Another casualty of the 2018 season for the Chicago Bears was the loss of former All-Pro strong safety Adrian Amos to division rival Green Bay in free agency. The deal itself was for four years, $36 million, and $12 million due at signing. This was a deal that the Bears simply could not afford. Ryan Pace went out and made another quality free agency signing by bringing in former Packer and Redskin strong safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix on a one-year “prove it” deal worth $3.5 million. Clinton-Dix, as many of you may know, terrorized the Bears over the years as a Packer and was traded to the Redskins midseason in 2018. Clinton-Dix has been a playmaker at every level, including the time he spent at the University of Alabama playing alongside current Bears free safety Eddie Jackson, who (in my opinion) is the best safety in the league.
Anyone who’s seen Ha Ha Clinton-Dix over the years knows that he is a hard-hitting safety who does not miss many tackles. Clinton-Dix has recorded over 60 solo tackles each of the last three seasons, finishing last season with 81 solo tackles. After watching more tape on Clinton-Dix you’ll find that he is always around the ball. A lot of his interceptions come from simply being in the right place at the right time. Clinton-Dix has recorded three or more interceptions in the last three seasons. He is elite at predicting which route is being run, and he’s definitely not afraid to jump that route and make a play on the ball. HaHa has a high football IQ and never gives up on a play, as he can be seen making multiple diving interceptions and plays on tipped balls that are reminiscent of Mike Brown roaming the defensive backfield in the early 2000s for the Bears.
Forced fumbles, interceptions, hard hits and pass breakups are all words that will be used in the same sentence with Ha Ha Clinton-Dix over the course of this season. The fact that we are putting him around so much talent on the defensive side of the ball only makes this acquisition better. I will also go out and say that we have the best starting safety group in the entire league. Jackson and Clinton-Dix played together in college, so they already have existing chemistry and know how to complement each other’s game. Clinton-Dix plays the game how a safety should, letting absolutely nothing behind him and smacking everything moving in front of him. As for this season, I do expect Clinton-Dix to provide similar, if not better, production than Amos. He has better ball skills and more range than Amos, so you can count on Clinton-Dix to be a playmaker and bring home a handful of turnovers this season. Another interesting tidbit about Clinton-Dix is that he has seven NFL Playoff games under his belt as well as two National Championship victories while at Alabama, so he has the experience and pedigree to play in the big moments that this Bears team will be in this season.
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