How the Chicago Bears wide receiver depth chart looks after the Dante Pettis signing

Chicago Bears, Dante Pettis
Chicago Bears, Dante Pettis / Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

On the first day that the Chicago Bears players report to Halas Hall for team workouts, Ryan Poles brings back a familiar face. Poles gives wide receiver Dante Pettis a one-year deal. The money has yet to be disclosed but I'd assume it falls close to what he received in 2022 - a little over $1 million. With the addition of Dante Pettis, some are wondering what the team's wide receiver depth chart looks like now. Let's take a look and see what the signing might mean for the offseason and beyond.

I think it's easy to say that D.J. Moore would be the WR1 on this roster. He is the only receiver of this group to truly prove himself despite never scoring double-digit touchdowns in a single season. This might be the year that changes as Justin Fields would arguably be the best quarterback he has played with in his career. Yes, I know he played with Cam Newton.

How the Chicago Bears depth chart will shake out at wide receiver

Behind Moore would be Chase Claypool and Darnell Mooney. You can flip-flop these two as the WR2 and WR3 and I wouldn't argue either way. These three are the guaranteed locks to remain on the roster unless a trade happens. I don't see a trade happening involving Claypool or Mooney though since Mooney's value is lower this offseason due to a down year and a season-ending injury. Why would Poles trade Claypool after giving up what became the 32nd overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft?

Behind these three are Equanimeous St. Brown and now Dante Pettis. Both of these receivers are on one-year deals and not a lock to make the final roster. That said, both do the dirty work that Luke Getsy likes from his wide receivers. Dante Pettis also adds value to the punt return game. He took over for Velus Jones, Jr. last season because Jones could not seem to hold onto the football. Speaking of Jones, I would not be surprised if he is cut this year. I don't think he's a lock just because he was a third-round pick last season. Sometimes you have to cut your losses and move on.

Also on the current roster are wide receivers, Nsimba Webster, Joe Reed and Daurice Fountain. Webster stuck around last season, but not positive he will this season. Reed and Fountain could end up on the practice squad. Reed was with the Chargers last season and Fountain was picked up by the Bears from the Chiefs in October.

Here is a look at how the depth chart looks at this point:

Locks at WR

  • D.J. Moore
  • Chase Claypool
  • Darnell Mooney

Likely to stick around at WR

  • Equanimeous St. Brown
  • Dante Pettis

On the bubble at WR

  • Velus Jones, Jr.
  • Nsimba Webster
  • Joe Reed
  • Daurice Fountain

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Now, in the grand scheme of things, I don't see the team keeping more than six receivers to start the 2023 NFL season. That is the number of wide receivers they kept on the roster to start last year, granted that included N'Keal Harry being on injured reserve. Seven would be the absolute max the team would keep. No matter if they choose to keep six or seven, signing Dante Pettis should not deter Ryan Poles and the Chicago Bears from drafting another receiver in the 2023 NFL Draft.