Panthers WR D.J. Moore (hamstring) got in a limited practice on Wednesday. HC Matt Rhule said afterward that he expects Moore to play vs. the Bills this weekend. We'll keep an eye on him leading up to that one.
Bears WR D.J. Moore racked up 104 yards on 6 receptions in Sunday's loss to the Buccaneers. His 7 targets ranked second on the team and accounted for 24.1% of QB Justin Fields' total pass attempts. Moore also garnered 49.3% of Chicago's receiving yards. The Bears passed or took a sack (six of them) on 68.6% of offensive snaps, leaning that way even in the first half. We'll be curious to see if that split continues. The Bears' early tendency toward trailing opponents would certainly help to drive up passing volume. WR Chase Claypool led the team Sunday with 8 targets, catching three for 36 yards and Fields' lone passing TD. TE Cole Kmet finished with 6 targets, 4 receptions and 38 yards. Chicago heads to Kansas City in Week 3 before hosting the Broncos in Week 4.
Bears WR D.J. Moore struggled in his debut vs. the Packers, recording only 2 catches on as many targets for 25 yards. Teammate Darnell Mooney led the team with 7 targets, 4 catches, and 53 yards, along with a receiving TD. It’s bizarre that Moore saw such little volume, considering three different Bears (Mooney, TE Cole Kmet, RB Roschon Johnson) saw 7 targets in the Week 1 loss. Moore’s totals are even more puzzling when realizing that his new QB, Justin Fields, attempted 37 passes, two fewer than his career-high of 39 (2021 Week 15). Hopefully, the veteran can regroup in Week 2 vs. a Buccaneers defense that surrendered the second-most passing yards (344) in the NFL on Sunday. We'll chalk this one up to the occasional bad luck game for now.
The Bears agreed to a trade sending the number one overall pick in the 2023 draft to the Panthers in exchange for the ninth overall pick in 2023, the 61st pick in 2023, two future picks, and WR D.J. Moore. There's certainly a lot to take in here. GM Ryan Poles managing to swing a high-end WR in Moore to go with QB Justin Fields is a tremendous boost for the team's future. Any doubts surrounding Fields and his cast of receivers are gone, solidifying his status as a top-end dynasty QB. There's got to be bad news for someone here, though. Between this move and the deadline deal that brought WR Chase Claypool over from the Steelers, it's hard to imagine a ton of fantasy upside for WR Darnell Mooney in this offense now. TE Cole Kmet also loses some value now that he seems doomed to be stuck between third or fourth in the pecking order for targets. As far as the Panthers are concerned, this is a significant investment made into finally solving their QB woes. Going up to number one enables the franchise to put an end to exploring retread experiments as they tried with QBs Sam Darnold and Baker Mayfield. New HC Frank Reich will have his pick of a young signal-caller to build toward the future with. One of either Alabama QB Bryce Young or Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud feels like a natural fit to plug in right away to a pro-style offense. Unfortunately, without Moore in the mix, this Panthers' offense is devoid of weapons for whoever ends up under center. It's tough to say right now who, if anyone, emerges from this Panthers' offense as a fantasy contributor. Free agency and the NFL Draft in April will help color in those missing pieces of information. Keep up with our coverage here at Draft Sharks as the offseason continues to unfold.
The Panthers named Thomas Brown their new OC. The 36-year-old spent the past 3 seasons working under Sean McVay in Los Angeles, serving as RBs coach and then TEs coach. He bounced around the college ranks prior to that, with his only OC experience coming at Miami from 2016 to 2018. Those offenses finished just 54th, 60th and then 105th in total yards per game. The first 2 were pass-centric attacks, while the 3rd shifted toward the run. Brown will be working under offensive-minded HC Frank Reich in Carolina. We'll see who ends up calling the plays. There's a good chance that Brown is working with a rookie QB in 2023. The Panthers hold the 9th overall pick of this spring's draft and only have QBs Matt Corral and Jacob Eason on the roster currently.
The Panthers are hiring Frank Reich as their next HC, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Reich was fired by the Colts in November after getting off to a 3-5-1 start. But he went 37-28 across his first 4 seasons in Indianapolis, despite losing QB Andrew Luck just prior to the start of the 2019 campaign. Three of those 4 Colts teams finished top 9 in points; 2 of them ranked top 10 in total yards. Prior to arriving in Indianapolis, Reich spent 4 seasons as an OC -- 2 with the Chargers and 2 with the Eagles. Reich's offense was middling in his 1st season in both stops but improved to finish top 9 in yards in year 2. We'll see how Reich fills out his new staff, but this is a rock-solid hire for Carolina. The Panthers, of course, still need to find an answer at QB after cycling through Baker Mayfield, Sam Darnold and P.J. Walker this past season. Mayfield is now with the Rams, while neither Darnold nor Walker is currently signed for 2023.
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