4 major observations from the Panthers bombshell move to No. 1 pick

(Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) Scott Fitterer
(Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) Scott Fitterer /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) D.J. Moore /

Carolina Panthers move forward without their best weapon

It didn’t take a genius to figure out that the Chicago Bears were looking for a player to go along with substantial draft compensation. Ryan Poles’ intent to get something sorted before free agency was the clearest sign a proven performer would be included, which turned out to be wide receiver D.J. Moore when the jaw-dropping news was confirmed.

Moore has done an incredible job since being drafted. Despite not having any stability at the quarterback position, the former first-round pick has three 1,000-yard receiving seasons under his belt and will now become Justin Fields’ primary target heading into Year 3 of the quarterback’s professional career.

This was not an easy decision for the Panthers, according to multiple reports. Moore is their best pass-catching weapon by a considerable margin and Carolina must address the wide receiver position as a matter of supreme urgency in free agency and the 2023 NFL Draft.

Perhaps even a trade for someone like DeAndre Hopkins, too.

As stated previously, finding capable wide receivers is much easier than landing a franchise quarterback. If Moore was the necessary sacrifice for a team that’s been starved of good play from their signal-caller since Cam Newton left, so be it.

Moore is going to thrive in Chicago, one suspects. But if the Panthers get themselves a long-term quarterback capable of leading them into playoff contention, it’s a small price to pay.

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