Boise State's Moore in camp with Lions
ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP)
By now, Kellen Moore is used to the doubters.
His Boise State team fought for respect throughout his college career, and after leading the Broncos to 50 victories - a Football Bowl Subdivision record for a starting quarterback - Moore still went undrafted last month.
He's in camp with the Detroit Lions this weekend after signing on with them as a free agent, and in a way, this is merely the latest chance for poised left-hander to prove himself.
''I think that's like a lot of us - we like to kind of take an underdog approach,'' Moore said. ''That's the way all sports teams try to take it. You always try and find a way to be the underdog in your mind, and get excited about opportunities.''
Moore completed nearly 70 percent of his passes in four years at Boise State - not bad, considering Idaho was the only other bowl school to offer a scholarship. Last season, he threw for 3,800 yards with 43 touchdowns and nine interceptions.
Of course, those aren't the only numbers attached to Moore's profile. The 6-foot, 197-pound Moore will have to overcome concerns about his size and arm strength. He's 3 inches shorter than Matthew Stafford and Shaun Hill, the top two quarterbacks on Detroit's depth chart.
That helps explain why pick after pick went by in the draft without Moore's name being called. By the time it was over, he was ready to put that experience behind him.
''I kind of quit watching toward the end,'' Moore said. ''We were more doing phone conversations and just sorting it all out. ... Obviously, like any kid, your dream is certainly to be drafted. Things happen for a reason, and things come in goofy ways.''
Drew Stanton, Detroit's No. 3 quarterback, left as a free agent this offseason, opening a potential spot for somebody such as Moore. Coach Jim Schwartz has been hesitant to read too much into anybody's performance during this three-day rookie minicamp, which started Friday.
''He's left-handed,'' Schwartz cracked when asked what he's noticed about Moore.
But the Lions brought him in for a reason, and they don't expect him to be overwhelmed by the adjustment to the pros.
''He's used to being a quarterback, he's used to being the center of attention,'' Schwartz said. ''He's started a lot of football games, he's won a lot of football games, that shows through the most about him.''
Only one quarterback under 6-foot-2 was drafted this year - Wisconsin's 5-foot-11 Russell Wilson went to Seattle in the third round - so the size issue is one Moore will have to face as he tries to forge a career in the NFL. And then there's the challenge of learning a new team's system with little time to waste.
''It's football, and there's a lot of different ways of running an offense,'' Moore said. ''It's just a matter of getting out here, getting to understand the terminology, the way they do things.''
If Moore does end up playing for the Lions, he may have a chance to toss a few more passes to Titus Young, one of his former college teammates. The Lions drafted the talkative Young in the second round last year, and he caught 48 passes as a rookie.
''I'm excited to see that kid again,'' Moore said. ''He's a funny, funny guy. It's going to be a lot of fun to be around him again.''
After Young's success last season, six more Boise State players were taken in the 2012 draft. Moore wasn't one of them, but the reputation he earned in college has followed him to Allen Park.
''Obviously he has (had) a lot of success - I think 50 wins in college. And those weren't 50 wins against inferior opponents, he's gone on the road and beaten some big-time teams,'' Schwartz said. ''His talent was there and he's got a good resume. We think he'll fit in well with us.''