Can Bears’ DJ Moore Become Elite Fantasy Football Receiver?

With the Carolina Panthers acquiring the No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, DJ Moore is now a member of the Chicago Bears.

While Moore has yet to finish as a fantasy football WR1, it’s clear from watching him play that he’s got it. Last season was disappointing for Moore, ending his streak of three-straight 1000-yard seasons. It’s tough to blame him when the Panthers produced just the fourth-fewest passing yards on the fourth-fewest pass attempts. 


The bad news? The Bears produced the fewest in both of those categories.

The good news? Justin Fields could be the complete package. On paper, this trade is fantastic for Chicago; we’ve seen elite receivers elevate their quarterback’s play over the past few seasons. We saw prolific wide receivers such as Tyreek Hill, Davante Adams and A.J. Brown get traded in 2022. All three of those players lived up to the hype last season.

As it turns out, only the truly elite ones produce more fantasy points post-trade. Since 2012, Hill, Adams, Brown and Stefon Diggs were all top-10 at their position in fantasy. Those receivers are now the top four.

This raises a question: Is Moore an elite asset and can he become one? 

Before the trade, Moore had 10.6 fantasy points per game (in half-point per reception). Of the 20 receivers since 2012 who were traded while scoring 10.6 fantasy points or more, only the elite four mentioned above have out-produced their fantasy points per game. 

Moore is getting a querterback upgrade. Regardless of your opinion on Fields, he’s better than the slew of Baker Mayfield, Sam Darnold and PJ Walker

But does that matter? After all, Adams and Hill did not receive a quarterback upgrade. Ultimately, it looks like a wide receiver’s ability to elevate his performance depends on his peripherals. 

Adams, Brown, Diggs and Hill had the following in common before they were traded:

  • > 11.5 HPPR fantasy points per game (Moore had 10.6)
  • > 24% targets per route run (Moore had 23%)
  • > 69 receiving yards per game (Moore had 68)

Ultimately, Moore just misses the mark here.

If you’re a Bears fan, take solace in knowing Moore is special. The numbers I shared above are arbitrary. I absolutely expect Moore to take this offense to the next level. He fills a massive need for an already explosive offense.

If you’re a fantasy manager, 10.6 fantasy points per game are good. Moore as a WR2 is something I can get behind. His ADP on Underdog Fantasy sits at 43.8 (mid-4th, WR21), with 11.2 projected ppg. While that’s justifiable, I expect his ADP to climb higher as the season approaches, which isn’t something I can get behind. He likely won’t finish his first season in Chicago as an elite fantasy receiver.

Moore will be more valuable for the Bears than he’ll be for your fantasy team. I project him as a mid-late WR2, but yes, his upside is undeniable.

WATCH: Why Moore Isn’t an Elite WR

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