Every year Twitter cooks up wild NFL trade ideas. “What if they take the first overall pick and trade for the star weapon???” It’s always some fantasy football pipe dream where they move a young, stud player from a rebuilding NFL team to play with a young quarterback on another. And guess what? This time, it actually happened and we have some NFL breaking news. The Chicago Bears are trading the No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft to the Carolina Panthers. In return, the Bears acquire star wide receiver DJ Moore, the 2023 ninth overall pick, a 2023 second round pick, a 2024 first round pick, and a 2025 second round pick. Ladies and gentlemen, we did it. Now the only question remaining is who the Panthers like out of Bryce Young, CJ Stroud, Anthony Richardson, and Will Levis with the first overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Let's break down the fantasy football impact of the NFL trade for both the Bears and Panthers heading into the 2023 season.
Chicago Bears Trade 2023 NFL Draft First Overall Pick to Carolina Panthers for DJ Moore
Carolina Panthers Receive:
- 2023 1st overall pick
Chicago Bears Receive:
- WR DJ Moore
- 2023 9th overall pick
- 2023 61 overall pick
- 2024 1st round pick
- 2025 2nd round pick
Fantasy Football Impact of DJ Moore Trade to Chicago Bears
The Bears were dead last in passing in 2022 as a team. In an attempt to correct that, they traded for Chase Claypool towards the end of 2022 and now DJ Moore in 2023. They’ll now have Claypool as a split end, Darnell Mooney as a field stretching speedster, DJ Moore who can operate both on the outside and out of the slot, and Cole Kmet at tight end. It’s a complete arsenal.
DJ Moore really has never had a high end quarterback throwing him the ball yet he’s still managed to accumulate 1,000+ yards in three seasons. The jury is still out on Fields but the Panthers literally don’t have a QB on the roster right now. Instead of starting again with an unproven rookie QB, Moore moves to work with a guy who is on the up and up.
Forget about the tight end for a second - if Justin Fields can come out and support three fantasy relevant wide receivers with his rushing ability, it won’t really matter which WR you have - whoever has Justin Fields is winning your fantasy league. The reality is that he will probably be able to support one, maybe two fantasy relevant assets. Claypool was already on the outside looking in to a certain degree but Mooney was also fairly inefficient with his targets - he got 140 targets in 2021 and just barely cracked 1,000 yards. DJ Moore will be an every down player so the question is whether they use Claypool at split end with Moore at flanker for two WR sets then bring in Mooney for 3 wide and move Moore to slot? Or is it Moore and Mooney with two tight ends then Claypool comes in for three wide? That variance combined with the obvious hit to their ceiling with Moore in town downgrades the ceiling for both players.
Such is the life of a mid range tight end for fantasy football. One day you’re a top two target on the team playing a ton of slot snaps and your window is wide open. The next they trade for two wide receivers and it slams shut. Kmet really needs to become a favorite of Fields this offseason if he’s going to battle Moore, Mooney, and Claypool.
Fantasy Football Impact of Carolina Panthers Trading DJ Moore
Terrace Marshall Jr.
Marshall was looking left for dead when the Panthers fired his former college coach Joe Brady. He was stuck behind DJ Moore and Chosen Anderson (at the time, Robbie Anderson). Now he’s the top dog on that depth chart. They obviously will add weapons as part of this rebuild but he’s the guy who was playing a full snap share before so it would take multiple players to displace him.
These two are battling to be slot/flanker. They could both be vaporized if the Panthers bring in another high end pass catcher but, as it stands, at least one of them is in the mix a full time snap share. The prudent thing to do in your dynasty league would be attempt to trade them away right now while they have a slight value boost.
I just wrote about how I don't love either of Tommy Tremble or Ian Thomas in fantasy. And my suggest is still to trade either of them while you can. But, if I had to pick one of the two, it would be Tremble. Ian Thomas was terribly inefficient back he was the pass catching tight end in 2020 and, over the last two years, he has essentially been asked to stay in and block on one of every four to five pass plays. That is not going to cut it for fantasy.
If you were holding onto Corral, he’s likely dust with this news. We’d like to think he could get a chance to compete but reports are he won’t even be recovered from Lisfranc surgery by the time camp starts. Whoever the pick at 1 is almost certainly the quarterback of this team Day 1.
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