The veteran wide receiver has dealt with tough QB situations in Carolina and has now been traded to a Bears team that barely passed at all last season. There is a lot of debate on if this is an improved situation for Moore or not and where he should fall on fantasy football player rankings. Hopefully, you've already been doing some fantasy football mock drafts and you've checked out the fantasy football draft guide so you can start building some strategies around how to approach the rookies in this year's draft.

But even with all of that research, you are probably still staring at certain players, wondering if drafting them at their current fantasy football ADP is, not just giving you the proper value, but if they are even right for you or your team. Is the juice worth the squeeze? 

This is where we come in with our all-new Fantasy Football Player Debate series where two analysts go head-to-head and give you the pros and cons to help with your decisions.

Today, Colby Conway and Howard Bender go head-to-head to help you decide whether you want to or even should draft Chicago Bears WR, DJ Moore


Why You Should Draft D.J. Moore in Fantasy Football

By Howard Bender

It seems like only yesterday I was telling people to avoid drafting D.J. Moore at his ADP and here I am today telling you the complete opposite. OK, so it wasn’t yesterday. It was more like last year and right here during our same Player Debate series. But here I am looking at some fantasy football ADP and thinking to myself that 51.76, a mid-to-late fourth-round pick in a 12-team league, is a pretty solid spot to draft the Chicago Bears’ new No. 1 wide receiver.

Let’s start with the new landing spot for our hero. Last season, Moore was considered the Carolina Panthers’ top target, but there were still a few things working against him. First and foremost, his coach, Matt Rhule, was finding it difficult to have the same success he did with his system at the collegiate level. He ditched offensive coordinator Joe Brady and throughout the season, the Panthers struggled, ranking 29th in both passing and total yards and 20th in points scored. The array of mediocre quarterbacks – Baker Mayfield, Sam Darnold, P.J. Walker and Jacob Eason – weren’t helping the situation at all and Moore’s numbers suffered considerably. He did have seven touchdowns, but 63 receptions for 888 yards was not cutting it in either fantasy or reality.

Now in Chicago, Moore has an opportunity to really shine. Some will knock the number of attempts and the accuracy for Justin Fields, but now in his second year as offensive coordinator, Luke Getsy, has everyone buying into his west-coast system and Fields seems primed to turn a very important corner. Think about when Lamar Jackson entered his sophomore campaign. Back then, Greg Roman asked of him exactly what Getsy is asking of Fields. Focus on the short, high-percentage passes, improve your accuracy and the rest of the offense will open up. Jackson did just that and the results were spectacular.

Now think about what the Eagles did for Jalen Hurts in his third season as Philadelphia’s quarterback. They asked him to maintain his mobility and not be afraid to run, but to also trust his newest weapon in A.J. Brown. Not only did he still rush for 760 yards with 13 touchdowns, but he also threw for over 3,700 yards and 22 touchdowns while bumping his accuracy level up to 66.5-percent. The parallels between Fields, Jackson and Hurts cannot be ignored. 

As such, Brown enjoyed his most prolific season with almost 1,500 yards and 11 touchdowns while top Ravens targets in Mark Andrews and rookie Marquise Brown combined for almost 1,400 yards and 17 touchdowns. As the No. 1 target in this offense, Moore is likely to produce career numbers across the board. Fellow receivers Darnell Mooney and Chase Claypool should help draw some coverage away, but Moore has spent his entire career seeing the opposition’s top corner.

For some, it might take a leap of faith to trust in Fields and his coaching staff, but that’s what it took for Jackson and Hurts as well. With DJ Moore on the field and ready to break out, the Bears' offense has “success story” written all over it. Don’t be left behind in fantasy football. Grab Moore while you can.


Why You Should Not Draft D.J. Moore in Fantasy Football

By Colby Conway

DJ Moore was a big part of the massive package that the Chicago Bears received in exchange with the Carolina Panthers for the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, which was used on Alabama quarterback Bryce Young. Of course, it takes Moore leaving for an above-average quarterback to come to Carolina. Go figure! However, after dealing with the likes of Cam Newton, Kyle Allen, Teddy Bridgewater, Sam Darnold, Baker Mayfield, and P.J. Walker in recent years in Carolina, he will get to play with Justin Fields in 2023, who is coming off his best statistical year of his young career.

Despite the quarterback carousel Moore had in Carolina, he was as steady as they come. His lack of touchdowns from 2019-2021 deflated his fantasy appeal, and while the touchdowns came last year, his 888 yards were his fewest in a season since his rookie campaign. Moore has 1,100+ yards in three of the last four seasons, which is quite impressive when you consider the quarterbacks throwing him the ball. He’s averaged 133.5 targets per season over the last four years.

However, the question here is can Moore get the same volume like he did in Carolina? Over the last four years, Carolina has attempted at least 457 passes in each season, with that 457 number in 2022 being the lowest during this four-year stretch. Moore commanded a massive 25.8 percent target share, but last year, the Bears attempted only 377 pass attempts as a team, and that same target share for Moore comes out to 97.3 targets. I expect Moore to surpass this number, but when looking at our projections here at Fantasy Alarm, I expect him to be closer to this 97.3 number than, let’s say, 135-140 targets.

Back in 2021, Darnell Mooney had 140 targets, leading the Bears, and providing some optimism for Moore’s volume in 2023. However, it was a different offensive system, and Andy Dalton had at least 35 pass attempts in five of his six starts that year. Fields had just three starts with 30+ pass attempts that year, and in his first year in Getsy’s system, he had exactly zero games with 30+ pass attempts! Last year, Cole Kmet led the way with 69 targets, and Mooney, limited by injuries, averaged about five targets per game, leading the receiver room.

We’ve seen it recently, where teams trade for a surefire WR1, and the passing game improves in Year 1. That certainly could be the case if Getsy feels comfortable with Fields’ development as a passer heading into his third year as a professional, and there have been reports here in camp that Fields is looking more confident as a passer. However, do we really expect Chicago to go away from their rushing attack that worked so well last year? They ranked dead last in pass attempts last year, so anything there would be an improvement, but this remains a run-heavy offense and I don’t expect that to change whatsoever.

He’s the WR23 off the boards since June 1, and it’s not that it’s necessarily a bad price for Moore, but he cannot be trusted as your team’s WR1, and with the likes of Calvin Ridley and Christian Watson being taken within eight to ten picks of him, it just doesn’t seem like the wisest investment with premium draft capital.

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