According to one report, Chase Claypool was heading to the Packers before Bears’ GM Ryan Poles upped his offer to the Steelers. Chicago acquired the 6’4″ wide receiver for a second-round draft choice. It was initially reported that the Bears traded the pick acquired from the Raiders for Roquan Smith. That wasn’t the case.
As of 8am this morning I'm told "it was looking like Green Bay was potentially going to offer the best deal for Chase (Claypool)," per league source. Obviously the #Bears have swooped in and nabbed the #Steelers WR.
— JosinaAnderson (@JosinaAnderson) November 1, 2022
You’ve got to love a GM who knows how to attack his opponents. The Bears and Packers have matching 3-5 records, but, and I never thought I’d say this, Chicago is trending up. Green Bay has lost four straight games with Aaron Rodgers at quarterback for the first time since 2016. Rodgers has not lost five straight since 2008, his first year as a starter in the NFL.
In fact, the Packers are the only NFC North team not to make a move this season. To make matters worse, it appears Green Bay struck out in negotiations with the Patriots for their available wide receivers. Kendrick Bourne and Nelson Agholor have been mentioned as potential trade candidates. The Packers were interested in both according to The Fan 1250AM in Milwaukee.
The Bears may have overpaid for Claypool, but the trade makes a lot of sense. The third-year wide receiver immediately takes the pressure off of Darnell Mooney and gives the Bears an electric mix at the position when you include N’Keal Harry. The trade also slides Equanimeous St. Brown and Dante Pettis into the WR4 and WR5 slots, respectively. Mooney can work in the slot, and Byron Pringle can back him up once he returns.
Give me Claypool and Harry on the outside and put Mooney back in the slot where he can thrive against nickelbacks and safeties. Mooney is best suited for that role. https://t.co/yr1h8iKzPr
— Brad Robinson (@bradrobinson8) November 1, 2022
Bears’ GM Ryan Poles has attacked the trade deadline with the same ferocity he showed on Day 3 of the 2022 Draft. He worked the waiver wire the same way on cutdown day. It’s nice to see a Bears executive who has the patience to wait for the right deals. Pace has proved to be adept at moving aggressively at just the right time. Few analysts had the Bears and Steelers matching up on a Claypool trade.
Poles acquired a fourth-round pick from the Eagles for Robert Quinn, and then traded Roquan Smith to the Ravens for two more. The Bears are at a fortunate stage where they can improve this year while also stacking the deck for 2023 and beyond. Poles has over $120 million in salary cap for next year at his disposal and eight draft picks. The string of recent success by quarterback Justin Fields made acquiring Claypool a priority, and Poles picked off the Packers in doing so.
The Bears waived Isaiah Coulter to make room for Claypool on the 53-man roster. Coulter was on Chicago’s practice squad earlier this season.
David Montgomery, Eddie Jackson, and Teven Jenkins are staying put. Jackson is Chicago’s new defensive captain, replacing Smith. Montgomery is in the last year of his contract and has been splitting snaps with Khalil Herbert. Jenkins is Chicago’s best offensive lineman, but trade rumors have followed him since training camp.
You can also close the book on the Smith deal now, too. Chicago essentially received Claypool, linebacker A.J. Klein, and a fifth-round draft pick for the All-Pro linebacker after finalizing today’s deal. Claypool should see game action against the Dolphins on Sunday.