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2024 Buccaneers Free Agent Focus: David Moore

David Moore became a productive member of the Bucs' receiver rotation during the team's playoff stretch run, turning in two huge catch-and-run plays, but he's now ticketed for free agency again


David Moore didn't sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers until a couple weeks after the 2023 NFL Draft, and he wasn't on the team's active roster until December 13. Still, he was responsible for two of the Buccaneers' five longest touchdown plays of the season and both were huge moments in perhaps the team's two most rousing wins.

Moore started the season on the Buccaneers' practice squad but became a fixture on game day over the last nine weeks of the campaign, postseason included, following an injury to rookie wideout Rakim Jarrett. The Buccaneers first elevated him from the practice squad three times, the maximum allowed for any one player, then promoted him to the active roster in Week 15. By snap counts over those nine weeks, Moore was functionally the team's fourth receiver behind Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and rookie Trey Palmer.

In a 34-20 win over the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field in Week 15, Moore iced the victory with a 52-yard touchdown catch, snaring a short pass in a tight window and then faking out or out-running for Green Bay defenders. Four weeks later, in a 32-9 Wild Card thrashing of the Philadelphia Eagles, Moore caught a Baker Mayfield pass on a crossing route and once again made it all the way to the end zone for a 44-yard score despite having multiple defenders in his path.

After the victory in Green Bay, Head Coach Todd Bowles spoke about Moore becoming a useful part of the offense down the stretch.

"He can make some plays all over the place, he can move around, he [has] experience in the offense, he [has] experience, he can play, he [has] great hands, and he's a good utility guy for us," said Bowles. "We rotate guys in and out depending on the packages, but he's a big part of that."

Of course, the contract that Moore signed when he was promoted in December was a one-year deal, which means he's once again headed towards free agency. Did he show enough in 2023 to prompt the Buccaneers to want to keep him in their passing attack in 2024?

Currently, Moore is one of 18 players from Tampa Bay's 2023 roster who could become unrestricted free agents on March 13, and it's not likely the team will be able to retain all of them for the 2024 season. Priorities on that list will be set and pursued. And so, in the weeks leading up to the start of the new league year, we are going to look at 10 players who are currently poised to become unrestricted free agents in mid-March. This is the full schedule of our 2024 Free Agent Focus rundown:

This list is subject to change based on potential roster moves in the coming weeks. However, we will continue today with a player who made a late splash in 2023.

Player: David Moore

Position: Wide Receiver

Age at the Start of the 2024 Season: 29

Experience: Entering seventh NFL season

How Acquired: Signed as a free agent on May 15, 2023.

Previous Contract(s): As a seventh-round draft pick by the Seattle Seahawks in 2017, Moore initially signed the standard four-year deal given to non-first round selections. He was waived at the end of the preseason and signed to the practice squad, however, so when he returned to the active roster at midseason he agreed to a new two-year deal. He became an exclusive rights free agent in 2019 and signed the one-year tender offer he received. Moore played the 2020 season in Seattle on another one-year deal, then became an unrestricted free agent in 2021 and signed a two-year deal with the Carolina Panthers. When he ended up on the practice squad in Carolina, he was later signed off that crew to the Denver Broncos active roster on a one-year deal. Later that same season, he joined the Packers on another one-year contract. In 2022, Moore signed on with the Chicago Bears but he did not play that season.

Rank in Pro Football Focus Top 200 NFL Free Agents for 2023: Not ranked.

2023 Performance: As noted above, Moore spent the first 14 weeks of the 2023 season on the Buccaneers' practice squad, though he was given game day elevations at the end of the last three before joining the active roster in December. He then played 26% of the Bucs' offensive snaps over the following nine weeks, including the two playoff contests.

During the regular season, Moore caught five passes for 94 yards and a touchdown, averaging 18.8 yards per snag. His 52-yard catch-and-run against the Packers was the Buccaneers fifth-longest reception of the regular season. Moore also picked up a significant role on special teams when he started to be active on game days, contributing four kick-coverage stops.

In the playoffs, Moore added three more catches for 77 yards and another touchdown. His 44-yard score was the Bucs' second-longest catch and touchdown of the 2023 postseason and he played a season-high 32 offensive snaps in that win over Philadelphia.

Career Accomplishments: Moore only played sparingly as a rookie in 2017 but then became a regular part of the Seahawks' passing attack for the next three seasons, appearing in 46 games with 14 starts. He was on the field for roughly 45% of Seattle's offensive snaps in the games that he played, and over the course of those three seasons he caught 78 passes for 1,163 yards (14.9 avg.) and 13 touchdowns. He also ran 12 times for 91 yards as a Seahawks.

Moore's most productive campaigns came with Seattle in 2018 and 2020. He set a career high with 445 receiving yards in the former season and personal bests with 35 catches and six touchdowns in the latter. He also averaged 17.1 yards per grab in 2018 and 17.7 in 2019.

Moore did not catch any passes during his stints with Green Bay or Denver in 2022 but his totals with the Bucs last season improved his career marks to 83 catches for 1,257 yards and 14 touchdowns. He has also appeared in six postseason games, in which he caught six passes for 135 yards and a touchdown and ran twice for 10 yards.

Other Potential Free Agent Wide Receivers: Tee Higgins (Bengals), Michael Pittman (Colts), Marquise Brown (Cardinals), Calvin Ridley (Jaguars), Darnell Mooney (Bears), Gabe Davis (Bills), Odell Beckham Jr. (Ravens), Tyler Boyd (Bengals), Curtis Samuel (Commanders), Kendrick Bourne (Patriots), D.J. Chark (Panthers), Michael Thomas (Saints), Josh Reynolds (Lions)

Top Wide Receiver Prospects in 2024 NFL Draft: Marvin Harrison Jr. (Ohio State), Malik Nabers (LSU), Rome Odunze (Washington), Brian Thomas (LSU), Troy Franklin (Oregon), Ladd McConkey (Georgia), Tez Walker (North Carolina), Adonai Mitchell (Texas), Keon Coleman (Florida State), Xavier Worthy (Texas), Ja'Lynn Polk (Washington), Devontez Walker (North Carolina), Ricky Pearsall (Florida), Roman Wilson (Michigan), Xavier Legette (South Carolina)

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