The emergence of A.J. Terrell into an All-Pro corner has shifted the conversation to the other side of the field. In 2021, that position was manned by Fabian Moreau, and judging by comments here and on Twitter, it would seem the Falcons fan base is ready to see Moreau elsewhere in 2022.
Is that fair, though? Let’s take a look at the case for (and against) bringing him back next season.
50 receptions (65.8%)
523 yards (10.5 yards per reception)
7 touchdowns allowed, 0 interceptions, 6 pass break ups
116.3 NFL passer rating allowed
11 penalties !!!
The case for signing Moreau
I’m just going to put this out there and run the risk of getting roasted for it: Fabian Moreau was not that bad in 2021. Yes, he had a painful number of penalties, but he was also frequently targeted (see: A.J. Terrell) and that combination will always draw the ire of fans. Comparatively, though, his numbers put him around league average, if not slightly below that.
So, why would you want to bring a below average player back? Well, for starters, he was inexpensive. His 1 year deal was under $1.2 million and he’s only going to be 28 this year. I’m not advocating for a big deal for Moreau, but if he can be brought back on a similar deal, he has value as a veteran who will have had a full year under this new scheme.
Even if you draft a rookie to be the long-term answer on the opposite side of Terrell, having Moreau available allows you to ease that player in. He’s not a great player, but he has some value and can certainly start, especially if he’s brought in for a similar contract.
The case against signing Moreau
The Falcons have drafted several corners in recent years and you eventually have to turn it over to those guys. Darren Hall and Avery Williams got time on the field in 2021 and Hall showed some promise down the closing stretch of the season. Additionally, the upcoming draft may afford you another opportunity to stock the position, making Moreau the odd man out as you try to get younger across the board.
As a below-average player through most of his career, Moreau is clearly not the long-term answer at CB2 and the team would do well to try and make corner a position of strength with A.J. Terrell positioned to be one of the league’s best for years to come. You’d prefer not to have to continually look for stopgaps, and while Moreau was a pleasant surprise in some ways, that’s what he is for this team.
The verdict: Re-sign Fabian Moreau
The Falcons should try to bring him back on a similar deal as the one he played on in 2021, though he may command a bit more money after starting 16 games. He isn’t the long-term answer on the opposite side of A.J. Terrell, but he can also help bridge the gap in case guys like Hall or Williams aren’t quite ready to take the role on.
Having a veteran who is now familiar with Dean Pees scheme is almost worth the contract alone. If he only amounts to your 3rd or 4th corner in 2022, that is still good value for this amount of money, or even a bit more.