Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Poles made a big splash even before the free-agency negotiating window opens Monday.

Poles on Friday agreed to trade the No. 1 pick to the Carolina Panthers in exchange for pick Nos. 9 and 61 this year, a first-rounder in 2024, a second-rounder in 2025 and wide receiver D.J. Moore.

As Poles prepares to make more big moves to the bolster the roster this week in free agency, the Tribune’s team of Bears writers addressed five key topics.

1. The Bears’ trade with the Panthers was _______.

Brad Biggs: A needed step by Poles to see the process through with Justin Fields.

The quarterback didn’t have nearly enough talent around him in his second season, and now the franchise is on the way toward changing that. Getting D.J. Moore in the return from the Panthers makes him instantly the best wide receiver on the roster, filling a huge need when considering there isn’t a better option available in free agency.

The deal provides Poles with a little more flexibility, getting four total picks — first- and-second rounders this year, a first-round pick in 2024 and a second-round pick in 2025 — in exchange for the No. 1 pick. Importantly, he received a plug-and-play veteran in the deal, not additional lottery tickets. The Bears now own four picks in the top 100 — Nos. 9, 53, 61 and 64. With two picks at the end of Round 2 and the top pick in Round 3, Poles has the chance to move around if he would like. The Bears still have a slew of roster needs, and after the trade they’re positioned to have some extra swings with high draft picks, selections Poles hopes will turn into foundational pieces for his rebuild.

Colleen Kane: Potentially good for both sides.

Only time will tell whether that’s true. But the Panthers need a quarterback, and if they pick one that pans out, they’re likely not going to regret spending the draft picks.

The Bears’ move back to No. 9 likely puts them out of reach of the top couple of defensive prospects, who certainly could have been needed game-changers. But the Bears still should be able to get an elite player in the top 10. And the additional second-round picks this year and in 2025 and first-rounder in 2024 will give Poles more chances to build up the roster the way he wants. Plus, Moore …read more

Source:: The Mercury News


Good return for trading No. 1 pick? What headline-grabbing move is next? 5 Chicago Bears questions before free agency.

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