For The Record - OL Jaylon Moore

Justin Wong
May 19, 2021 at 6:27 PM2

While NFL Draft pundits and fans alike can give instant reactions to their team's player selections, it's easy to forget that the true value of the picks cannot be fully assessed until after a couple of seasons. Some players become instant starters (Nick Bosa), while others remain works in progress (Javon Kinlaw). Having said that, I want to pull out the receipts on what draft analysts were saying prior to the draft, along with their player comparisons. With the 2021 NFL Draft now in the books, let's review what various scouting outlets were saying about the 49ers' draft picks in this mini-series, "For The Record". The San Francisco 49ers had three draft picks in the fifth round and used their first one to nab Western Michigan offensive linemen, Jaylon Moore, with the 155th pick.

NFL Player Comparison: Bobby Evans

Dane Brugler of The Athletic sums up Moore as an ideal fit in the 49ers' zone run scheme "executing stretch runs and picking off linebackers at the second level" in his 2021 NFL Draft Guide:

Moore displays coordinated movement patterns in pass protection, staying wide and working hard to keep his blocks centered. He won't be a great fit for every scheme, but he is efficient on the move, executing stretch runs and picking off linebackers at the second level. Overall, Moore doesn't play with the power to consistently move defenders off the ball, but he plays with the balance and poise to push for NFL starting reps. He would best fit in a zone-based NFL offense.

NFL Analyst Lance Zierlein sees Thomas "at his best when he's allowed to play on the move"

Athletic tackle/guard prospect who is at his best when he's allowed to play on the move and utilize his athletic ability to create angle advantages in space. He's fluid and consistent on play-side climb-ups to seal the linebacker and has the potential to help create back-side tracks for one-cut runners. He has huge hands and adequate length but needs to win early with those hands or he can be overtaken by stronger defenders. If Moore can eliminate his leaning, he has the technique and traits to be competitive as a blocker. He might need to prove he can offer tackle/guard roster flexibility in order to garner and maintain a backup role.

ESPN Scout Inc.'s draft grade of Moore gave him a 62 grade as a "better fit on the inside."

Moore flashes the ability to generate push in the run game and has the tools to develop into an effective zone-blocker at the NFL level. He leans and falls off some blocks. He takes some false steps. He's quick, he has above-average balance, and he moves well in pass pro. He has the ability to recover, but his footwork is inconsistent. He doesn't have ideal length for a tackle and overextends at times. He may be a better fit on the inside.

Pro Football Focus thinks Moore has "people-moving strength" but said it was disappointed with his actual production during its live analysis of the 2021 NFL Draft:

Moore played left tackle at Western Michigan, but he could kick inside to guard with the 49ers, who drafted Notre Dame's Aaron Banks at that position on Day 2. Moore has people-moving strength and impressive physical tools. That never translated to high-end production in the MAC, though. The 2020 season marked the first time in his college career where he earned a PFF grade higher than 75.0.

Similar to former 49ers tackle Joe Staley, Moore was originally recruited as a two-star tight end before converting in college to defensive end and later offensive tackle, where his mobility served him well at Western Michigan. Western Michigan has actually been a surprising powerhouse for NFL linemen with Chukwuma Okorafor (Pittsburgh Steelers), Taylor Moton (Carolina Panthers), and Luke Juriga (Philadelphia Eagles) all hailing from the same college in recent years, which bodes well for Moore's chances of contributing in the NFL.

While second-round pick Aaron Banks is known more as a bruising offensive lineman at 6'5" and 338 lbs., Moore fits the typical mold as a zone-blocking offensive lineman at 6'4" 310 lbs. with the athleticism to go upfield. The concerns lie more in his power and leverage against better competition at the next level.

The 49ers have had particular success in the fifth-round in past NFL drafts with tight end George Kittle, linebacker Dre Greenlaw, and cornerback D.J. Reed working out well. Similar to the running back position, the 49ers doubled down on offensive linemen in the mid-rounds with the selection of Moore. Moore was a three-year starter at left tackle but projects as a guard and might have swing tackle versatility for depth purposes.

Considering all the injuries they had on both sides of the trenches, I can't fault the 49ers for investing in their offensive line. They paid a heavy premium to retain left tackle Trent Williams and will need to be strategic on how they replenish their front for the future. It seems like the 49ers are gearing up for a more physical brand of football with two offensive linemen and running backs apiece to build around the rookie quarterback, Trey Lance.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


  • Frank
    Good article, Justin. Here's what I see...even though the Niners exercised McGlinchey's 5th yr option, it may not mean they intend to re-sign him long-term. Enter Jaylon Moore...I see him as the swing OT this season. It really won't surprise me to eventually see him replace McGlinchey, as he's an excellent OT in the running game and pass protection.
    May 21, 2021 at 12:55 PM
    Response: That would definitely be the BEST case scenario if Moore is able to take over at right tackle!
  • donald
    Nice job Jonathon..
    May 19, 2021 at 8:15 PM
    Response: Much appreciated Donold..

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