Darnell Mooney ascends to second WR in Chicago Bears win

Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) /

It took two games, but the Chicago Bears may have a new Wide Receiver Two

The ascension of Darnell Mooney has been exciting. If you have been reading our blog, you would know that we highlighted Mooney as a potential Taylor Gabriel replacement back before the NFL draft. Now that the Chicago bears have drafted him, the role is starting to come to fruition.

While we assumed that no offseason for a rookie would mean a slow start, Darnell Mooney has had anything but that.

Mooney has been targeted six times this year, hauling in all six passes. He has 74 receiving yards, and a touchdown. Not a bad start for the young rookie.

What is even more impressive is how quickly he ascended up the depth chart. In week one, he was behind Anthony Miller, Ted Ginn and even Javon Wims on the pecking order.

On Sunday, he was second amongst wide receivers in snaps. Yes, that means more than Anthony Miller, who many assumed was the number two wide receiver.

This has essentially turned into plug and play when it comes to replacing Gabriel. Gabriel has jumped out, and Mooney is slowly but surely taking all of the snaps from Gabriel last year.

Next. Finding NFL comparisons for Darnell Mooney. dark

After a performance with a touchdown, and a few key downfield blocks, the idea would be that Mooney will only see more snaps week three, not less. With that in mind, the cat seems to be out of the bag and it will be hard to put Mooney back in.

Looking at how Mooney has produced compared to Gabriel through two weeks, it is almost as if the Bears did not lose anything.

Rece Rece Rece Rk Player Rec Yds TD 1 Taylor Gabriel 3.8 41.6 0.2 2 Darnell Mooney 3.0 37.0 0.5

Provided by Pro-Football-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 9/21/2020.

Expect Mooney to stay in the Gabriel and continue to be the Chicago Bears second outside receiver. This will keep Anthony Miller in the slot, and keep the Bears offense looking similar to what Matt Nagy had envisioned when he signed Gabriel.