Thaddeus Moss caught 47 passes for 570 yards and four touchdowns last year in college at LSU, including two TD catches in the national championship game.
In total the Redskins tight ends registered 44 catches for 367 yards and three touchdowns. That counts all Redskins tight ends that made a catch last year, all of them, in all 16 games the team played. Moss' numbers came in just 12 games.
Yes, Moss went undrafted, but at the same time, it does seem possible Moss can take over the Redskins tight end job in 2020. The team struggled mightily at the position in 2019, and while Washington added Logan Thomas and Richard Rodgers in free agency, neither player made a significant offensive impact in 2019. Thomas made 16 catches last year in 16 games, and Rodgers has one catch in the last two seasons.
After releasing Jordan Reed and Vernon Davis' retirement, the Redskins knew they had a big hole at tight end going into free agency and the draft. And between Rodgers, Thomas and Moss, it's debatable if Ron Rivera and the new Washington braintrust did enough to address the problem.
Could Moss bail Rivera and Redskins personnel boss Kyle Smith out? Maybe.
He has soft hands and plays with a toughness at the line of scrimmage. He's also coming off a foot injury and no other NFL team drafted him. Moss is hardly a sure thing, and in a mature interview, he understands his road ahead as an undrafted player.
"I definitely felt like it was a slap in the face not getting drafted, having picked kickers and punters, and special teams. Just seeing guys getting picked over me, I definitely felt a type of way about it. But, it’s no difference. I’ve always had to prove myself my whole life," Moss said after joining the Redskins.
At some point it's worth pointing out that Thaddeus Moss has a very famous father, Hall of Fame wide receiver Randy Moss. At some point it's also worth pointing out that will not impact Thaddeus' play for the Redskins in 2020 or any point beyond.
"The last name Moss, people have always had their eyes on me and always doubted me and always wanted to see what I can do, and always had expectations. This is no different. Being an undrafted free agent, I don’t really have a lot of expectations, so going in there and playing football."
Beyond Moss, Rodgers and Thomas, the Redskins also have Jeremy Sprinkle and Hale Hentges returning to the roster. Of the five players, it seems likely Washington will only keep three tight ends.
Thomas is slated to make the most money and the Redskins targeted him in free agency. He seems close to a lock for the final roster. After that, who knows.
Sprinkle has been on the team for three seasons, but going into the final year of his rookie contract, he's hardly a sure thing, especially because he wasn't drafted by Rivera. Hentges is cheap, Rodgers is too, but Hentges is young and durable while Rodgers is going into his seventh NFL season and hasn't played a full 16-game season since 2016.
On any NFL roster, it's hard to project an undrafted rookie for a starting spot. On this Redskins team, however, Thaddeus Moss has a real opportunity not just for a roster spot, but for serious playing time.
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