Morgan Moses Jets shaquil barrett
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Morgan Moses showed off his pass protection potential with a great outing against star edge rusher Shaquil Barrett in the playoffs.

Run blocking is the crux of Morgan Moses‘ game. The newly-signed New York Jets right tackle was one of the fiercest run blockers in the NFL last season. The big man posted a PFF run-blocking grade that ranked second-best among right tackles.

In the other phase, Moses does not offer quite as high of a ceiling. Moses has typically been a fairly average pass blocker throughout his career. That remains the case today, as Moses’ 70.8 pass blocking grade in 2020 ranked 17th among qualified right tackles.

Moses tends to be a boom-or-bust player in the passing game. He has a handful of rough outings each season in which he is a liability but balances it out with a handful of stellar performances, which often come against star edge rushers.

With Taylor Heinicke at quarterback, the Washington Football Team posted 289 yards of passing offense against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the 2020 wild card round, which amounted to the sixth-highest total allowed by the Bucs over their 20-game season.

A huge reason that Washington was able to be so successful offensively against Tampa Bay’s second-ranked passing defense was Moses’ pass pro. He stood up pretty well against elite outside linebacker Shaquil Barrett.

In the regular season, Barrett compiled 63 pressures when lined up on the left side of the defense (opposite the opponent’s right tackle), ranking second in the NFL behind only T.J. Watt (72). Barrett clashed with Moses often in the wild card game (26 rushes off the left side), and Moses held him in check.

Here are some of Barrett’s numbers against Washington and where they ranked among his 19 games in the 2020 season:

  • 3 pressures (tied for second fewest)
  • 7.9% pressure rate (second worst)
  • 58.8 PFF pass-rush grade (fourth worst)

Let’s dig into this juicy matchup. We’ll take a look at wins from both Moses and Barrett – although the majority of these clips will be positive for Moses.

Moses wears #76, Barrett wears #58.

This is a fun hand-fighting battle to watch.

Moses gets into his 45-degree set, squares up Barrett, and throws the first punch as he fires his outside hand. Barrett swats it away to gain the advantage, but Moses recovers tremendously. Moses throws both hands and lands contact on the shoulders to temporarily slow Barrett.

Barrett gets his right hand into Moses’ chest and thrusts him back. Moses again recovers well as he rotates his hips outside, targets Barrett’s inside hip, and sends him up the arc to keep Heinicke clean.

Dominant hands from Moses here. Barrett sells downhill, gives an inside shoulder fake, and then continues outside.

As Barrett comes out of the fake and works outside, Moses throws his hands. Barrett initially swats down Moses’ right hand, but Moses stays with it, bringing his right hand straight back up and landing it into Barrett’s body. He gets his left into Barrett’s chest as well. Moses grabs Barrett’s jersey in the upper body area, establishing control and shutting down the rush.

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Michael Nania is one of the best analytical New York Jets minds in the world, combining his statistical expertise with game film to add proper context to the data. Nania scrapes every corner, ensuring you know all there is to know about everyone from the QB to the long snapper. Nania's Numbers, Nania's QB Grades, and Nania's All-22 give fans a deeper and more well-rounded dive into the Jets than anyone else can offer. Email: michael.nania[at] - Twitter: @Michael_Nania
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