Bears' Trade Acquisition to Debut in Limited Capacity Sunday

The Chicago Bears made one of the trade deadline's most aggressive moves when they traded a second-round pick for Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool, and they won't wait long to evaluate his fit. Head coach Matt Eberflus revealed that Claypool will play a meaningful role in the team's Week 9 matchup with the Miami Dolphins With the Bears 3-5 in a tough NFC North, they can't really afford to take their time with Claypool. If they're going to have a chance at the playoffs right away, they'll need the wide receiver to contribute right away. Nothing will help him build chemistry with quarterback Justin Fields but reps.

At the peak of his powers, Claypool was an overwhelming, athletically gifted pass catcher who could also pitch in the occasional run. Over his first two seasons, he totalled 1733 receiving yards, 112 rushing yards, and 13 touchdowns for the Steelers. His efficiency has certainly declined this year, falling from 12.7 yards per touch in his first 31 appearances to 9.2 this season, but part of that could be due to the persistent struggles of the Steelers offense. The team ranks 32nd in points scored and 28th in yards gained.

Claypool initially joined the Steelers as the 49th overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft after an impressive four years at Notre Dame. Gifted with incredibly tantalizing physical tools, the wide receiver has been a bit more name than game to this point in his NFL career. Given his modest production and the fact that he will hit unrestricted free agency following the 2023 season, the Steelers did well to land as much trade compensation as they did.
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