skills, can run.”
(Johnson at his pithy best. He’s like Hemingway in that way. Johnson on Christopher Columbus: “Gets lost sometimes. Can sail a little bit. We’ll see.”)
Moore tore his ACL in 2010, his redshirt freshman season, causing him to miss the whole year, and then played only against Western Carolina, Middle Tennessee State and Kansas.
“He got hurt during summer camp (in 2011),” Melton said. “That kind of hurt his chances of playing throughout the year. He kind of got behind the 8-ball with that one.”
(Melton, if you’re wondering, is back in Houston. He didn’t get drafted or signed as a rookie free agent, but a couple teams had told him to be ready, so he has been working out, hoping for a call. He spent the summer working out and teaching math and mentoring kids in a Houston-area program for high school kids.)
If Moore is as capable as advertised, the two big questions, obviously, are if Moore can stay healthy (he’s packed on some muscle, but he’s slender) and how quickly he can find a groove at wide receiver, both blocking and pass catching. For someone to have played three games going into his junior season is, obviously, not a lot.
When I spoke with him for the story, he came across as team-first, but very ready to play. I asked him if part of him was glad when Stephen Hill left early for the draft.
While he was happy for Hill, a close friend, “I looked at it that way, as my opportunity, but I always had the mindset of working hard no matter what the opposition was. Just keep working hard and I know I will get my turn one day.”
That turn has apparently arrived.
For more reading:
A story I wrote about Moore after he’d signed with Tech.
WR competition breakdown from Aug. 6.