FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) — New York Jets wide receiver Elijah Moore, who recently expressed frustration with his suddenly limited role, requested to be traded Thursday, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press.
Moore was excused from practice by the team, according to coach Robert Saleh, to be with his family to attend to a personal matter.
Moore spent the day away from the facility and has asked to be dealt. But the Jets have no plans to trade him, said the person who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because details of the conversations were private.
NFL Network first reported the request by Moore to be traded.
Moore wasn’t seen during the early portion of practice that reporters can watch. Saleh, who doesn’t have a news conference on Thursdays, briefly updated reporters standing on the sideline on the reason for Moore’s absence without providing details.
The trade request comes as the surprising 4-2 Jets have won three straight games and are off to their best start since 2015.
Moore becomes the second Jets wide receiver to request a trade after Denzel Mims did so during training camp. But as is the case with Moore, the team has no plans to deal him.
In the first of three posts on Twitter on Thursday, Moore said: “Love my teammates!” That was followed by: “When someone tell u how they feel the first time BELIEVE THEM!” The final tweet read: “God I need direction.” The last two have since been deleted. Earlier Thursday, Moore also tweeted: “God makes no mistakes….I trust u through it Allllllll…”
Moore, a second-round pick last year out of Mississippi, created some buzz Sunday on social media after New York’s 27-10 victory at Green Bay when he quote-tweeted a reporter’s post that pointed out he had no official receiving targets in the game. He actually had one on a deep incompletion in the second quarter, but it was negated by a penalty.
“If I say what I really wanna say…I’ll be the selfish guy…we winning,” Moore said in the since-deleted post. “Grateful! Huge blessing! All I ever wanted. Butter sweet for me em but I’ll be solid. So I’ll just stay quiet.
“Just know I don’t understand either.”
Moore is coming off a promising rookie season during which he caught 43 passes for 538 yards and five touchdowns in 11 games, including six starts.
His production is down this season, though, with just 16 catches for 203 yards and no scores in six games — all starts — while working in an offense that includes wide receivers Corey Davis, rookie Garrett Wilson and Braxton Berrios, tight ends C.J. Uzomah and Tyler Conklin and pass-catching running backs Breece Hall and Michael Carter. The Jets have also focused more on running the ball in recent weeks.
“We’ve had conversations. He’s fine,” Saleh said Monday when asked about Moore’s postgame tweets. “He’s a competitive young man. Like everybody, when you’re a competitor like him, he wants to contribute.”
Saleh added he has no problems with Moore.
“He’s one of our high-character individuals,” the coach said. “I love him to death. Eventually, the production part of it that he’s hoping for will come. He’s just continuing to work.”
On Thursday, offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur echoed Saleh’s comments and added he has had “open dialogue” with the wide receiver, but “we’re going to keep it in-house.”
Quarterback Zach Wilson said the two have spoken and it’s a matter of “just keep encouraging” Moore. Wilson reiterated the Jets haven’t passed the ball much during the past few games.
And that’s true: Wilson was 10 of 18 for 110 yards last Sunday at Green Bay, and 14 of 21 for 210 yards against Miami — with Moore getting one catch for 11 yards on four targets — two weeks ago.
“It’s not a thing where I’m trying to avoid him or whatever it is because he’s a great player,” Wilson said. “It’s about just being patient and trusting the process. I only had 10 completions last week, but we won the game, so it’s awesome. I love him and I hope he understands that he’s special to our team.”
The Jets play at Denver on Sunday. There was no immediate word on when Moore would return to the team or whether he’ll be available to play in the game.
NOTES: DE Jermaine Johnson (ankle) didn’t practice and isn’t expected to play. … LT Duane Brown (shoulder), S Ashtyn Davis (hamstring), WR Braxton Berrios (back), LB Quincy Williams (ankle) were all limited.
More AP NFL coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL