BOONE — Former Appalachian State running back Jalin Moore has traveled many miles on his journey to the NFL.
And that’s just for the pre-draft interviews. Moore has traveled all over the country interviewing with teams who may be looking to add a running back to their roster. Moore will find out which team will take a chance on him this weekend, either during the NFL draft or afterwards if he is signed as a free agent.
The first round of the draft is April 25. The second and third rounds are April 26 and the fourth through the seventh rounds are April 27. The entire draft will be held in Nashville, Tenn.
“It’s been a long process,” Moore said. “It’s what it is. It’s a work in progress process. It’s a big transition from college to being a professional athlete. I’m just getting my feet wet.”
Moore, who prepped at Crest High School in Shelby, has worked out for several teams, including the Carolina Panthers. New Orleans, Kansas City, Chicago, Houston, Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Detroit have also worked out Moore, who is getting the attention despite an ankle injury that cost him half of the 2018 season.
“(Kansas City) is definitely looking for a running back,” Moore said. “Every team I’ve seen is looking for a running back. I was there for a reason.”
It’s all part of becoming an NFL player, according to Moore, who was unable to participate in drills at the NFL Scouting Combine, but did everything but run the 40-yard dash at the Appalachian State Pro Day on April 4.
The question that Moore gets the most from different teams centers around his ankle. He said April 23 that his ankle is feeling much better.
“It feels real good,” Moore said. “It’s about 90-95 percent.”
Moore said he expects to know more about his status on April 27. Moore is hopeful he could be selected by the end of the third round on April 26, but he’s just hopeful to land into an NFL camp by the end of the weekend.
Moore said he grew up a Panthers fan, but has no preference for which team that drafts him, or signs him to a free agent deal should he go undrafted.
“I’d expect that it would be on day three,” Moore said. “I wasn’t a five-star (recruit), but I always had thoughts for myself that I would have the chance.”
Moore showed signs of brilliance while at App State. He rushed for 1,450 yards and scored 10 touchdowns in his sophomore season. He added 1,037 yards and scored 12 touchdowns his junior season.
Moore had piled up 400 yards and averaged 6.3 yards per carry in five games last season before he dislocated his ankle on a touchdown run against Arkansas State.
Moore missed the rest of the season because of the injury, but was still invited to the scouting combine. He did not participate in any of the drills, but bench-pressed 225 pounds 27 times.
He did not run the 40-yard dash at the Appalachian State Pro Day, but he showed a vertical leap of 33 inches and ran several pass-catching drills. After the drills, Moore met with several scouts for nearly two hours.
Several other Mountaineers are also hoping to either be drafted or sign as a free agent with an NFL team. Cornerback Clifton Duck, a junior, declared himself eligible for the draft at the end of the 2018 season.
Others include defensive lineman MyQuon Stout, linebacker Anthony Flory, defensive backs Tae Hayes and Austin Exford, running back Dominique Heath and long snapper Elias McMurry were all worked out at the Appalachian State Pro Day.