The wide receiver-needy New England Patriots have shown interest in one of the top pass-catchers in the 2021 NFL Draft.
The Patriots met virtually with speedy Purdue wide receiver Rondale Moore, The Draft Network’s Justin Melo reported Wednesday.
Moore, who’s 5-foot-9, 180 pounds, is graded as a first-round prospect by Pro Football Focus. He caught 178 passes for 1,915 yards with 14 touchdowns and carried the ball 30 times for 248 yards with three touchdowns in three seasons with the Boilermakers. Moore caught just 64 passes for 657 yards with two touchdowns in his last two seasons while being limited to seven games due to hamstring and leg injuries.
Moore primarily played out of the slot at Purdue. He ran a 4.33-second 40-yard dash with a 4.01-second short shuttle and 42.7-inch vertical leap while coming out of Trinity High School in Louisville, Ky., as a recruit. He led his recruiting class in the 40-yard dash and in SPARQ Rating.
PFF called Moore “one of the most electric players with the ball in his hands in college football” but noted he might not be a complete receiver in the NFL. They compared him to All-Pro wide receiver Steve Smith.
The Patriots also recently met with Louisville running back Javian Hawkins, per Melo.
Hawkins, who’s 5-foot-9, 196 pounds, carried the ball 399 times for 2,355 yards with 16 touchdowns and caught 21 passes for 189 yards with one score in three college seasons.
PFF has Hawkins graded as a sixth-round pick and notes he has “absurd quicks” but has concerns about the running back’s size. They compared him to former West Virginia running back Noel Devine.