Ryan Poles pulled off a legitimate coup when he engineered the trade with Carolina for the #1 overall pick. Not only did he secure a 1st in 2024, but he also nabbed wide receiver D.J. Moore. Many feel the 26-year-old is one of the ten best at his position in the entire league. Putting him alongside Darnell Mooney and Chase Claypool would give Justin Fields a legitimate trio of weapons in the passing game. One would think the Chicago Bears no longer prioritize wide receivers at this point.
However, it’s never wise to assume anything with Poles. He’s made some unexpected decisions in the past. This may include the idea of taking a receiver high in the upcoming draft. The name to watch is Jaxon Smith-Ngjiba. He was a star in 2021 for Ohio State. Sadly his 2022 was undone by nagging injuries. He’s looked healthy this spring, showcasing his elite quickness and route-running skills. According to Ohio State beat writer Dan Hope, he has the Bears’ attention as they plan to meet with him privately in the coming days.
Chicago Bears may hatch one more surprise.
This could be Poles simply doing due diligence. He needs to make sure Ngjiba’s place on his board is set correctly. He doesn’t want to make the mistake of letting a potentially great player slip by because he was too lazy to do the legwork. That said, would the Bears dare take him at #9? It sounds crazy, especially after the Moore trade. Then again, young quarterbacks need all the help they can get. Teams would have a hard time accounting for so much firepower. Imagine Mooney and Moore with their speed on the outside and Njigba in the slot. Then you have Claypool with his versatility for good measure.
It’s a fun idea. The problem is that move does nothing for the Chicago Bears’ lingering issues on the offensive and defensive lines. Both need lots of help. Using a top 10 pick on one of them would make sense. Then again, it’s about taking the best players. If Poles is convinced Smith-Njiba is a future superstar, then he should take him. Nobody will care if the kid ends up a Pro Bowler.