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The 2018 WR Sweet 16: (5) D.J. Moore vs. (12) Deon Cain

The RotoViz Wide Receiver Prospect Sweet 16 Tournament matches the top incoming prospects in a head-to-head March Madness style format. Various RotoViz writers break down each match-up with the winner moving on to the next round.



Catch up on any of the previous match ups in this series by clicking one of the links below.




D.J. Moore is riding a wave of momentum that has flowed like an avalanche since the combine. Moore’s breakout age (98th percentile), Dominator Rating (97th percentile) and SPARQ score (91st percentile) check all of the major boxes we look for here at RotoViz. The last hurdle for Moore was measuring out taller than expected at 6-feet. Moore sets up as a popular choice to go far in this tournament. How will our scouts like him against the 12 seed?

Deon Cain came into the 2017 season with high expectations after fellow Clemson WRs DeAndre Hopkins, Sammy Watkins, and Martavis Bryant have all had success at the NFL level. While Cain’s college resume doesn’t quite live up to those expectations, he showed himself an above average athlete at the combine. Cain put up consistent production, going over 700 yards and 6 touchdowns each of the last two years. Does he have enough to get past Moore?

Anthony Amico – D.J. Moore: Moore is going to win this tournament. Youth, production, athleticism, size, he has it all. I’m not going to waste any of the fun facts here in what I expect to be a sweep of Cain.

John Lapinski – D.J. Moore: This is an easy win for Moore, but Cain probably shouldn’t be ignored. He was a QB in high school who converted to WR and put up some nice YPR numbers playing behind Mike Williams at Clemson. While he failed to impress in his final year, much of that can be blamed on a steep drop in QB play with Deshaun Watson departing for the NFL. If Cain secures a solid landing spot, he could be an interesting target in the third round of rookie drafts.

Scott Smith – D.J. Moore: Moore was widely regarded as a second-round talent going into the combine. With many people expecting him to be 5-feet-11 or shorter, a weigh-in of 210 pounds and height of 6-feet got the ball rolling, and he now has the momentum that makes him the WR to beat in this bracket. Moore is young, productive, and athletic. He’s a top-five prospect in my rankings. Cain had a solid combine but has never quite lived up to expectations as a prospect at Clemson.

Cort Smith – D.J. Moore: A converted QB, Cain would probably have been best served by staying in college and continuing to develop as a WR. As it is, he’s relatively old and unproductive. He’ll need a good NFL landing spot to ever have a chance of becoming a late-round dynasty value.

Matt Wispe – D.J. Moore: Not only did Moore post a 0.53 Dominator rating during 2017, but he followed it up by outperforming all expectations at the NFL combine. Moore looks like the gem of this class, and he advances easily against Cain, who never exceeded 800 yards for a season.

Jordan Hoover – D.J. Moore: Moore is the early favorite for RotoViz WR Crush of Draft Season and for good reason. His combination of breakout age and final year production are unrivaled.

Blair Andrews – D.J. Moore: Anthony has the right idea by voting twice for Moore. To me he’s easily the best WR in this class. He’s probably better than Odell Beckham, right? To be honest, I didn’t even look at the other name in this matchup.

Hasan Rahim – D.J. Moore: The selection committee appears to have goofed and saddled Moore with a low seed. Moore was the top WR in Anthony Amico’s original model. Given the hype around this RB class, it’s possible Moore falls to the early-second in rookie drafts. He’s a screaming value at that price.

Ryan Bobbitt – D.J. Moore: Moore wins this going away and it’s easy to see why he’s a RotoViz favorite. I don’t have anything enlightening to add to the discussion, I’m just trying to stop the fight.


D.J. Moore entered the this matchup as the favorite and used that momentum for a clean sweep victory among our panel. Acing the combine erases some of the concerns scouts had about Moore from a physical standpoint, and he bests Cain in almost every category as a prospect. The questions for Moore now become how high will he be drafted and to what team? Moore sets up nicely to be a tough out the rest of the way.

D.J. Moore advances on to the next round and will have a ton of momentum against the winner of (4) Christian Kirk vs. (13) Michael Gallup.

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