Matt Eberflus talks about Bears’ plans for Chase Claypool
The Chicago Bears traded away two defensive assets during the 2022 regular season. The Bears were mainly in the business of stripping assets for the now anticipated multi-year rebuild in Chicago before the trade deadline. However, general manager Ryan Poles offered the fanbase an offensive surprise when he traded the equivalent of a first-round pick for wide receiver Chase Claypool before the deadline. Head coach Matt Eberflus provided insight during the League Annual Meeting on the expectations for Claypool.
Claypool didn’t have a hot start for the Bears after the trade. He started in three of his seven games with the Bears last season. Claypool recorded 14 receptions for 140 yards. He caught no touchdowns for the Bears last season. Many fans were impatient with Claypool’s production after the trade.
According to Dan Wiederer and Colleen Kane with the Chicago Tribune, Eberflus explained why Claypool struggled in Luke Gety’s academic scheme last season. He said it was imperative for Claypool to understand the playbook to be helpful to the offense:
Eberflus said Tuesday “it’s a little bit unfair for him to come in (midseason) and learn the offense that way and be an expert at it…
Really for him, it’s just about learning exactly what we’re asking him to do, with the route running, with the motions,” Eberflus said. “Because we have a lot of motions to our offense and it’s an important piece for him to be able to be effective.”
Claypool’s honeymoon is over, if there ever was one
Eberflus knew Claypool had a steep learning curve last season. However, Eberflus expects Claypool to learn the offense this offseason so he can be effective for the Bears next season. Claypool and Darnell Mooney are both coming into contract seasons. We’ll see if either makes a good case for Poles to offer them an extension.
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