2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Moore, Broncos put his big blunder behind them

By ARNIE STAPLETON - AP Pro Football Writer
    2013-05-19 09:52

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) - The Denver Broncos have moved on, even if their fans haven't.

That includes Rahim Moore, the safety whose big blunder led to Denver's heart-wrenching loss in the playoffs four months ago.

The Broncos gather Monday for their first full practice since that fateful, frigid night in Denver when Moore allowed Jacoby Jones' 70-yard touchdown catch from Joe Flacco in the final minute of regulation in the divisional game the Baltimore Ravens won in double overtime on their way to winning the Super Bowl.

Although there was plenty of blame to go around, Moore took the brunt of public criticism along with coach John Fox for his decision to have Peyton Manning take a knee afterward and take his chances in overtime.

Many fans wondered if Moore could ever play in Denver again after his gaffe, akin to Bill Buckner's ball-through-the-legs moment in the 1986 World Series between the Boston Red Sox and the New York Mets.

The Broncos, however, are sticking with the third-year pro who remains the starter at free safety.

``I think he's over it; I think we're all over it, you know,'' Denver defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio told The Associated Press. ``I think we all look back and see things that we could have done better. We also look back with a great deal of pride in what we accomplished. We played some very good defense and he was central to that. So, we want to feel good about what went well. We want to feel the sting of what went bad. And we want to get ready to be better this year.''

The Broncos' stars all stumbled in that 38-35 double-overtime loss to the Ravens: Manning had three turnovers, including an interception that led to the winning field goal; Champ Bailey got burned repeatedly; Ryan Clady was playing with a torn rotator cuff that would require surgery and wasn't anything close to his usual dominant self as Manning's blindside protector; and Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil combined for just one sack.

All those poor performances were overshadowed, however, by the many mystifying mistakes that Moore, their second-year free safety, made on Jones' 70-yard touchdown catch from Flacco with 31 seconds left in the fourth quarter.

Moore lined up too shallow and allowed Jones to blow past him after leaving cornerback Tony Carter, who failed to jam at the line of scrimmage, in his wake. Then, instead of going for the tackle, Moore tried for the interception on Flacco's 50-yard high-arcing heave but mistimed his jump and fell down, which prevented Carter from catching Moore as he pranced his way into the end zone.

Moore took the blame after the game and promised to make good, saying, ``I'm going to keep my head high and next time the opportunity comes, I'm just going to make it for my team. I'll just make the play.''

Moore is sure to face heightened scrutiny from fans this year and how he handles the pressure will go a long way in determining if he recovers from the big blunder to have a good year in 2013.

``I feel like that's the way with the rest of us, he's no different. It may be more publicized, there may be more people interested in it,'' Del Rio said. ``In terms of us internally here, we all feel like there's things we can do better and we're all looking to grow. I put him in the same category. I think he had a really solid year last year after a disappointing first year and he should be able to build on that and be better this year.''

Providing he can get over it, of course.

``Rahim's focus is on getting better from a year ago,'' Fox said. ``And there wasn't one play. It was a whole season. He made great, great progress a year ago from his rookie year and we anticipate him to do that again. He's a very talented young man.''

Moore hasn't addressed the media en masse yet. That should come Monday when reporters get the chance to view the first day of the Broncos' OTAs in its entirety. The team has denied requests for 1-on-1 interviews except for one he gave The Denver Post recently in which Moore said he went right back to work in a matter of days after his massive mistake.

``Yeah, sometimes hard work is the best tonic when you feel the sting of something,'' Del Rio said.

Moore has the support of everybody at team headquarters, from Bailey to executive vice president John Elway, who was asked during a recent conference call with season-ticket holders why he didn't address safety in the offseason.

``Obviously, what's stuck in peoples' minds about Rahim'' was the playoff foul-up, ``but he made tremendous strides from Year 1 to Year 2,'' Elway said. ``And I think hopefully he makes those same strides. He really had a good year last year and we want to watch him to continue to grow. Safety-wise, we feel pretty good.''

Bailey said Moore's mental state has been right ever since players first gathered for offseason work this spring.

``Let's go try again, that's pretty much his mentality,'' Bailey said. ``I don't think it affected him as much as people think. He got so much better last year. I can't believe he's not going to improve this year. People want to talk about one play. But you can't decide about someone on one play.''

Miller said nobody in the locker room holds Moore any more accountable for the playoff loss than they do themselves.

``Rahim made a few key tackles that day. He was all over the place. It was just a football folly,'' Miller said. ``I don't blame Rahim. I blame me and Elvis: 70 yards to go, we know they're going to pass the ball. That's why they bring me and Elvis to close the game out and neither of us got to the quarterback. I took it hard.''

Dumervil signed with the Ravens in an ironic offseason twist, and he'll make a return with his new teammates when the Super Bowl champs open the season at Denver on Sept. 5.

``This is a new season. We've moved on. The whole league has moved one,'' Fox said. ``Everybody is 0-0 right now. So, what you did last year doesn't mean anything, good or bad. It's what you do this year.''

----

AP Pro Football Writer Arnie Stapleton can be reached at astapleton(at)ap.org or follow him at http://twitter.com/arniestapleton

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Matt JonesMay 20 02:15p

Washington Redskins RB Matt Jones said that he loves the offense and has a chip on his shoulder after not being used properly while in college. 'My college career [ More ]

Derek CarrMay 20 08:53a

Updating a previous report, Oakland Raiders QB Derek Carr (finger) is experiencing numbness in his right ring finger. He hopes to avoid surgery through rest and rehab, and no [ More ]

Derek CarrMay 19 06:13p

Oakland Raiders QB Derek Carr (finger) has a right ring finger injury that could be surgically repaired. A return for training camp is still achievable, however, according to a source.

L. WashingtonMay 19 05:23p

Pittsburgh Steelers WR L'Damian Washington (undisclosed) was waived/injured Tuesday, May 19.

Shayne GrahamMay 19 03:03p

New Orleans Saints PK Shayne Graham was released Tuesday, May 19. Subsequently, free-agent WR Lance Lewis (49ers) was signed.

Joseph BarksdaleMay 19 02:23p

Free-agent OT Joseph Barksdale (Rams) will sign a one-year deal worth $350,000 with the San Diego Chargers, according to a source. The deal also comes with more than $1 million in incentives available.

Tom BradyMay 19 01:43p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady will continue to appeal his four-game suspension, despite owner Robert Kraft saying the team will not appeal the discipline levied against them.

Jed CollinsMay 18 03:32p

Dallas Cowboys FB Jed Collins was released Monday, May 18, and FB Tyler Clutts was re-signed to an undisclosed contract.

Tyler CluttsMay 18 03:32p

Dallas Cowboys FB Jed Collins was released Monday, May 18, and FB Tyler Clutts was re-signed to an undisclosed contract.

Lache SeastrunkMay 18 02:42p

Tennessee Titans RB Lache Seastrunk was released Monday, May 18.

Jimmy GaroppoloMay 17 08:42p

New England Patriots QB Jimmy Garoppolo's quick decision making and accuracy fit well with New England's playbook that includes quick-rhythm passes as part of the foundation, and Bucky Brooks [ More ]

Zach HockerMay 17 04:42p

The New Orleans Saints have signed free-agent PK Zach Hocker (Dolphins).

Joseph RandleMay 16 07:32p

Dallas Cowboys RB Joseph Randle has the skills to lead the team's backfield in 2015 but he'll need to work on his off-field issues, according to Jon Machota of [ More ]

Matt CasselMay 15 07:52p

Buffalo Bills QB Matt Cassel is likely to enter Week 1 of the season as the team's backup quarterback, in the opinion of The Buffalo News' Vic Carucci. He [ More ]

Santana MossMay 15 07:12p

Free-agent WR Santana Moss (Redskins) is not ready to hang up his cleats and retire this offseason. 'I'm a free agent right now, you know how they do [ More ]

Robert TurbinMay 14 05:32p

Seattle Seahawks RB Robert Turbin (hip) underwent hip surgery this offseason, according to sources. No timetable was disclosed for his recovery.

Tom BradyMay 14 03:52p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady has officially appealed his four-game suspension.

Greg SalasMay 13 02:23p

Free-agent WR Greg Salas (Jets) signed a one-year deal with the Detroit Lions Wednesday, May 13. Financial terms were not disclosed.

John ConnerMay 13 12:03p

Free-agent FB John Conner (Jets) signed with the Buffalo Bills Wednesday, May 13. FB Corey Knox was waived to make room for him.

Tom BradyMay 13 10:03a

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady's four-game suspension could be reduced significantly, and possibly overturned, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter. Brady has put together a renowned legal team to appeal his suspension.

D.J. SwearingerMay 12 05:22p

Free-agent SS D.J. Swearinger was officially claimed by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tuesday, May 12.

Fred JacksonMay 12 03:13p

Buffalo Bills RB Fred Jackson may not make the final roster if the Bills end up keeping only three running backs, according to Mike Rodak of ESPN.com. RB LeSean [ More ]

Lance MooreMay 12 01:23p

Free-agent WR Lance Moore (Steelers) signed a one-year deal with the Detroit Lions.

Justin BlackmonMay 12 11:02a

Jacksonville Jaguars WR Justin Blackmon was denied reinstatement by the NFL this offseason, according to The Associated Press' Mark Long. It's unclear whether Blackmon failed a drug test or [ More ]

Joseph RandleMay 12 10:42a

Dallas Cowboys RB Joseph Randle could see the bulk of the carries as the season weighs on, in the opinion of beat writer Todd Archer. Archer pegged Randle for [ More ]

Jimmy GaroppoloMay 11 09:42p

New England Patriots QB Jimmy Garoppolo is expected to start while QB Tom Brady serves his suspension for 'DeflateGate'. Brady was suspended four games by the National Football League [ More ]

Tom BradyMay 11 07:12p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady will appeal his four-game suspension, according to his agent.

Tom BradyMay 11 05:52p

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady has been suspended four games for his involvement in the deflated-football incident in the AFC Championship. In addition, the Patriots will lose their [ More ]

D.J. SwearingerMay 11 04:12p

Houston Texans SS D.J. Swearinger was officially released Monday, May 11.

Carey SpearMay 11 01:22p

Cleveland Browns PKs Travis Coons and Carey Spear will compete for the kicker job this offseason, and the competition is wide open at this point, according to special teams coordinator Chris Tabor.

Garrett HartleyMay 11 01:12p

Cleveland Browns PK Garrett Hartley was released Monday, May 11.

Kyle ArringtonMay 11 10:32a

New England Patriots CB Kyle Arrington was released Monday, May 11, according to a source. The team left the door open for him to return.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group