Kansas City Chiefs receiver Skyy Moore jumped four times after going out of bounds and gave the crowd a nod with her arm after an 18-yard reception against the Los Angeles Rams.
The extended celebration in this instance was understandable – especially considering what happened in the first quarter of Sunday’s 26-10 home win for KC.
“This was right after the falling bet, so I needed this,” Moore told The Star on Wednesday. “I was feeling it. I had to go back to my groove.
In this example, the rookie didn’t just force himself to catch a pass from quarterback Patrick Mahomes.
He did this – most importantly – by making an important in-game tweak that was necessary for his route to be fully unlocked.
The adaptation is Moore’s St. It goes back to his work at the training camp in Joseph. During those summer weeks, Moore sat in the row behind Mahomes during movie sessions and was able to tap his shoulder whenever he had questions about the games.
Moore’s offensive progress has rebounded with experience in just 11 regular season games.
“I don’t ask the same questions anymore,” Moore said. “‘Which route am I running or where am I lining up?’ … ‘How can I do?’ ‘What will I do?’ So the questions are now on the next level.”
And the answers are coming when they might not have come earlier this season.
This first quarter game shows some of that progress. Moore noticed Rams defender David Long Jr. crawling towards him before a sudden move, suggesting what would happen next.
Moore said he looked at the safety on his side of the court and saw him play deep. This – coupled with the upcoming corner – meant that the Rams’ field would play “cloud” coverage on their side.
And that also meant an opening for a shot in the middle area between cornering and safety.
“The more reps you get, the easier it gets,” Moore said. “It’s like ‘Oh, I’ve seen this before’.”
The engineered call caused Moore to run for a way out, just as his teammate Justin Watson was on the other end of the court.
But that wasn’t going to work against this defensive look from the Rams. So Moore made the necessary overhaul as he tried to position himself between the two Rams defenders, taking a faded course down the sideline, an area often referred to as the “hole shot”.
After passing Long, Moore felt the ball coming towards him.
“I really think I’ve progressed as much as I’ve been on the same page as Pat, just like in the receiving game,” Moore said. “And once you do that, everything starts to click as it seems.”
The 18-yard reception was just the beginning of a productive day for Moore. The second-round pick (54th overall) ended with five catches for 36 yards, making him the second-highest ranked player in the Chiefs offense according to Pro Football Focus, beating only center Creed Humphrey.
Moore’s PFF overall rating of 74.6 for the season ranks fourth among rookie buyers with at least 23 goals. The three wide players ahead of him – Chris Olave, Garrett Wilson and Drake London – were all in the top 11 in the April audition.
Mahomes said he didn’t necessarily look to Moore’s path to help him regain his trust, but instead found it as part of his normal progression. The quarterback also liked that his teammates focused on looking forward after Moore’s first mistake.
“We know the guys here are racing. They’re doing their best to put everything in order. And if something goes wrong, we know the next time you get an opportunity, you’re going to make a play,” said Mahomes. “That’s what great teams do and that’s what great players do.”
Moore admitted that the catch “feels good for me” after his gambling comeback blunder.
But even more important was making sure that the quarterback and his team were where they needed him.
“When you’re on the same page,” Moore said, “the offense works great.”