Kellen Moore

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Kellen Moore
Lions backup quarterback Kellen Moore hands the ball off.jpg
Moore (#17) handing the ball off in 2012
No. 17 Detroit Lions
Position: Quarterback
Personal information
Date of birth: (1989-07-12) July 12, 1989 (age 26)
Place of birth: Prosser, Washington
Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight: 197 lb (89 kg)
Career information
High school: Prosser (WA)
College: Boise State
Undrafted: 2012
Career history
Roster status: Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Stats at

Kellen Moore (born July 12, 1989) is an American football quarterback for the Detroit Lions of the National Football League. Moore was not selected in the 2012 NFL Draft, but signed a free agent contract following the conclusion of the draft. Moore finished his college career with Boise State University in 2011. Moore holds the unofficial all-time record for wins by a starting quarterback in NCAA Division I FBS with a 50–3 (.943) record (the NCAA's official record book does not have an entry for that statistic). As a junior, he finished fourth in the balloting for the 2010 Heisman Trophy.

Early years[edit]

Born and raised in Prosser, Washington, Moore grew up surrounded by the sport. His father Tom was head coach at Prosser High School from 1986 to 2008, winning 21 league titles and four state championships. During football season, he and younger brother Kirby, who also played at Boise State as a wide receiver, practiced plays in the backyard after football practice. As his father remembered in a 2011 interview, "He'd always have a little notepad with him. He was always drawing up plays." This immersion in football served him well as he developed—in his final two years of high school, his father let him call his own plays.[1]

According to his mother, Moore "grew fast, and then he didn't grow again" — he was 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m) as a high school sophomore, nearly his adult height.[1] His lack of height proved no obstacle to success at Prosser High. Moore was named the Gatorade Player of the Year for the state of Washington.[2] He lettered in football and basketball three times each and was named Velocity/Prep Star All-American and First-team All-state, and Division 2A MVP by the Seattle Times. He earned league player of the year honors as well as First-team All-league recognition as a sophomore, junior and senior. He was also Third-team All-state selection as a junior.

He set Washington state career records for completions (787) and touchdown passes (173). He also set state single-season records for completions (317 as a junior), yards (4,600 as a junior) and touchdown passes (67 as a senior).

He finished his career completing 787 of 1,195 passes (.659) for 11,367 yards and 173 touchdowns with 34 interceptions. He led Prosser to a 12–1 record in 2006 as a senior and a spot in the state semifinals, in a loss to the Centralia Tigers that included two interceptions. As a junior he completed 317-of-479 passes (66.2 percent) for 4,600 yards and 66 touchdowns with 15 interceptions. The year before, as a sophomore, he completed 179-of-308 passes (58.1-percent) for 2,442 yards and 39 touchdowns with 11 interceptions.

Moore's teammates at Boise State included his younger brother Kirby and childhood friend Cory Yriarte, a center for the Broncos. Kirby currently holds the national high school record for career touchdown receptions, with 95.[1]

College years[edit]


During the 2007 season, Moore was redshirted.


As a redshirt freshman in 2008, Moore led the Broncos to an undefeated regular season and the WAC championship while throwing 25 touchdowns and 9 interceptions in 12 games. In the final game of 2008, Boise State lost to Texas Christian University (TCU) in the 2008 Poinsettia Bowl, the first of two consecutive meetings for the non-Automatic Qualifying rivals.[3] He was named WAC Freshman of the Year and Second-team All-conference after spectacular first season, guiding Boise State to 12–1 record and was named Boise State's Most Valuable Offensive Player by vote of teammates. He was named to Phil Steele Publications' Second team All-WAC and also voted to the Football Writers Association of America's freshman All-America team.

He ranked 12th in nation in passing efficiency and 24th in total offense, averaging 265.85 yards per game and was first in WAC in passing efficiency (157.1) and second in total offense (265.8) and average passing yards per game (268.2). He completed 281 of 405 passes for 3,486 yards with 25 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.


In January 2009, Moore was ranked as the 37th best returning player in college football by College Football News.[4]

Moore threw for a school record 39 touchdowns with only 3 interceptions to lead the Broncos to a 14–0 record, another WAC title, and an at large bid to the Fiesta Bowl vs. undefeated #4 ranked TCU. The 2009 Fiesta Bowl was highly controversial due to the decision to pit the two non-Automatic Qualifying schools against each other instead of having them face Automatic Qualifying teams. The BCS was criticized for the perception that the risk of both, or either, team defeating a "power conference" team was too great, and that the BCS had TCU and BSU face each other so that the damage of their participation would be minimized. He finished the 2009 regular season with the highest passer efficiency rating in Division I-A with a rating of 167.3. In his first two years as a starting quarterback, Moore did not lose a regular season game.

Moore started against widely favored TCU and played the entire game. He had no interceptions, fumbles, or muffed snaps. He led the team on a 4th quarter 78-yard touchdown scoring drive to take the lead for good and win the game 17–10.

He was named First-team All-American by, a subsidiary of CBS Sports. He was named one of ten finalists for the Manning Award.[5] He was also First-team All-WAC and the WAC Offensive Player of the Year in 2009 and finished 7th in Heisman voting for 2009.


Moore in 2010.

Moore led the Broncos to a 33–30 victory over Virginia Tech on September 6, 2010. The game was highly anticipated and received a 6.8 TV rating, nearly twice that of the next most watched game. Moore contributed 3 passing touchdowns in the game with a final game-winning strike to Austin Pettis with 1:14 remaining in the game. As a result of the victory, Boise State received 8 first place votes in the week 2 AP Poll, and it moved up to third in the Coaches' Poll.[6][7] Moore was also mentioned by major sports media as a top candidate for the 2010 Heisman Trophy.[8] After finishing the season with 3,506 yards, 33 TDs and only 5 INTs, Moore was named a finalist for the Heisman Trophy and was invited to the ceremony in New York City to become the first ever Boise State player to be a Heisman finalist. Moore finished 4th in Heisman voting. Moore was also a finalist for the Davey O'Brien Award, the Maxwell Award, and the Manning Award (all won by Cam Newton). Moore was named the Touchdown Club of Columbus Quarterback of the Year. Boise State was invited to the 2010 Maaco Bowl Las Vegas, where they defeated Utah 26–3.


On March 28, 2011 the Sporting News named Moore as the #1 player in their annual list of the top 25 players in the nation.[9] He was ranked ahead of Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck and Oregon running back LaMichael James who both finished ahead of Moore in the 2010 Heisman voting. He only needed 8 wins during the 2011 season to pass Colt McCoy for most wins by a quarterback in NCAA history. He threw his 100th touchdown pass against Georgia during week one. Following an opening season win against Georgia in the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game, Moore was featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated, distributed only in the west.

With the Broncos defeat of Air Force on October 22, he tied former Texas quarterback Colt McCoy for the career wins record with 45 wins. On November 5, the Broncos defeated UNLV and Moore broke the record to become the FBS leader in career wins for a starting quarterback at 46. A perfect season, however, was spoiled again by a 36–35 loss to TCU.

He was one of three finalists for the Maxwell Award along with Andrew Luck and Trent Richardson (won by Luck). For the second year in a row, he was named the Touchdown Club of Columbus Quarterback of the Year and it was announced that beginning in 2012 the award will be known as the Kellen Moore Award. He currently is first in the FBS in completion percentage. With the Broncos' 56–24 win over Arizona State in the 2011 Maaco Bowl Las Vegas, Moore became the first quarterback in FBS history to win 50 games in his career.

College career statistics[edit]

Year Cmp Att Pct Yards Y/A TD Int Long Rating
2008 281 405 69.4 3486 8.6 25 10 80 157.1
2009 277 431 64.3 3536 8.2 39 3 67 161.7
2010 273 383 71.3 3845 10.0 36 6 83 182.6
2011 326 439 74.3 3800 8.7 43 9 71 175.2

Professional career[edit]

2012 NFL Draft[edit]

Despite his success in college, many analysts have doubted Moore's professional potential, especially his relatively small stature at slightly shorter than 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m),[10] as well as doubts about his running ability. He was projected as a late draft pick or priority free agent.[11] He was not selected in the 2012 NFL Draft, but was signed immediately post-draft by the Detroit Lions.[12] Upon being signed by Detroit, Moore stated, "I don't think there will probably be a more motivated quarterback." [13]

Detroit Lions[edit]

Preseason play[edit]

Moore has yet to be active for a regular season NFL game, however he has made several appearances for the Lions in the preseason. Despite the belief by some within the media Moore may unseat the newly signed Dan Orlovsky as the Lions primary backup during the 2014 season, Lions coach Jim Caldwell decided Orlovsky would remain the incumbent.[14][15][16][17][18] On February 21, 2014 it was announced the Lions will not place a restricted free agent tender offer on Moore, allowing him to explore other NFL options. Despite not tendering an offer, Lions General Manager Martin Mayhew expressed an interest in bringing Moore back for the 2015 season.[19] On March 6, 2015, the Lions signed Moore to a two-year contract worth $1.825 million.[20]

Games Played Completions Attempts Completion Percentage Yards TD INT Passer Rating Rush Att Rush Yards Rush TD Fumbles Fumbles Lost Sacked Sack Yards Lost
12 99 167 59.3 1028 8 3 85.6 12 5 1 2 1 5 18

Personal life[edit]

Moore earned his bachelor's degree before his final season of athletic eligibility, and is currently working on a master's in kinesiology. During his final season of college football, he was also deeply involved in an independent study project on what he termed as "what highly successful people do to become successful". In July 2011, he married Julie Wilson, who had been a three-sport athlete and valedictorian at Prosser High. The two had been dating since high school, when he was a sophomore and she a senior.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Murphy, Austin (October 24, 2011). "Moore With Less". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved October 19, 2011. 
  2. ^ Kellen Moore bio
  3. ^ Kellen Moore. profile (2011-01-02). Retrieved on 2012-04-26.
  4. ^ 100 Best Returning Players Of 2009 College Football News, January 16, 2009
  5. ^ News / Allstate Sugar Bowl. Retrieved on 2012-04-26.
  6. ^ Birmingham draws highest TV rating for Boise State-Virginia Tech. Birmingham News, September 7, 2010. Retrieved on 2012-04-26.
  7. ^ (8) Boise St. at (21) Virginia Tech., September 7, 2010. Retrieved on 2012-04-26.
  8. ^ ESPN College Football, September 14. (2011-12-05). Retrieved on 2012-04-26.
  9. ^ Kellen Moore tops Sporting News' annual Spring 25 – NCAA Football – Sporting News. (2011-03-28). Retrieved on 2012-04-26.
  10. ^ Huguenin, Mike. "Prolific QBs headline our 2012 All-Undrafted Team". Yahoo! Sports. 
  11. ^ NFL Draft Scout-Powered By: The Sports Xchange. Retrieved on 2012-04-26.
  12. ^ Rapoport, Ian (April 28, 2012). "Boise State QB Kellen Moore to sign with Detroit Lions". Retrieved April 29, 2012. 
  13. ^ Cripe, Chadd (April 29, 2012). "Boise State's Kellen Moore heads to Detroit as a free agent". Idaho Statesman. Retrieved May 1, 2012. 
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  20. ^ Twentyman, Tim (March 6, 2015). "Lions sign QB Kellen Moore to two-year deal". Detroit Lions. Retrieved March 6, 2015. 

External links[edit]