Allen Robinson or Darnell Mooney: Can we trust Bears WRs in fantasy?

    The Chicago Bears' passing game has been ugly this season. Can you start Allen Robinson or Darnell Mooney in fantasy for Week 7?

    The Chicago Bears’ passing game has been an abject disaster so far this season. The year began with Andy Dalton at quarterback before a knee injury forced the Bears to turn to their 2021 first-round draft pick, Justin Fields. While there have been some highlights, it hasn’t been the upgrade that fans were hoping for. It’s meant that Allen Robinson and Darnell Mooney have settled into fantasy football irrelevance.

    Chicago’s offense is averaging just 117.2 passing yards per game — comfortably the fewest in the league. Players can overcome a lack of yardage in fantasy football if a team is scoring touchdowns, but the Bears have found the end zone just 3 times through the air in the team’s first six games.

    Should I start Allen Robinson for fantasy in Week 7?

    Robinson has been a superstar since arriving in the NFL, despite playing in some terrible offenses. He has thrived under Blake Bortles, Chad Henne, Mitchell Trubisky, and Nick Foles. He was considered quarterback-proof. Unfortunately, those rumors have come to a definitive end. He’s averaging just 39 receiving yards per game, the lowest mark of his career.

    For a player drafted by many fantasy managers to be their WR1, he’s been a colossal disappointment. He’s the WR54 in standard scoring, sandwiched between Marquez Callaway and Quintez Cephus — and both of them have played one fewer game. In points per game, his closest comparisons are Kalif Raymond (who is outscoring him) and Quez Watkins (who is just behind).

    Better days are ahead for the Bears’ passing game. Fields will improve, and the offense will become more productive. There’s no guarantee that Robinson will be the primary beneficiary, though.

    Is Darnell Mooney the WR1 for the Bears?

    Mooney has outproduced Robinson so far this season in fantasy, although he’s been far from impressive himself. Mooney has 39 targets on the season (compared to 36 for Robinson). He’s caught 25 of those for 306 yards and a touchdown. He also has a better catch percentage and higher yards per reception than Robinson.

    The flashes are there. Mooney’s 5 receptions for 125 yards in a Week 4 victory over the Detroit Lions showed that. But it’s been incredibly inconsistent. He’s gone under 50 yards in four of his six games this season, and it’s tough to trust him.

    The Bears will need to be a pass-heavy offense

    The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are a tough matchup to evaluate. They’re allowing the 10th-most fantasy points to wide receivers in standard scoring, so it should provide a good opportunity for Robinson and Mooney. The Bears will have to throw the ball to keep pace with the Bucs’ prolific offense to stand any chance of winning.

    Injuries to Tampa’s defensive backs have led to a Jekyll-and-Hyde pass-coverage unit. The Bucs are seriously depleted at cornerback, but Jamel Dean has excelled in a starting role. Dean has allowed just 8 completions on 22 targets for 99 yards with 2 interceptions. The opposing QB rating when targeting Dean is a league-low 13.3.

    Dean hasn’t been following receivers in shadow coverage so far this season, but that could change. Fantasy managers will hope their receivers can produce in the snaps when they aren’t running routes against Dean. If he continues in the same vein, it will further reduce their chances of success.

    Neither Bears wide receiver can be started with confidence this week, but bye weeks are forcing fantasy managers to turn towards the waiver wire. Robinson is currently the WR24 in our Week 7 fantasy football wide receiver rankings. Mooney, meanwhile, is the fantasy WR34.

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