The all-time leading scorer for the Michigan Wolverines Jake Moody is hoping to hear his name called this weekend during the NFL Draft. Despite being a kicker, Moody can join an exclusive list that typically adds at least one player to its ranks every draft.
Aside from 2010 and 2015, at least one kicker has been selected in every NFL Draft since 1999. Some have had immediate success (Mason Crosby), while others quickly kicked their way into semi-professional ball (Roberto Aguayo). Moody is looking to join the former and become the first Michigan kicker since Hayden Epstein (2002) to be drafted.
Money Moody was awarded the 2021 Lou Groza Award and holds the career program records for points (355), field goals (69), PAT percentage (100%), 40-plus yard field goals (17). He is also tied for the most 50-plus yard field goals (4). Furthermore, he flashed the leg in College Football Playoff last season by drilling a 59-yarder, quickly catching the attention of NFL scouts.
But where could Moody land? Most mock drafts project the former Wolverine going as high as the fifth round and very few see him slipping beyond the sixth. Let’s take a look at three likely landing spots for the Michigan legend.
Los Angeles Rams
The Rams have been the favorite to draft Moody ever since Matt Gay left in free agency and joined the Indianapolis Colts. Despite lacking top-end picks, the Rams possess eight selections between rounds five and seven, and could use one to sure up their kicker position. Seemingly hoping to make one more run at a Super Bowl with Matthew Stafford, Moody could bring his clutch gene to a team that expects to be in high-pressure situations.
Green Bay Packers
Mason Crosby is 137 years old. Slight exaggeration, but the veteran kicker will be 39 in September and the Packers need to start thinking about the future. Despite Crosby being a free agent, he is expected to come back for at least a “retirement season” before riding off into the sunset.
Crosby could serve as a mentor to Moody and help show him the tricks of the trade regarding kicking at Lambeau Field. While Moody has experience kicking in the northern climate, learning from the No. 11 all-time leading scorer would only benefit him.
With a nickname like “Money,” it only makes sense he could play in Jerry World.
The Cowboys unsurprisingly did not resign kicker Brett Maher after he became the first kicker since 1932 to miss four extra points in any game last season. The only kicker on the current roster is former practice squad kicker Tristan Vizcaino, and the Cowboys need a player who can kick under pressure.
Moody has flashed time and time again his ability to carry a team (at Nebraska in 2021) and save a team (vs. Illinois in 2022). With the star on the helmet practically representing a target for criticism, he is one of the few specialists who will not crumble.