‘I Know It Was A Great Trade’: Chase Claypool Says Bears Will Be Happy With Big Investment In Him

The Pittsburgh Steelers are likely to hold the 33rd pick in the 2023 NFL Draft thanks to their decision just before the trade deadline to deal third-year wide receiver Chase Claypool, sending him to the Chicago Bears in exchange for a second-round draft pick.

While it’s proved to be a fine harvest for Pittsburgh, Claypool believes he will prove in time that it was well worth the Bears’ investment. He’ll have to prove that starting next year, however, as he has done very little thus far in the Windy City, catching 12 passes in five games for 111 yards, with a four-yard rush and a fumble.

‘‘We traded away a top second-round pick, very valuable. I smile because I know it was a great trade for the organization”, he told Patrick Finley of the Chicago Sun-Times, regarding the Bears’ investment. “I don’t want to get roasted for saying something too soon, like I have before. But I feel very confident the fans, the organization, the team will be happy”.

Himself a second-round pick out of Notre Dame in 2020, Claypool did come out like gangbusters, to his credit. He caught 62 passes as a rookie for 873 receiving yards and nine touchdowns, plus another two touchdowns rushing. He’s only scored three times since then. He did throw a touchdown to fullback Derek Watt before departing from Pittsburgh.

The veteran had already been connected to trade rumors, but it didn’t feel likely that he would be dealt barring an extraordinary offer. As with Martavis Bryant several years ago, they did decide to pull the trigger when that offer came in. according to reports, the Green Bay Packers also offered a second-round pick, but they opted to take the Bears’ offer because they believed it would be a higher pick.

Claypool is committed to proving himself a strong return on investment after Chicago paid such a high price for him. “No doubt, that adds to my motivation this offseason”, he said. “This offseason might be my biggest offseason yet. I’m real excited”.

It’s hard for those on the outside to get too excited about the Chicago Bears at the moment, however, particularly about the passing game. They rank dead last in passing with just 2048 passing yards as a team on the season, though they also have the fewest passing attempts.

Second-year quarterback Justin Fields, the 11th-overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, has gone 185-for-297 passing, throwing for 2,167 yards with 16 touchdowns to 10 interceptions. He’s also fumbled 15 times, after fumbling 12 times as a rookie. However, he has also rushed for 1,011 yards on 150 carries with eight rushing touchdowns though, he has been sacked 48 times for a loss of 314 combined yards.

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