The Bengals this afternoon signed unrestricted free agent wide receiver Denarius Moore, who spent his previous four NFL seasons with Oakland. Moore visited with the Bengals on Thursday after visiting with the Jets the previous week.
Moore, with the Raiders from 2011-14, will be a fifth-year NFL player in 2015. At 6 feet, 190 pounds, Moore isn't big, but he's fast, and that's what the Bengals need -- a burner with blazing speed who can stretch the field and open up the vertical passing game.
Moore, a fifth-round Al Davis pick in 2011 out of Tennessee, agreed to terms today on a one-year contract. It's believed that Moore signed for around the NFL minimum salary. The deal reunites Moore with Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson, who was Moore's rookie-year head coach in Oakland.
Under Jackson, Moore had his best season, and looked to be a difference maker in 2012 when he started 15 games and caught 51 passes for 741 yards (14.5 average) with seven touchdowns. That followed up a very successful rookie season when Moore had 33 catches for 618 yards, for a whopping 18.7-yard average, with five touchdowns.
In 2013, Moore played 13 games with 10 starts and caught 46 passes for 695 yards (15.1 average) with five touchdowns.
His production fell off last year as Oakland had problems at quarterback, and he appeared in fewer games. Moore played in 10 games with two starts in 2014, catching 12 passes for 115 yards.
In 51 career games with 37 starts in Oakland, Moore totaled 142 receptions for 2,169 yards (15.3 average) with 17 touchdowns. He also has 42 career punt returns for a 6.8-yard average.
Moore has the physical tools to be a downfield playmaker in Cincinnati, but inconsistent play, work ethic issues and injuries have held him back since 2013. He played on just 237 snaps last season.
With his speed -- he was a Tatum High School state track and field champion in Texas -- Moore fulfills the primary Bengals need of a deep receiving threat.
He apparently won't be reuniting with the quarterback who helped him get off to a fast start in his NFL career.
In just his second NFL game, Moore made a name for himself against Buffalo Week 2 in 2011 by coming down with spectacular catches en route to 146 yards receiving. He had five catches that day with a 50-yard touchdown on a pass from quarterback Jason Campbell, whom the Bengals did not re-sign following a one-year stay in Cincinnati. Moore also had a 25-yard rush in his breakout game.
That earned him the Week 2 Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Week award, an honor he also won Week 10 that season.