Paisley, Renfrewshire born centre forward and later centre half Joe Moffatt was one of the more travelled journeymen footballers of the late Victorian and Edwardian era. He started his football career with with Bo’ness around 1895 and played for Abercorn from July 1896. He returned to Bo’ness in December 1896, joining Wishaw Thistle in February 1897. He played again for Bo’ness in November 1897, from where he joined St Mirren for his first spell with The Buddies. He first moved to play in England in 1898, joining Southern League club Chatham, moving to play for Gravesend United later the same year. In August 1899 he moved to Second Division club Walsall, where he made his Football League debut at Small Heath in September 1899, scoring 13 goals in 30 appearances including scoring a hat-trick in a win over Luton Town in February 1900, before a move to Tottenham Hotspur in May 1900, where, mainly a reserve, he scored 3 goals in 9 competitive appearances.
He returned to Bo’ness in 1901 from where he re-joined St Mirren in September 1901, where he scored 16 goals in 43 appearances during his second spell. His performances alerted First Division club Manchester City, who signed him in April 1903. A fringe player over his two years at Hyde Road, he scored 5 goals in 22 appearances and first started playing at centre half, before returning to Scotland in May 1905, joining Kilmarnock, where he scored twice in 10 appearances. He retuned to England firstly with Nelson in 1907 and then joining Southern League club Watford in August 1908, before finishing his career with a season at Aberdeen in 1909-10, where he scored once in 14 appearances during their First Division campaign. After his retirement Moffatt was later a coach at Kilmarnock.
His brother Bobby Moffatt played with him at St Mirren, Manchester City and Kilmarnock.