Chicago Bears Observation No. 5: Carolina Panthers schadenfreude
For as frustrating as it has been at times to see the Bears scuffle their way to a 1-4 record, there is a silver lining every Sunday: the Carolina Panthers stink, and the worse they are, the better it is for the Bears. That's because not only did the Bears' trade with the Carolina Panthers net them D.J. Moore, but it also gave them the Panthers' first-round pick in 2024.
Next year's draft is brimming with five-star talent. USC's Caleb Williams is thought to be the crown jewel, but the quarterback class as a whole is very deep. North Carolina's Drake Maye, Texas' Quinn Ewers, Colorado's Shedeur Sanders, Oregon's Bo Nix, and LSU's Jayden Daniels are just some of the QBs thought to be worth a first-day pick.
The Panthers selected Alabama quarterback Bryce Young with the first-overall pick they received from the Bears this past year, but Young has struggled mightily, and the Panthers are the last remaining winless team in the NFL, which makes them the odds-on favorite to finish with the worst record in the league.
If the Bears were to secure the top pick in this draft from Carolina, it could go down as one of the most lopsided trade heists of all time. That pick, combined with their own, could land Chicago two franchise-altering players, turbo-charging the team's rebuild into a contender.
Should Justin Fields prove that he's the future of the franchise and the Bears decide they're not in the market for a quarterback, trading the #1 overall pick with a prospect of Williams' caliber available would have Ryan Poles swimming in a pool of draft picks like a Windy City Scrooge McDuck, and he could still scoop up potentially transcendent players like Ohio State receiver Marvin Harrison, Jr. or Penn State offensive tackle Olu Fashanu.
There's so much room to grow for this Bears team, but no matter how this season turns out, rooting against Carolina is one thing Bears fans can feel good about each week.