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Chicago Bears 2019 Position Battles: Big changes at safety

After looking at the corners earlier today, we’re going to finish up the defensive backs with a look at the safeties.

NFL: JUL 27 Bears Training Camp Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Chicago Bears will need to find a way to replace the man that was signed away by the Green Bay Packers to be the highest paid safety in the NFC North in 2019. The Packers are giving Adrian Amos $14.15 million of his $36 million contract this season making him the fourth highest paid safety in the entire league.

Roster Locks

The Bears will try to replace Amos’ production with the 34th highest paid safety in the NFL, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, who played a year ago for the Packers and Redskins. Clinton-Dix has had some on field issues the last two years, but how much of that was playing for a crappy team with no real direction? I wonder if he’ll be playing with any extra motivation now that he’s on a good team, playing alongside one of the the best safeties in the NFL, Eddie Jackson, and playing for his next contract on a one-year prove-it deal.

Jackson, who was First Team All-Pro last year, will be looking to continue his climb up the Bears record books in just his third professional season. His 5 defensive touchdowns is 4th all-time in Chicago history, but he has his sights set on a bigger goal. “I’m really excited for this year, it’s going to be something special,” Jackson said. “Like I said, I stand behind what I said earlier in the season” Jackson told SiriusXM NFL Radio. “We plan on taking this whole thing, we plan on winning the Super Bowl.”

While Ha Ha was rehabbing his knee on the PUP list, Deon Bush was getting the first team reps and he’s been making the most of the opportunity. Bush was frequently mentioned by the coaching staff a year ago, but he only managed to start two games on defense in the 2018 season. He did play nearly 60% of Chicago's snaps on special teams.

A good bet to make it

And when talking about special teams, we need to bring up one of the best in the league at the third phase, Sherrick McManis. This season the Bears are having McManis play safety, and I think it’s a good transition for the 31-year old.

On the bubble

A year ago the Bears only opened the year with four safeties on the 53-man roster, so these next few guys have their work cut out for them.

DeAndre Houston-Carson is another core special teamer, but he’s not as good a defensive player as McManis. From a cap standpoint, DHC makes far less ($770,000) than McManis ($1,987,500), so if it comes down to money the Bears could go with the younger Houston-Carson.

The Bears have a couple UDFAs in camp this year with Limestone’s Josh Simmons and Doyin Jibowu from Fort Hays State likely battling for a spot on the practice squad.