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Dallas Cowboys Must Start Kellen Moore

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Dallas Cowboys Must Start Kellen Moore

With three games remaining, and the Cowboys at 4-9, my optimism for 2015 is all but gone. Disappointing, gut-wrenching and unfathomable are all words I would use to describe the turn of events this season.

I joined the Inside the Star family this summer with one goal in mind – writing about the Dallas Cowboys as Super Bowl Champions. Now, my attention shifts to how to make the lifelong dream possible next season.

This process must begin with the quarterback position as Kellen Moore needs to come in for the veteran Matt Cassel. We all know exactly what the Cowboys have in the veteran Cassel, and it’s not pretty.

Cowboys Nation on Twitter

Matt Cassel threw 0 completed passes that traveled 10 yards in the air over the first 55:28 of the game today.

Kellen Moore represents more than just the white flag for 2015. He represents a potential answer to some of the most critical questions the Cowboys will have this offseason before the draft.

1. Is Kellen Moore a viable backup QB?

With a short week to prepare for the Jets, and a road game in Buffalo on tap for week 16, the Cowboys should be able to get a decent showing one way or another from Moore. While entirely evaluating him off of three games would be unfair, his performance could make the difference between drafting a signal-caller in the first round or trusting him enough to let him compete with a lower round pick.

2. Will Kellen Moore save Scott Linehan?

While I find this entire topic absurd, and hope that Linehan is back next season regardless of the outcome for the remainder of 2015, a transition in quarterbacks could certainly save him. Linehan was with Kellen Moore in Detroit, so the two have a chance to put something together and prove to Jerry Jones and the Cowboys that Linehan should return and Moore can be here to stay.

✭ Sean Martin ✭ on Twitter

Should Kellen Moore start for @CowboysNation on Saturday against the #Jets?

3. Can Moore play with more confidence than Cassel?

As referenced in the tweet above, perhaps the most frustrating part about Cassel’s play is his unwillingness to try to hit on big plays down the field. Given the chance, would Kellen Moore attempt to open things up and finally get Dez Bryant involved this season?

 4. Is Kellen Moore a trade option?

Let’s say Moore starts against the Jets and throws four touchdowns, only to regress to what the Cowboys thing they actually have in him at Buffalo and against Washington.

In this scenario, we have seen teams before throw out everything they know about evaluating players and go after a QB based on one game tape. Perhaps a team would do the same for Moore, giving the Cowboys a valuable piece in return.

Some potential trade returns may include a different backup QB that the Cowboys rank ahead of Moore, or a running back that shows potential.

These four questions are very important for the Dallas Cowboys moving forward, and can all be answered by making a simple quarterback switch away from a hopeless veteran in Matt Cassel to a young and potentially exciting Kellen Moore.

So, I ask you now, is Moore the guy the rest of the way? Let me know with a comment below, or find me on Twitter @ShoreSportsNJ! You can also follow ITS on Instagram at insidethestardc!

Tell us what you think about “Dallas Cowboys Must Start Kellen Moore” in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @ShoreSportsNJ!

Sean Martin

Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Pleasant NJ, no we're not how you think we are. Host of "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and wmscradio.com every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. Also available through iHeart radio! Keep up with the show on Twitter @UFRWMSC!

18 Comments
  • larry faught

    Anyone is better than cassel

  • George Johnson

    I am a big K Moore fan and have followed him his whole career. I would like to see K Moore play but for none of the reasons you mentioned. I think he needs to play after three plus years in the NFL for his development and to get some experience. I don't expect him to be substantially better than Cassel and Weeden in his first few games as I assume he will go through a learning curve and will possibly make some rookie mistakes. He will likely do okay to well though as he is a master at pocket passing and makes good decisions and minimizes mistakes. He may never play in the NFL because of his physical limitations; small size, lack of athleticism and lack of a strong arm. He needs to get an opportunity however to demonstrate he can overcome or compensate for his weaknesses with his outstanding pocket passing abilities and instinctive play. He may never get the opportunity because he doesn't look like an NFL QB and has zero NFL experience.

  • Dave Dash

    I feel there is a conspiracy against Kellen Moore, because I figure maybe Romo doesn't want Moore to come in and play well and do like he did to Bledsoe years ago… just my opinion.

    • George Johnson

      I disagree. I also wouldn't expect K Moore to play real well in his first couple of games especially against good defenses. Another conspiracy I have read is that Garrett doesn't want K Moore to come in and do well because everyone will say why didn't Garrett start Moore earlier before Dallas lost so many games that they are out of the playoffs.

  • Ronald Dulaney

    After the Cowboys are behind the Jets by 20 points at halftime, they should bring in Kellen Moore for the second half – that Cassel never shows up for, as we've all witnessed over and over. But only if they let him audible at the line because one of his greatest intangibles is his ability to read defenses and their ploys before the snap. He must also be allowed to improvise AFTER the snap because, first, his incredible feel for pocket flow and where the passing lanes will emerge (why this short kid had so few batted passes – and sacks). And secondly, his apparently innate ability to discern the flow of the players, offensive AND defensive, and where the pass needs to be "placed" so only his receiver can reach it ( why he had so few interceptions). Because of the regemented or formatted nature of practice sessions, these intangibles are rarely, if ever, observed. That's why it's been said that Kellen Moore plays better than he practices. When allowed to exercise these intangible assets he tends to thrive, as when Scott Linehan gave him free reign when the Lions played the Patriots in the 2013 preseason. Because Shaun Hill was beat up, Kellen subbed for him and played against the Pats' first and second team defenses (per Greg Bedard of Sports Illustrated). He started in the second quarter and led 4 scoring drives with two touchdown passes, no interceptions, no sacks or fumbles or batted passes, ending with a 156 QBR. It might be nice to see him start against the Buffalo Bills because he owned them the last four preseason games and he outdueled Tyrod Taylor in Virginia against Taylor's Hokies!

  • Doug

    I'll step out and say you're all wrong. Not only will Kellen step out and be the real deal game #1 but he'll continue winning games every time he plays. I watched him step out onto Autzen Stadium his second game in college football as a freshman. I was sure we were going to be crushed by the Ducks but Kellen proved us all wrong then and he'll prove everyone wrong again. I get that he doesn't look the part but he will make Dallas proud. Let Kellen show Dallas what he can do – it would be a blast to watch…..

  • http://PigskinHub.com Zac Fields

    I'll never understand the cult following that Kellen Moore has.

    There are no conspiracies here. The Cowboys have taken the approach every other team has taken toward the quarterback position when their incumbent starter has been injured.

    Look at Ryan Fitzpatrick of the Jets.
    Matt Hasselbeck of the Colts.
    Michael Vick of the Steelers
    Blaine Gabbert of the 49ers
    Josh McCown of the Browns
    Case Keenum of the Rams

    All players with tangible NFL experience. There are no Kellen Moores in this list. The backup quarterbacks starting in the NFL today are all either vested veterans or drafted heir-apparent players. As far as I know, there have been no undrafted quarterbacks who have never played an NFL snap starting for any NFL team this season.

    With all that said, I want Kellen Moore to start, too, because I think it's time we see what he's got. It's the whole "nothing to lose" argument and Moore does give us at least a sliver of reason to believe he might be good since he was extremely good in college. While success in college often doesn't translate to the NFL, at least we have a foundation for an excuse to give him a shot.

    But there are no conspiracies and no, Garrett/Jerry and company are not stupid for not having already started Moore several weeks ago. Even if he plays the final 2 games and performs well, Weeden and Cassel were still the right guys to have started for the Dallas Cowboys when they were still in playoff contention.

    • http://Google%20+ Ronald Dulaney

      @Zac Fields, Weeden and Cassel, judging from their play, obviously weren't the "right guys" to start for the Cowboys. They were the conventional wisdom guys, the common sense guys, "the usual suspects" guys, the safe choice guys, the " nobody can call me stupid if I choose these" guys – maybe. But obviously not the "right guys".

    • http://Google%20+ Ronald Dulaney

      @Zac Fields, Weeden and Cassel, judging from their play, obviously weren't the "right guys" to start for the Cowboys. They were the conventional wisdom guys, the common sense guys, "the usual suspects" guys, the safe choice guys, the " nobody can call me stupid if I choose these" guys – maybe. But obviously not the "right guys".

    • George Johnson

      I am a big K Moore fan and have followed him his whole career and read everything said about him. Let me rebut some of what you said. 1) Yes, K Moore was not drafted. However, every one of those experts would have to admit now after what K Moore has done so far in the NFL, that he should have been drafted in the later rounds. 2) K Moore has never played in the NFL. However, every QB at some point has not played in the NFL. Someone has to give them an opportunity to play even though they have no experience and the coach wants to win the game, not break in a new rookie QB. Hopefully K Moore will get this opportunity at some point. , 3) K Moore was not drafted because he is too small, not athletic and does not have a strong arm. Many said they questioned whether K Moore could even play in the NFL. However, these so called experts were putting too much weight on what they can see and measure which are mainly his physical attributes or should I say lack there of. What they can't see and measure are his cerebral or mental abilities to play QB. He is outstanding at these and plays instinctively. He may be one of the best ever at a combination of accuracy, anticipation and mental abilities. His college coach, Peterson, said , "HE IS THE BEST POCKET PASSER HE HAS EVER SEEN" Pretty strong statement for a respected coach who is not known to be outspoken. I believe he developed these capabilities from studying, practicing and playing QB since he could walk because he was relentless at it and his dad was a coach so he was in a constant football environment. 4) K Moore has been underestimated at all levels. The major colleges were not interested in coming out of high school just like the NFL was not interested coming out of college. He has always proved everyone wrong and plays way better than anyone thinks he can play. Besides his poise and instinctive abilities to play, he is extremely consistent. One of the reasons he was 50-3 in college and could have easily been 52-1 was his consistency. He can't make all the throws in the NFL playbook because of not having a strong arm but his throws will generally be accurate, good anticipation, good touch, to the right receiver, quick release, and not be intercepted. He will do this consistently over and over again.

  • http://wmscradio.com/show/upon-further-review/ Sean Martin
    InsideTheStar.com User

    I feel there is a conspiracy against Kellen Moore, because I figure maybe Romo doesn't want Moore to come in and play well and do like he did to Bledsoe years ago… just my opinion.

    I think Romo is clearly safe to start when he's once again ready to go, and even would likely prefer to see Moore succeed. Look back at the sideline during the seven-game losing streak, Romo the most hurt most of the time.

  • http://PigskinHub.com Zac Fields

    I've shared this sentiment with @Jess Haynie multiple times in the past, but I believe the Cowboys have always preferred to have "Romo-friendly" backup quarterbacks. They have always preferred to have veteran backups that were absolutely no threat in the event that Romo struggled (which he has done at random point sin his career) or got injured.

    I'm not faulting the Cowboys for going that route, but to me that's the reality of it. Look at their acquisition of Brandon Weeden. There was a younger, more successful former Browns quarterback available by the name of Colt McCoy, but McCoy was a huge name in Texas from his college days and was young enough that if Romo struggled you'd start to see fans wanting to see what McCoy could do. It may only be 10% of fans clamoring for it, but that kind of stuff can really mess with a quarterback's psyche.

    Same goes for Blaine Gabbert. The 49ers acquired Gabbert last year in a trade for nothing more than a 6th round pick. Another guy younger than Weeden who was a top draft pick just three years prior, and played for a crappy team in Jacksonville which gives some hope that he can be rehabilitated in a better system.

    It's working out great for the 49ers. And the Redskins got some good games out of McCoy last year. I just believe the Cowboys have always avoided putting guys behind Romo that might have long-term potential. They rarely draft quarterbacks, and the one time they acquire a recent 1st round draft pick, it's a 32 year old nearly as over-the-hill as the quarterback he is backing up.

    To me, just having Kellen Moore on the team indicates a slight deviation from that philosophy. We'll get to see Moore at some point this season — perhaps as soon as next week.

  • http://PigskinHub.com Zac Fields

    David Moore of DMN hit the nail on the head for me, pertaining to Kellen Moore:

    David Moore – DMN

    Let's say Moore plays the final two games? Let's say he plays lights out? Does that diminish the need for the Cowboys to draft a young quarterback to develop for the future?

    Not at all.

    Kellen Moore is a curiosity. He's someone who can help pass the time at the end of a dreadful season.

    He's not the future.

    That's my take on it. I think they should start Moore as soon as next week. I wish they'd have started him this week, but it's just a curiosity for me. Nothing he could do on the field changes my view that the Cowboys must consider drafting a quarterback in the top 2 rounds in April.

    • Ronald Dulaney

      @Zac Fields So you and David Moore see Kellen Moore as nothing more than a "curiosity". And NOTHING he could do on the field – even playing "Lights Out" – could change your mind about drafting a QB in the top 2 rounds? Then I'd say YOU TWO are the CURIOSITIES. ( and how's that working for you?) Regarding your Romo Coddling Conspiracy Theory? Please!!

    • http://Google%20+ Ronald Dulaney

      @Zac Fields So you and David Moore see Kellen Moore as nothing more than a "curiosity". And NOTHING he could do on the field – even playing "Lights Out" – could change your mind about drafting a QB in the top 2 rounds? Then I'd say YOU TWO are the CURIOSITIES. ( and how's that working for you?) Regarding your Romo Coddling Conspiracy Theory? Please!!

  • http://www.pigskinhub.com/forum/index.php?forums/dallas-cowboys/ Jess Haynie

    Pigskin ZacI've shared this sentiment with @Jess Haynie multiple times in the past, but I believe the Cowboys have always preferred to have "Romo-friendly" backup quarterbacks. They have always preferred to have veteran backups that were absolutely no threat in the event that Romo struggled (which he has done at random point sin his career) or got injured.

    And, as I've said every time you make this argument, I think you're taking the facts and making one of a few possible interpretations. I think Jason Garrett and Wade Wilson, because of their playing history, have a bias towards experienced backup QBs and prefer older veterans over younger guys.

    Saying they're worried about messing with Romo's confidence is, frankly, an insult to Tony. I think he's proven to have way more guts and moxie than that and that it wouldn't be a factor. Romo was himself a backup who ended up taking somebody's job based on performance. He gets it.

    We keep decrying the Cowboys for taking young tight ends and sticking them behind Jason Witten, only to watch them leave and end up becoming solid players elsewhere. Why would that be okay at QB, where the backup has way less chance of ever making a contribution during their time here, but not other positions? Seems like everyone wants to have it both ways. When a guy is an iron man like Witten, the team gets criticized for wasting picks on reserves. When Romo misses significant time, the team gets criticized for not putting more into the depth chart.

  • http://www.pigskinhub.com/forum/index.php?forums/dallas-cowboys/ Jess Haynie

    That said, I'm all for playing Kellen Moore. What is there to lose? Still competing for the playoffs is a total joke now and almost mathematically impossible because of the Giants/Eagles game Week 17. They would both have to lose two straight leading to that game, and Dallas would have to win three in a row, for there to even be a chance. NOT HAPPENING.

  • http://PigskinHub.com Zac Fields

    Jess HaynieWe keep decrying the Cowboys for taking young tight ends and sticking them behind Jason Witten, only to watch them leave and end up becoming solid players elsewhere. Why would that be okay at QB, where the backup has way less chance of ever making a contribution during their time here, but not other positions?

    The problem with that logic is that a backup quarterback who does get time and thrives becomes a highly-valuable commodity that can be traded. A 1st or 2nd round tight end playing behind the never-injured Jason Witten will almost never end up yielding any value.

    Look at what the Patriots did with Matt Cassel to understand why the Cowboys are foolish for only making one half-hearted attempt at developing a drafted quarterback in the last decade. Back in 2008 when Tony Romo was out most of the season, isn't it a shame that the quarterback who played pretty damn good in his absence was Jon Kitna? What if we had drafted a Kevin Kolb (who, coincidentally yielded a king's ransom for the Eagles in a trade) or even a Chad Henne? What if one of those guys could have led the Cowboys to a .500 record and had an 85.0 quarterback rating? Could we have been the one to acquire Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a 2nd round pick in a trade?

    I view quarterbacks as valuable commodities. If you draft and develop them, they could be the heir-apparent or you could at least recoup some value in a trade. That's not true of almost any other position behind a strong incumbent starter.

    InsideTheStar.com User@Zac Fields So you and David Moore see Kellen Moore as nothing more than a "curiosity". And NOTHING he could do on the field – even playing "Lights Out" – could change your mind about drafting a QB in the top 2 rounds? Then I'd say YOU TWO are the CURIOSITIES. ( and how's that working for you?) Regarding your Romo Coddling Conspiracy Theory? Please!!

    You have heard the term "Romo-Friendly" before I said it, right? I hope so.

    Like I said, I'm not necessarily faulting the Cowboys for never putting a viable backup quarterback behind Romo — I'm just stating a fact. It's hard to argue that the Cowboys have clearly demonstrated a preference for washed-up quarterbacks in their mid-30's behind Romo. I think the Cowboys are aware that a young drafted quarterback is a valuable commodity that can be developed and traded if need-be, but what they are also aware of is the fickle nature of NFL team fans and aware of the very real issue a quarterback controversy causes.

    I feel like these are all simple concepts, though. Teams try to avoid quarterback controversies, which is an even bigger deal when you're talking a franchise like the Cowboys that deals with a higher level of drama than normal simply because of who they are.

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