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Browns 3rd RB could come from the WR room

Elijah Moore has shown his versatility at Browns training camp

Cleveland Browns Offseason Workout Photo by Nick Cammett/Diamond Images via Getty Images

Labels often mean very little in the NFL but that are the easiest way to describe and categorize things so they are used quite often. For example, as we shared when discussing DT Dalvin Tomlinson’s role for the Cleveland Browns, “defensive tackle” is used to describe two different positions on the interior of the defensive line.

The Browns roster is quite talented going into the 2023 season. Training camp has shown that the offense has players at multiple positions despite injuries. As we saw with two other AFC contenders, injuries can change everything.

One area of depth concern on Cleveland’s roster is behind Nick Chubb and Jerome Ford at running back. Hassan Hall, John Kelly Jr. Nate McCrary and Demetric Felton, all unproven, will compete to be labeled as the team’s third running back. However, it is possible that the player who actually gets the most carries as the third back is WR Elijah Moore:

We saw Moore in the backfield, alongside QB Deshaun Watson and Chubb, during OTAs.

The NFL has become more and more about the versatility of weapons. Whether it is quarterback running, a running back as a receiver or, in this case, a receiver as a running back, the more you can do the more dynamic and offense can be. Deebo Samuel, for example, cashed in big time on his playmaking abilities from the backfield and as a receiver.

Going into 2023, expectations are high for Moore despite only 80 receptions for 984 yards and six touchdowns in two seasons. QB Zach Wilson is the primary reason for Moore’s limited production (80 receptions while targeted 142 times with just 3 drops means a lot of off-target throws).

Moore also had 10 rushing attempts for 59 yards and a touchdown in New York. In his final season at Ole Miss, Moore had 14 carries for 64 yards as well.

While the expectations may be high for Moore, he is embracing the larger role and opportunities to get the ball in his hands. Just in the above video, we saw him taking a handoff out of the backfield, a jet sweep and running a route as a receiver.

The Browns will have a third running back by name on the roster but Moore could fill the actual role on the field.

How do you feel about the continued expectations being placed on Elijah Moore from media and fans?