At this time last year, Kenny Moore II was performing at his highest level. He was selected to go to the Pro Bowl and had the most interceptions on the Colts team. He celebrated after making successful tackles and interceptions and was nominated for the Walter Payton Man of the Year award.
Once the matches between the Raiders and Jaguars were over, the season ended, and a problematic off-season began. Reflecting on what went wrong this year, Moore II points to that as the starting point.
Moore II expressed that the news had a profound effect on him, noting that Coach Eberflus was someone he held close to his heart and was someone he dedicated himself to playing for. He fondly remembered the prosperous times they had together.
The departure of Eberflus from the Bears caused the rest of the Colts’ defensive coaches to follow, leading to a new system under Gus Bradley. The secondary changed, with the Colts dealing Ya-Sin to the Raiders and allowing George Odum to become a free agent just before Khari Willis decided to retire.
Moore II hoped to capitalise on his Pro Bowl recognition to have a more promising future. He declined to participate in the spring practices due to a minor contractual disagreement, thus depriving him of the time necessary to adjust to the new defensive system.
Moore II stated that coaching and playing should go hand in hand, but it didn’t work out that way for them. He felt he needed help to provide the team with what they needed and couldn’t give himself what he wanted. Ultimately, it was a difficult season for 23.
Despite Bradley’s impressive history of creating successful defensive strategies, such as the Seahawks “Legion of Boom” secondary, he is known for using the nickel position primarily to provide extra coverage rather than a hybrid safety as Moore II was under Eberflus.
This caused Moore II to be at a size disadvantage in 1-on-1 matchups, resulting in a decrease in interceptions from 4 to 0 and passes deflected from 13 to 4. Moore II acknowledges that this caused him to be unable to make the same impactful plays he was used to.
Since he went undrafted and was cut by the Patriots, Moore II has experienced various confidence levels, with this year being slightly lower. Moore II commented that he hasn’t been able to showcase what he can do this season, feeling as if he was in the background.
He intends to make a fresh start this off-season, both mentally and physically. His last game was in Week 12 against the Steelers, when he got an ankle sprain so severe that he had to use a scooter the following week. Despite his attempts to return before the season ended, he was placed on the injured reserve list in the last week.
His contract pays him $7.5 million annually, and he has no dead money remaining. With a new coach coming in, he knows his future is uncertain, like many other players. He expressed his desire to stay in Indianapolis, a place he never thought he would leave, but he realised that no one was safe in this business.
He is grateful for the opportunity to wear the No. 23 and play at Lucas Oil Stadium and believes the fans deserve more. My family name on the back of the shirt carries more significance than anyone can understand.