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Dan Moore Could Start Over Troy Fautanu in Week 1

The Pittsburgh Steelers could still trot Dan Moore Jr. out there as the Week 1 starter over Troy Fautanu, according to an insider.



Steelers LT Dan Moore Jr.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have a new offensive tackle in town after drafting Washington’s Troy Fautanu in the first round of the 2024 NFL Draft. But what does that mean for left tackle starter Dan Moore Jr.?

Moore, who has been the Steelers starting left tackle since his rookie year in 2021, is entering the final season of his contract. The Steelers have committed to moving 2023 first-round pick Broderick Jones to left tackle eventually, but after Moore held him off in training camp in 2023, and the Steelers released Chuks Okorafor as the top backup at right tackle, their near future at left tackle still seems uncertain.

Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette believes Moore still might start week one when asked who the starting tackles would be in in Week 1.

“Probably same as last year, at least to start the season. Unless they trade Dan Moore,” Dulac wrote.

Moore allowed eight sacks last season, which was tied for eighth-most in the league, according to Pro Football Focus. Moore’s PFF pass-blocking grade was 39.7, which ranked as the sixth-lowest in the league.

The Steelers reiterated that they view Fautanu as a tackle on Thursday night after his selection despite many pundits believing Fautanu is five spot versatile.

“Right now, we’re not concerned about that,” head coach Mike Tomlin said when asked about the possibility of him playing center. “We legitimately see him as a tackle.”

His projected versatility opens a myriad of possibilities for this year and next for the Steelers. They could play Fautanu at tackle this year, and then move him to guard in 2025, after starting right guard James Daniels’ contract expires. 

But the Steelers like to let rookies deal with the NFL transition as easily as possible, and so he will likely start out at a tackle position in 2024, and Moore will once again be in a battle for his starting job from OTAs on.