Top Five Destinations for Knowshon Moreno after Super Bowl XLVIII
Where will Knowshon Moreno play in 2014?
Knowshon Moreno finally found his groove at the NFL level after four disappointing seasons with the Denver Broncos. His career year in 2013 has helped to propel Denver all the way to Super Bowl XLVIII where they will take on the Seattle Seahawks this Sunday. While it may seem like Moreno has finally found his role in the Denver offense and would be settling in for a long career in the Mile High city, the tough-running Moreno is more than likely done in Denver after the big game.
Moreno becomes an unrestricted free agent this offseason and will be considered one of the hottest running backs on the market. There will be a number of teams looking for help in their backfield who will be ready and willing to offer major deals to Moreno to secure his services. Denver doesn’t expect to have the money available that he’ll be looking for and will have to let him hit the open market this offseason and look for other options in the running game in 2014.
That won’t be easy. Moreno really proved himself this season, rushing for 1,038 yards on 241 carries while also providing a nice target in the passing game, catching 60 passes for 548 yards and scoring 13 total touchdowns on the season. Denver has some young backs on the roster that they started to work into the rotation down the stretch, including rookie back Montee Ball who appears ready to step into a more featured role next season. He finished 2013 with 559 yards on 110 and four touchdowns.
But if Moreno is not in Denver next season, where will he go? Let’s count down the top five destinations for the pending free agent following the 2014 Super Bowl.
5. New York Giants
The New York Giants suffered to establish a consistent running game in 2013 and it impacted their entire offense. They finished No. 29 in the league in rushing this season and were forced to shuffle through a number of different backs during the season due to injuries. Andre Brown is a free agent and has a history of injuries and David Wilson is coming off neck surgery. Moreno could provide a tough option in the running game to give some balance to a different Manning brother in 2014.
4. Atlanta Falcons
After almost making it to the Super Bowl last year, the Atlanta Falcons fell completely flat this season and a lack of a running game was a major reason why. The team ranked last in the NFL in rushing and Steven Jackson did not live up to expectations as the team’s big free-agent acquisition last offseason. Jackson is not guaranteed any money in 2014 so the team could easily cut him loose and go after Moreno whose versatility in the running and passing game would be a huge boost to the Falcons in 2014.
3. Cleveland Browns
There’s definitely a hole to fill at running back for the Cleveland Browns after they traded away their No. 1 running back Trent Richardson earlier this season. The team ranked No. 27 in rushing this season and only scored four rushing touchdowns all season long. An upgrade is desperately needed for the Browns to find some wins in 2014. While the team is likely to look to the draft to find some depth, adding Moreno, a proven veteran, could be a nice boost to a Cleveland roster with more talent than they’ve shown up to this point.
2. Oakland Raiders
The Oakland Raiders ranked No. 12 in rushing last season but could lose their top two running backs, Rashad Jennings and oft-injured Darren McFadden, to free agency. If they can’t keep one or both in Oakland, they’ll likely look to bring in some help for the running game through free agency. Moreno has a proven track record of success against the AFC West and might be able to give the Raiders a bit of insight how to slow down Peyton Manning and the Broncos’ offense (but probably not).
1. Miami Dolphins
The Miami Dolphins have been hoping that Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas would provide all the firepower they would need in the running game, but the duo has not produced as expected. The Miami running game ranked No. 26 in the NFL this season and the Dolphins are not shy about going out and signing free agent help to address a need. Upgrading the running game is certainly a priority this offseason and signing Moreno could be a great way to get that done.