Bears

Bears Season in Review: Eddie Jackson

Bears Season in Review: Eddie Jackson

Bears safety Eddie Jackson didn't enjoy the kind of remarkable season in 2019 that he had in 2018, but he still played at a high enough level to be picked for the NFC's Pro Bowl squad and remains widely considered one of the best young defensive playmakers in the game.

He was paid like one this offseason, too, when GM Ryan Pace inked Jackson to a four-year, $58 million extension making him the highest-paid safety in NFL history.

Jackson finished 2019 with 60 tackles, two interceptions and a forced fumble but was blanked in the touchdown column after scoring three in 2018. His Pro Football Focus grade dropped significantly in 2019 to 66.9, the lowest of his three-year career and a far cry from the elite 93.2 he scored in 2018.

RELATED: Top 30 Free Agents of the 2020 NFL Offseason

Jackson's regression was just another example of an overall down year for a Bears team that has too much talent to be an 8-8 club. He didn't bring the same magic to the secondary that Bears fans have become accustomed to seeing, but now that he's been paid like one of the best players in the NFL, you can bet he'll be motivated to play at that level next fall.

It'll be interesting to see who lines up next to Jackson come Week 1. Ha Ha Clinton-Dix is scheduled to hit unrestricted free agency and it's highly unlikely Chicago will pay two safeties at the top of the position's market. After playing his whole career with Adrian Amos and Clinton-Dix, Jackson could be headed for a 2020 season paired with an underachieving veteran or unheralded rookie. He'll have to up his game.

Fortunately, the Bears don't have to worry about losing Jackson anytime soon. Even if 2018 was his career-year, Jackson's overall skill-set will keep him in the top-tier of safeties for as long as he's healthy and in his prime. 

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Pro Football Focus predicts Colts TE Eric Ebron to Bears

Pro Football Focus predicts Colts TE Eric Ebron to Bears

Now that Greg Olsen is spoken for by the Seahawks, the Bears must continue their search for an upgrade at tight end. Pro Football Focus has released their predictions for the top 50 free agents this off-season and they suspect the Bears will sign former Colts' TE Eric Ebron.

The argument put forward by PFF is solid. With both Trey Burton and Adam Shaheen underperforming in 2019, the Bears are desperate for anyone with experience at TE. Enter Ebron, who has been a consistent receiver putting up grades between 69.4 and 71.4 over the past four years of his career. During his first season in Indianapolis in 2018, Ebron scored 14 touchdowns. His 2019 season was cut short due to an ankle injury, with him scoring three touchdowns and 31 catches in 11 games. Consistency has been the biggest issue for the Bears offense, making Ebron an attractive prospect for Chicago. 

PPF projects the Bears will sign him to a 3-year, $7.5 million per year contract ($14 million guaranteed).

This isn’t the first time the 2018 Pro-Bowler has been connected to the Bears. Eagle-eyed fans caught Ebron interacting with Akiem Hicks and Tarik Cohen on Twitter earlier this year, with many speculating the current Bears’ players were encouraging Ebron to join them at Soldier Field in 2020. 

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SportsTalk Live Podcast: Is Teddy Bridgewater too expensive for the Bears?

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USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Is Teddy Bridgewater too expensive for the Bears?

Laurence Holmes, JJ Stankevitz and Mark Grote join Kap on the panel.

0:00 - The pressure continues to mount on Rob Manfred as the Astros scandal lingers. He apologized on Tuesday but should that be enough for him to keep his job?

17:00 - Drew Brees is heading back to New Orleans, so Teddy Bridgewater will be looking for a new home. The guys discuss if he'll be too expensive for the Bears. if he is, who could come to Chicago to join Mitch in the QB room at Halas Hall?

Listen here or in the embedded player below.

Sports Talk Live Podcast

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