The 2019 NFL Draft was a fruitful one for the Las Vegas Raiders. They got contributions from plenty of their selections and not just their first-round picks. One of those players that produced in his rookie season was tight end Foster Moreau.Â
Foster Moreau showed Las Vegas Raiders 4th-round choice was right
Even though the Raiders main tight end last season was Darren Waller, Moreau had very meaningful contributions. On 21 catches, he scored five touchdowns, which eclipsed Waller’s three. Moreover, he received a 70.8 Pro Football Focus overall grade and an 80.8 receiving one.
He could’ve contributed even more had he not suffered a season-ending injury in Week 14. He hurt his knee and an MRI later confirmed damage in his ligament. His numbers and his impact might’ve been bigger if he had played in the last three games of the year.
Heading into the season, it looks like Moreau has fully healed. Some weeks ago, Moreau and a contingent of Raiders players practiced at a local park in Las Vegas. The sophomore tight end looked strong and fast.
Some deep routes for your timeline @derekcarrqb @zayjones11 @fhmoreau #agholor #carrier pic.twitter.com/SfjtJyD4vR
— Hoku (@hokucurnan) July 7, 2020
Had Moreau not been ready to go in the season’s opener, veteran tight end Jason Witten might’ve had an expanded role. That’s not the case and the Raiders now have a tight end group full of talent in Waller, Witten, and Moreau.
The Raiders have a plethora of options to throw the ball to on offense, which means Moreau’s numbers may not increase much. Nevertheless, he will continue to be an important part of the team’s offense in 2020.
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Foster’s road back from recovery
Coming back from injuries isn’t fun, it carries plenty of tedious work, and that’s just the physical part. The mental aspect can be taxing too even if there aren’t any setbacks. However, Moreau not only got back, but he also did it before the season even began. In his latest press conference, he talked about many things that surrounded his recovery. He accepted it wasn’t easy, but acknowledged it was necessary if he wanted to heal.
“A lot of it was difficult, but it puts you in a difficult situation where the guidance isn’t really there every day. It’s not an everyday routine kind of thing routine. That’s what athletes and successful people thrive off, it’s being able to monitor and mirror their routine and kind of cater it to the things they need to do to be successful day in and day out. Through Covid, it was kind of difficult to be able to meet up with people and get back on the recovery track and do all the things that you wanted to do. [I] had to spend a lot of hours alone and doing it myself, self-monitoring, how my recovery is supposed to go. Right now, we’re feeling really great.”
Credit where credit is due
Moreau himself put lots of work into coming back from his knee injuries, but he received help along the way. The sophomore tight end made sure to thank all those people that chipped in his recovery and made it possible.
“There was a lot of work put into this. I can’t thank the training staff here enough, I can’t thank AJ Nibel and his staff enough and definitely the guys down at LSU that did my surgery. Mainly, Brent Bankston, who was the surgeon. Mainly, Jack Maruccif and his staff, day in day out type stuff with my guy Derek Calvert down there, who’s one of our physical therapists. It was tough but I feel great, I think I’m ready to go. I think it was in the summer when we were running routes over at the Olympia Sports Park. I think that’s when things started to come together.”
The Raiders’ tight end room looks deeper and stronger than it has in recent years. Moreau is one of the reasons why and he won’t let injuries get in his way to contribute in 2020.
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Top Photo: D. Ross Cameron/Associated Press