We’re 68 days away from the Carolina Panthers 2021 season opener, so that means today’s countdown piece is devoted to No. 68 on the roster — guard David Moore.
The Panthers front office must have something for guys with first names that start with “D” and the last name “Moore”. The roster currently consists of guard David Moore (today’s profile), wide receiver David Moore, and wide receiver DJ Moore.
The “Moore” the merrier, I guess? (Yes, I’m a father of three in my mid-forties, so I was contractually obligated to insert a terrible dad joke here.)
With that lame attempt at humor out of the way, guard David Moore is one of five undrafted free agents the Panthers signed shortly after this year’s draft. The Panthers were fortunate to sign the 6-foot-3, 320-pound former Grambling State standout as many draft analysts projected him to be selected in the middle-to-late rounds, including a CBS mock draft that had him getting selected in the fourth round. He’s essentially a free 2021 late round draft pick masquerading as an undrafted free agent.
Training camp will be important for Moore because Grambling’s 2020 football season was cancelled due to the pandemic. He was invited to the 2020 Senior Bowl, however, and was coached by Matt Rhule, so Carolina’s staff has somewhat recently seen him in action. Rhule saw enough to bring Moore to Charlotte after no other team pulled the trigger on him in the draft.
There is a possibility the UDFA cracks the 53-man roster. While John Miller and Pat Elflein are the likely starters at guard, there isn’t a ton of depth behind them. Dennis Daley has seen action over the past two years but he’s not a difference maker. The Panthers invested a sixth round selection this year in Alabama guard Deonte Brown but he’s an unproven late-round pick who will basically enter camp on similar footing as Moore. Third round pick Brady Christensen could end up sliding from tackle in college to guard in the NFL. Mike Horton was a UDFA last season who bounced between the Panthers practice squad and the active roster, but never saw the field. The position battle for second and third string guard will be a competitive one, and David Moore will be right in the mix.
It wouldn’t be surprising to see David Moore hover somewhere between the practice squad and the fringe of the 53-man roster throughout his rookie campaign. He could very well end up being a diamond in the rough that other teams simply overlooked in the draft after he was out of sight, out of mind during the pandemic. This feels like a fantastic low-risk, high-reward proposition for the Panthers.
What will David Moore’s role be in 2021?
This poll is closed
Makes 53-man roster as a backup
Starts season on practice squad, makes the 53-man roster later in the season
Spends the season on the practice squad