Mooney’s Arrow Points Up, Rodgers’ Dark Room, Woods is Free, Alternate WR Plans, and Other Bears Bullets

We’re under triple digits, folks. There are just 99 days until I get to see Taylor Swift at Soldier Field this summer.

Hey now! Justin Fields isn’t the only primetime performer I enjoy seeing show out on the lakefront.

  • Sighs. Somehow … Palpatine Aaron Rodgers returned from the darkness:
  • As someone who had friends and mentors in the industry, the life of an investigative reporter is unlike anything I could imagine. But even with my imagination, I can’t wrap my mind around being an investigative reporter around this Rodgers story. It’s unlike anything my brain can comprehend. Then again, that’s fitting for the dark energy that surrounds Rodgers.
  • There is no immediate word if the groundhog Rodgers saw his shadow or if we’re stuck with six more weeks of winter being inundated with will he or won’t he rumors.
  • Rodgers returning to Green Bay is the belief of just one Packers source who relayed that feeling to ESPN’s Jeff Darlington. On the one hand, it is tough for me to type out the words “this could be the best outcome for Bears fans” without feeling like I’m spitting into the wind. But on the other hand, Rodgers turning Green Bay into a circus as his production declines while his salary handcuffs the Packers would be fun to follow. Not to mention all of those things conspiring to sink That Team in Wisconsin would be a best-case scenario. Just saying … sometimes the bad things can be good.
  • OK, I’ve had enough Rodgers chatter for one morning. How about a palate cleanser?
  • This early-season wow moment was at the beginning of a strong stretch of games for Mooney after a slow start. Mooney went from catching four passes for 27 yards in his first three games to grabbing 36 passes for 466 yards and scoring two touchdowns in his next eight games. Mooney could’ve rounded out a solid year had it not been for a season-ending injury. But that he was turning it around is reason enough to believe in a bounce-back year being on the horizon in 2023.
  • In Brad Biggs’ latest mailbag at the Tribune, he serves up a reminder that the Bears don’t necessarily need a WR1 or five all-world offensive linemen to have a better passing game in 2023 than they did in 2022. All you have to do is look at what the New York Giants did with Daniel Jones and a collection of pass-catchers who aren’t known game-breakers or linemen who aren’t necessarily Canton-bound:
  • (T)he Giants certainly squeezed a good deal of production out of a poor group of wide receivers. That is a credit to position coach Mike Groh, a former Bears assistant. He did a really nice job with Isaiah Hodgins, Richie James and a cast of others. You could make a case you would rather have players such as Chase Claypool and Darnell Mooney. The Giants did a solid job offensively for quarterback Daniel Jones and no doubt have issues to fix on the line. O-line rankings are really difficult to follow too closely. Yes, the Bears’ rankings are generally much higher than anyone who watched them regularly would agree with. I would say their passing offense was a mess all the way around, quarterback included, and that’s an area in which they need to improve in 2023.

  • When you see it put in this way, it is also a reminder of how the Bears underperformed in 2022. Some of it was due to quarterback play. Fields wasn’t always the most accurate. And he wasn’t always making the best decisions with his throws. But there were plenty of reasons why the passing game wasn’t deserving of a passing grade. It truly was an all-around mess. And it was different things at different times. Ideally, a full offseason in the offense, a well-rounded out roster, and internal improvements from returning players gets this thing going in the right direction.
  • Maybe what the Bears really need is a receivers room that has a high floor. A group of pass catchers that has depth, ability, and room for growth. Would I like a receivers room with six All-Pros? Absolutely. But there is more than just one way to build a receivers room. And if the Bears can’t snag a legit WR1, they better be ready to embrace alternative paths to creating a cromulent group. Otherwise, we’re in for another offseason of trying to get a grip on who JF1 is because of a failure in team building.
  • With that being said, I’m still curious if the Bears will show interest (again) in Robert Woods. If you’ll recall, the Bears were among the teams who had an interest in trading for Woods before the Titans and Rams linked up on a deal. One year later — and a disappointing one from a production standpoint for the two-time 1,000-yard wideout — Woods returns to the market. But this time, it is as a free agent. And it looks like he is ready to enjoy this part of his journey:
  • *Pulls back the curtain* I don’t plan on doing this for every receiver who makes it to free agency. But when the Bears (1) have a need and (2) were recently connected to the player, then I think it’s worth bringing up for discussion. And sometimes, it is good to just have a discourse about possibilities. Isn’t that what it is all about when you gather around the football hot stove?
  • Some notable countdowns you should want to keep tabs on right now:
  • The NFL really doesn’t stop, does it?
  • This is where the fun begins (with Patrick’s NFL offseason previews):
  • Patrick Kane did some double-dipping on Wednesday night in another Blackhawks win:
  • The kids are on the rise:
  • I can’t believe this is still an option for the Bulls:
  • written by

    Luis C. Medina, who you can find on Twitter at lcm1986, has been covering the Chicago Bears at Bleacher Nation since 2017. Since then, he has written about 3 head coaches, 5 play-callers, and 11 starting quarterbacks. Previously, Luis wrote about the Cubs and MLB at BN (2015-16) and worked in the Chicago Tribune sports department (2011-16). He also co-hosted a Cubs postgame show, Outside the Ivy, in 2019.

    more bears news

    Kmet, Pace, Cunningham, Poles, Bagent, and Other Bears Bullets

    A brief and random collection of scatter-brained Bears thoughts for your Saturday morning because my head is all over the place. I still can't believe the Atlanta Falcons turned down a fourth-round pick from the Bears to move back one...

    Here We Go Again: Aurora Wants to be the Next Home of Chicago Bears Football

    The latest in the Chicago Bears stadium watch has us looking outside of city limits for a possible landing spot for a stadium to be built later. In a recent op-ed in the Chicago Tribune co-authored by Aurora Mayor Richard...

    WATCH: New Behind the Scenes Footage of NFL Draft Night Shows How Close We Were to a Bears-Falcons Trade

    On Night 1 of the 2024 NFL Draft, Chicago Bears General Manager Ryan Poles told the story of how Assistant General Manager Ian Cunningham kept him from making a trade-up he might've regretted. And now, we know how close the...

    Jayden Daniels Becomes the Latest Rookie QB to Sign His Rookie Deal

    Two of the top three picks in the 2024 NFL Draft have signed their rookie contracts. Sorry, Chicago Bears quarterback Caleb Williams is not one of them — yet. Jayden Daniels, the No. 2 pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, has...

    Adding Aurora to the List of Cities Wanting to be the Bears’ Next Home

    The Chicago Bears continue receiving interest from municipalities outside of city limits wanting to be the team's next hometown. With talks regarding an Arlington Heights move stalling, we've seen Naperville and Waukegan throw their respective hats in the ring as...

    Gervon Dexter Sr. is Ripping a Page Out of Caleb Williams’ Playbook

    In a must-read story by Gabby Hajduk at the Bears' website, there is an image share of Gervon Dexter Sr.'s Lock Screen, which is a screen shot of the Notes app titled 2024 goals. Immediately, my brain went to place...

    Tom Brady is Keeping an Eye on Caleb Williams

    Caleb Williams wants to be the greatest of all-time. So ... what does The G.O.A.T. have to say about that? In a conversation on NFL Network, Tom Brady has quite the takeaway as he discusses Caleb Williams' goal of winning...

    Takeaways Before the Break, No Campbell, NFL Punishment Scale is Whack, and Other Bears Bullets

    The first Friday of Bears summer break is here. Let's quickly dive into Bullets so we can enjoy more of our Friday. Kevin Fishbain (The Athletic) has some takeaways as the Bears say toodles to OTAs and minicamps and jet...

    Around the NFL: New Kickoff Rules Will be in Madden 25, Netflix’s Receiver Trailer, Falcons Dinged, More

    NFL Notes — The new NFL kickoff rules have front offices and coaching staffs rethinking how they approach kickoffs this season. From adding additional return personnel to reimagining personnel usage on the actual kickoffs, the gears are turning. How EA...

    Trevor Lawrence Gets a Gigantic New Contract From the Jaguars

    Trevor Lawrence, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, just got PAID. Handsomely, too. NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport has the scoop on the Jacksonville Jaguars backing up the cash truck to keep their starting quarterback around...

    Latest News

    Dodgers vs. Royals Prediction: Expert Picks, Odds, Stats & Best Bets – Saturday, June 15, 2024

    Shohei Ohtani, batting .309 this season, leads the Los Angeles Dodgers (43-28) into a matchup with one of the league's other top hitters, Bobby Witt Jr. (.325 AVG) and the Kansas City Royals (40-31). Ohtani and the Dodgers are -218...

    Pirates vs. Rockies Prediction: Expert Picks, Odds, Stats & Best Bets – Saturday, June 15, 2024

    Bryan Reynolds (12 games) will look to add to his hitting streak when the Pittsburgh Pirates (33-36) and Colorado Rockies (24-45) meet Saturday at 9:10 PM ET, live on COLR from Coors Field. Reynolds and the Pirates are favored by...

    Saturday’s WNBA Picks and Predictions – June 15

    Today's WNBA schedule has lots in store. Among those two games is the New York Liberty playing the Las Vegas Aces.Keep reading and you'll find WNBA best bets for the contests on today's slate.WNBA picks todayNew York Liberty at Las...

    Diamondbacks vs. White Sox Probable Starting Pitchers – June 15

    The Arizona Diamondbacks (34-36) play at home against the Chicago White Sox (18-53) on Saturday. The matchup is set to begin at 10:10 PM ET.The Diamondbacks will give the nod to Scott McGough (1-3, 5.85 ERA), who is eyeing win...

    Dodgers vs. Royals Probable Starting Pitchers – June 15

    The Kansas City Royals (40-31) visit the Los Angeles Dodgers (43-28) for a road game in Los Angeles on Saturday. The game begins at 9:10 PM ET.The Dodgers will give the nod to Yoshinobu Yamamoto (6-2) against the Royals and...

    Pirates vs. Rockies Probable Starting Pitchers – June 15

    The Pittsburgh Pirates (33-36) face the Colorado Rockies (24-45) in Denver at 9:10 PM ET on Saturday.The Pirates will give the nod to Jared Jones (4-5, 3.27 ERA), who is eyeing win No. 5 on the season, and the Rockies...

    Chicago Cubs Lineup: PCA Back in Center with the Wind Blowing Out

    CUBS LINEUP — The Cubs are now a season-low four games under .500 and a season-high 7.5 games out of first place. And it's mid-June. If the turnaround doesn't happen soon, it's probably not going to happen at all. But...

    Mariners vs. Rangers Prediction: Expert Picks, Odds, Stats & Best Bets – Saturday, June 15, 2024

    The Seattle Mariners (41-31) are favorites (-142) on the moneyline when they square off against the Texas Rangers (33-36) Saturday at 7:15 PM ET, live on FOX.Seattle's George Kirby gets the start, and he'll go against Texas' Nathan Eovaldi.Mariners vs....

    Yankees vs. Red Sox Prediction: Expert Picks, Odds, Stats & Best Bets – Saturday, June 15, 2024

    Carlos Rodon will take the mound for the New York Yankees (50-22) Saturday looking for his 10th win of the season in a matchup with the Boston Red Sox (35-35). The Yankees are -173 favorites to pick up the win...

    Kmet, Pace, Cunningham, Poles, Bagent, and Other Bears Bullets

    A brief and random collection of scatter-brained Bears thoughts for your Saturday morning because my head is all over the place. I still can't believe the Atlanta Falcons turned down a fourth-round pick from the Bears to move back one...

    more bears news