Kellen Moore’s stock improving as cuts loom

The former Boise State star has performed well in the preseason.

DETROIT FREE PRESSAugust 25, 2013 

In his second year with the Lions, quarterback Kellen Moore is gaining a greater knowledge of the offense as he fights for a spot on the 53-man roster.

DETROIT — The Lions have kept three quarterbacks in each of Martin Mayhew’s four seasons as general manager, and if they do so again this year, Kellen Moore will return as Matthew Stafford and Shaun Hill’s backup.

Visiting scouts insist Moore’s arm, a concern that contributed to his going undrafted out of Boise State last year, has improved some, and Moore said earlier this month he’s more relaxed and confident in his decisions.

In Thursday’s 40-9 exhibition win over the New England Patriots, Moore played his best half of football as a Lions player.

Playing with the second-team offense, Moore completed 9-of-12 passes for 150 yards and led three scoring drives in as many possessions.

He threw touchdown passes of 22 yards to Joseph Fauria and 15 yards to Micheal Spurlock, and was 5-for-5 on third downs.

“I think Kellen’s been very good in camp,” Lions coach Jim Schwartz said. “He’s moved the offense, he’s made good decisions, he’s thrown the ball very well. I think you’re just seeing an extension of that. Probably his most extensive playtime (came Thursday), and did a good job of leading us and getting some passes in there. But we’ve been seeing that from him all training camp.”

The Lions still have some roster decisions to make before Saturday’s final cut to 53 players.

They have enough injury concerns (Montell Owens and Michael Williams went down Thursday) and position battles (at cornerback and safety, where they might need to keep an extra player as insurance for Louis Delmas) that keeping two quarterbacks to free up an extra roster spot might be ideal.

But Moore’s recent play, and the security of having a third quarterback with Hill nursing an injury, could make that tough to do.

“Kellen played great,” Stafford said. “I thought the (offensive) line did a great job of keeping him upright. He spun it great, just like he’s been doing all camp, and you get that running game going, those windows open up in the pass game and he was right on. I was happy for him.”

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