5 Chicago Bears Who May Not Return with Shane Waldron as Offensive Coordinator

Chicago Bears, Justin Fields, Darnell Mooney
Chicago Bears, Justin Fields, Darnell Mooney / Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports
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Number 3: Wide Receiver Darnell Mooney

Sadly, Darnell Mooney appears to have played his final game for the Bears, a reality that would have been nearly impossible to foresee throughout previous seasons. In reality, Mooney had been Fields' premier deep-threat target before D.J. Moore's arrival, but the emergence of the team's true number-one receiver pushed Mooney to the backburner.

Chicago Bears, Darnell Mooney
Chicago Bears, Darnell Mooney / Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

The 2023 season was by far the least productive of Mooney's career, but when looking at his four years in Chicago as a whole, the receiver has only produced a 1,000-yard season once. Mooney is now entering free agency for the first time in his career, and a change of scenery might be best for both parties.

For Waldron and the Bears, Mooney's deep shot abilities may be less valuable than other traits such as physicality and route running, two things that the Tulane product is not necessarily known for. Mooney, on the other hand, could find a team with an offense that is better suited for his skill set and would likely be a bigger part of an offense next year. Mooney will hopefully be productive for years to come in the NFL, but his time with the Bears may have run its course.