Chicago Bears

Chase Claypool among 20 players with most to lose, gain from 2023 NFL Draft

When the Chicago Bears traded for wide receiver Chase Claypool at the 2022 trade deadline, it appeared like a good decision by GM Ryan Poles. But after the former Pittsburgh Steeler totaled just 14 catches over the final seven games, questions arose about his long-term fit in Chicago.

Indeed, it’s unfair to pass judgment on Claypool after a midseason trade. He was thrust into one of the NFL’s most unproductive passing offenses. Expecting him to produce like a WR1 in an offense still figuring out its passing attack never made sense. But that doesn’t mean expectations won’t be high for the fourth-year wideout in 2023.

Chase Claypool is entering the final year of his rookie contract. He’ll set himself up for a big payday if he enjoys a productive 2023 season. The Chicago Bears will likely meet his contract demands if he plays well, too. Poles made the trade knowing a second contract was right around the corner. It’d be foolish to let Claypool walk if he turns into a 1,000-yard guy.

It would be equally foolish for the Bears to assume Claypool will become that guy. It’s why DJ Moore was such a critical acquisition in the trade with the Carolina Panthers. And it’s why adding a rookie from the 2023 NFL Draft would make sense.

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