(670 The Score) With the NFL trade deadline looming, Bears general manager Ryan Poles is in an interesting position.
The Bears (3-4) are focused on developing a young roster and building for the future in their first season led by Poles and coach Matt Eberflus. With that in mind, there are sensible options to both sell and buy before the deadline at 3 p.m. CT next Tuesday.
The Bears made the latest move of their rebuild Wednesday by trading veteran pass rusher Robert Quinn to the Eagles in exchange for a fourth-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Quinn, 32, was a beloved figure for the Bears. He was voted the Brian Piccolo Award winner in 2021, was named the Jeff Dickerson Good Guy Award winner by the Chicago media and was voted a team captain this season. There was genuine sadness inside Halas Hall as news of his trade emerged.
But making difficult decisions with the Bears' long-term future in mind is Poles' job. After dealing Quinn to the Eagles, he should now also consider trade possibilities for running back David Montgomery and even linebacker Roquan Smith, who are both in the final years of their contracts.
On the other hand, Poles and the Bears also have the flexibility to search for new talent on the trade market as players are shopped by other teams. Here are three players who would fit the Bears and whom they could pursue.
Panthers WR D.J. Moore – 25 years old, 4 years remaining on contract
The Panthers started their rebuilding process by recently firing coach Matt Rhule and trading star running back Christian McCaffrey to the 49ers. Is Moore next on the trade block? While Carolina has maintained he won’t be dealt, that shouldn’t stop any teams from inquiring.
Moore would fit the Bears’ future and could bring instant impact for second-year quarterback Justin Fields. Moore has stacked three consecutive seasons of 1,100-plus yards and would immediately become Chicago's top wide receiver.
Moore has three seasons remaining on his contract after 2022. He isn't worth a first-round pick for the Bears, who will likely be selecting high in the 2023 draft. But Poles should at least explore the market on Moore and see if a deal is feasible at a lesser price.
Jets WR Elijah Moore – 22 years old, 3 years remaining on rookie deal
Moore wants out of New York, where he has been underutilized by the resurgent Jets this season. A second-round pick in 2021, Moore would become the Bears’ youngest wide receiver by two years and likely the most talented.
Moore had 43 receptions for 538 yards and five touchdowns during his 11-game rookie season, which was cut short due to a quad injury. He has 16 catches for 203 yards in six games this season. But after going without a target in the Jets' win against the Packers on Oct. 16, he became disgruntled and requested a trade.
If the price is reasonable, Moore makes a lot of sense for the Bears.
Dolphins TE Mike Gesicki – 27 years old, playing on franchise tag
As the Bears seek playmakers for their offense, a trade for Gesicki could make sense – if Poles is willing to award him the multi-year extension that he couldn’t land with the Dolphins.
Gesicki is playing out this season under the franchise tag at north of $10.9 million. He hoped to land a contract extension surpassing that of Browns tight end David Njoku, who signed a four-year deal worth $56.75 million in March. Gesicki instead was tendered the franchise tag and has 18 receptions and three touchdowns in seven games this season.
But Gesicki has showcased himself as a productive piece in the passing game during his first four NFL seasons and could be a key addition. If Poles believes there’s a long-term fit with the contract, he should make a call to Miami.
Chris Emma covers the Bears, Chicago’s sports scene and more for 670TheScore.com. Follow him on Twitter @CEmma670.