Chicago Bears Fantasy Football: Darnell Mooney preview and outlook

Chicago Bears (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Bears, Darnell Mooney
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Chicago Bears Darnell Mooney: 2021 fantasy preview

The differences between Andy Dalton and Justin Fields may indeed have an impact on the ceiling of Darnell Mooney. When Andy Dalton stepped in for an injured Dak Prescott for the Cowboys, his conservative approach (6.9 average depth of throw) does not scream upside for Darnell Mooney but I do trust Dalton to hit his receivers more consistently than the Trubisky-Foles duo from 2020.

Justin Fields profiles as a super explosive and athletic QB, with a big arm. Seeing what Justin Fields did against Clemson this past season, some of those big throws for touchdowns are right up Mooney’s skill-set alley.

The ceiling will be raised for Darnell Mooney when Justin Fields takes the season, due to the rookie’s ability to throw the ball deep, which is Mooney’s true profile as a vertical threat. With Mooney being one of the most targeted players deep in 2020 as discussed, a QB who can create attention with mobility and actually hit those throws will be great for fantasy football.

Looking for some ADP (average draft position) steals can be huge for fantasy football since the position is so deep. There are players from last year that would be great examples of players who smoked their ADP, when looking at where they were drafted vs. where they finished. Here are some great examples:

  • Brandin Cooks: ADP WR34 vs. finished WR17
  • Diontae Johnson: ADP WR37 vs, finished WR21
  • CeeDee Lamb: ADP WR38 vs. finished WR22
  • Curtis Samuel: ADP WR64 vs. finished WR24
  • Robby Anderson: ADP WR65 vs. finished WR19

Darnell Mooney is being drafted exactly where he finished last season, as the WR50 for fantasy football when analyzing current ADP. The WR position is extremely competitive in terms of who finishes where for fantasy, but I fully expect that Mooney is targeted over 100 times in 2021 and has better efficiency due to improved QB play.

Improved efficiency should lead to more receiving yards, more singular big plays and more touchdowns which are all important fantasy football metrics. The additions of Marquise Goodwin, Damiere Byrd and rookie Dazz Newsome this off-season should not prevent any of these bumps.

The discussed players listed above were brought up because this can be the same sort of outcome for Darnell Mooney if the targets are consistent and his vertical ability is utilized effectively. ranks Mooney as WR39 for the coming season, which would be a jump for what his WR50 ADP currently has him as.

If Justin Fields is named the QB early on, expect to see a difference in where Mooney is being drafted for fantasy football. I believe due to his role on the Bears and his opportunity for upside, Mooney can finish somewhere between WR34-40. This would make Mooney a solid FLEX play, potentially on a weekly basis depending on the format of the league.

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With his sophomore year in the NFL being one where Mooney can continue to polish off his skill-set and technique, the QB room is better and his role continues to be important for the Bears brings some excitement for the WR and what can be in 2021.