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Rondale Moore Starts With Special Performance In First Home Game

Rookie receiver electric in Cardinals' win over Vikings

Wide receiver Rondale Moore scores on a 77-yard touchdown against the Vikings during a 34-33 win Sunday.
Wide receiver Rondale Moore scores on a 77-yard touchdown against the Vikings during a 34-33 win Sunday.

With 10 seconds left in the first half, Kyler Murray took the snap in the shotgun formation and connected with Rondale Moore near the 40-yard line.

Moore ran left and juked right, sending Vikings CB Mackensie Alexander to the ground. Then Moore ran right and faked left, this time sending linebacker Eric Kendricks to the turf as the speedster got himself out of bounds with one second on the clock.

The next play, Matt Prater set the franchise record with a 62-yard field goal.

Such a play is a reason why Cardinals GM Steve Keim drafted Moore in the second round in April. The rookie provides an element of speed and explosion the Cardinals' offense has lacked. Andy Isabella was supposed to fill that role, but it has not worked out.

Moore definitely worked out in Sunday's 34-33 win over the Vikings at State Farm Stadium.

"That guy is electric," tight end Maxx Williams said.

"You see the dynamic; the stuff he can do in space," coach Kliff Kingsbury said. "When he gets the ball that first guy rarely tackles him. He's got legit 4.29 speed and he's starting to build more confidence."

Moore hauled in seven catches and led all receivers with 114 yards and a touchdown -- which came when quarterback Kyler Murray spun out of a near sack, scrambled left, and found an open Moore near the sideline. Moore took it to the house untouched for the score.

Moore is averaging 14.3 yards after catch this season – 4.8 yards more than any other NFL player -- and said his only thought was to catch the ball.

"As he was scrambling, I was just like hopefully he sees me and as the ball was in the air I'm just thinking don't drop it," Moore said.

The Cardinals have had a balanced passing attack this season, with DeAndre Hopkins and A.J. Green operating outside, Christian Kirk in the slot, and Moore filling the role of "explosive." Through two games, the Cardinals passing game is averaging nearly 326 yards per game, second in the NFL. It's a reason to feel optimistic about the Cardinals chance to make noise this year.

Quarterback Kyler Murray had another impressive performance – completing 29 of 36 passes for 400 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions -- and said Moore's production level is not a surprise to him.

"Back before the draft, I sent Steve (Keim) a video I saw on Instagram of his one-on-ones in college," Murray said. "I knew nothing about the kid, but from that video, I knew he knew what he was doing as far as route running. He knew how to set guys up.

"His feel, his ability, you could see it. So I expected it from Rondale."