8 things to know about new Bears WR DJ Moore

The Chicago Bears traded the No. 1 pick to the Carolina Panthers for an impressive haul that included two first-rounders, two second-rounders and wide receiver DJ Moore. The trade will become official when the new league year begins Wednesday at 3 p.m. CT.

Moore is an immediate upgrade for Chicago’s passing game, which gives quarterback Justin Fields a true No. 1 receiver. Moore is one of the most underrated wideouts in the league, and he’ll be Fields’ top weapon heading into 2023. Moore joins a receiver group that also includes Darnell Mooney, Chase Claypool, Velus Jones Jr. and Equanimeous St. Brown.

Here are eight things to know about the Bears’ new wide receiver:

Moore has three 1,000 yard receiving seasons in five years

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Moore has quietly been an elite No. 1 wide receiver in the NFL. Just look at his production. Moore has eclipsed 1,100 receiving yards in three of his first five seasons, including a career-high 1,193 yards in 2020.

The only other wideout on the Bears who has a 1,000-yard receiving season to his name is Darnell Mooney, who recorded 1,055 yards in 2021. Chase Claypool has come close twice, but he hasn’t bested his 873 yards in his rookie season.

Moore would be the Bears' all-time leading receiver

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It’s hard to believe — or maybe not — but Moore would be the Bears’ all-time leading receiver after his first five years in the league. Johnny Morris is Chicago’s all-time leader with 5,059 yards during his 10 years with the Bears from 1958-67.

In just half that span, Moore already has 5,201 yards since being drafted by the Panthers in 2018. That includes three 1,000-yard receiving seasons and he’s never had less than 788 receiving yards in a year.

Moore's also one of few WRs to have 1,200 scrimmage yards in 3 seasons before age 26

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Moore is at his best with the ball in his hands, whether that’s in the passing game or on the ground. According to Marcus Mosher, Moore is among elite company in his first few seasons.

Moore is one of seven wide receivers to have 1,200 scrimmage yards in at least three seasons before age 26. Randy Moss leads the pack with five from 1998-2002. But Moore is tied with five others, including Larry Fitzgerald, DeAndre Hopkins, Mike Evans, Odell Beckham Jr.

Moore hasn't had good quarterback play around him

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It’s no secret that the Panthers have had bad quarterback play for quite some time. And yet, Moore has still managed to be an elite receiver for the likes of quarterbacks Kyle Allen, Will Grier, Teddy Bridgewater, PJ Walker, Sam Darnold, Baker Mayfield and Cam Newton near the end of his career.

Simply put: Moore hasn’t played with a great quarterback. While Justin Fields still has to prove himself as a passer — which Moore and an improved offensive line should help with — you could argue Fields is the best quarterback Moore will play with.

Moore has only missed two games in his NFL career

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There’s plenty to be excited about when it comes to Moore’s impact in the passing game, but an under-appreciated aspect of his game is his durability. Moore has only missed two games in his first five seasons in the NFL, and he’s played all 17 games in the last two years.

Moore was a must-have for Poles in trade

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The Bears landed a haul for the first overall pick. But it sounds like Moore was a big reason why Poles pulled the trigger. According to Mike Kaye, Moore was a “must” for the Bears in trade talks with the Panthers for the No. 1 pick. Chicago was “adamant that he be included in the deal.”

When you look at how young quarterbacks have taken a big step forward in Year 3, a common denominator is acquiring a No. 1 wideout to help said quarterback. Whether it’s Josh Allen-Stefon Diggs or Tua Tagovailoa-Tyreek Hill or Jalen Hurts-AJ Brown, it’s been a trend that’s had productive results. So it’s no secret why Poles wanted to land an elite WR1 for Fields ahead of a pivotal Year 3.

Moore signed a contract extension last offseason

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Moore will be under contract in Chicago through 2025, thanks to Carolina inking him to an affordable contract extension. Last March, Moore signed a three-year deal worth $61.88 million with $41.8 million guaranteed.

According to Spotrac, Moore’s remaining contract is three years for $52.3 million, as the Panthers will eat the $14.625 million in dead money. Moore is slated to have salary cap hits of $20.2 million (2023), $16.1 million (2024) and $16.1 million (2025).

Now, the Bears get Moore for the next three seasons, which puts him on the same track as quarterback Justin Fields.

The Packers offered a first-round pick for Moore

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First Chase Claypool, now DJ Moore. The Bears have managed to steal a couple of wide receivers from the Packers, which just makes it all the sweeter. According to Jay Glazer, Green Bay offered a first-round pick in exchange for Moore ahead of the trade deadline last November.

Not only did Chicago acquire a true No. 1 wideout in Moore, but they also landed two first-rounders and two second-rounders in the trade for the No. 1 pick.

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Story originally appeared on Bears Wire