Adrian Amos

Bears happy for Adrian Amos, see ‘win-win’ in signing Ha Ha Clinton-Dix 

Bears happy for Adrian Amos, see ‘win-win’ in signing Ha Ha Clinton-Dix 

The Bears’ defense, in all likelihood, is in a healthy enough place where losing Adrian Amos won’t deal a serious blow to its chances of success in 2019. Replacing him with Ha Ha Clinton-Dix will help mitigate his loss, sure, but good teams are able to move on from good players and not be severely affected. 

That’s how the Bears are approaching Amos leaving for the Green Bay Packers on a four-year deal with $12 million guaranteed. They’re the team that drafted and developed Amos into a guy worthy of that contract — they just weren’t going to be the team to give it to him. 

“The first thing for Amos is it's almost one of those deals where you're proud,” general manager Ryan Pace said at the NFL Annual Meeting in Phoenix last month. “You know, you draft a guy where we drafted him (fifth round) and to see him grow as a player and the contract that he got, awesome for him.”

It might help Pace be proud of and happy for Amos, too, given the Bears could wind up with a 2020 compensatory draft pick for losing him to the Packers. The Bears haven’t had a comp pick since 2009. 

Additionally: Replacing Amos with Clinton-Dix on a cheap one-year deal — his cap hit in 2019 is $3.25 million, the 20th highest on the team, per Spotrac — sweetens the deal. It was clear Clinton-Dix wanted to play for the Bears, which stands as a benefit of the team’s best season in eight years. 

“We just felt like here’s a great opportunity for him coming to this defense and this city and this organization,” coach Matt Nagy said. “And it’s a great opportunity for us where it could fill a role at that spot — two guys that played together at Alabama, with Ha Ha and Eddie (Jackson) — and it could be a win-win situation.”

Nagy wasn’t the only one to call Clinton-Dix’s deal a “win-win” for all parties involved. Pace used that phrase, too: The Bears provide a good opportunity for Clinton-Dix to rebuild his value on the free agent market after a relatively disappointing 2018; in turn, the Bears are able to replace a solid starter with an inexpensive player who has some good traits and the right mindset entering 2019. 

“A lot of times if it gets to that point (where the agent and player) can say hey, I want another bite at the apple if I play well and sometimes it's financially advantageous for us too,” Pace said. “And hey let's just be honest, usually these one-year deals, they are very motivated and he has the right makeup and character to come in and play well. And he fits well into the defense and obviously the familiarity with Eddie Jackson, I think that helps a lot too.”

Clinton-Dix and Jackson go way back — Clinton-Dix hosted Jackson on his recruiting visit to Alabama — which could help mitigate the loss of Amos from a communication and trust perspective in the back end of the defense. Clinton-Dix and Jackson, too, have 22 interceptions in their seven combined NFL seasons. 

Amos going to Green Bay and Clinton-Dix going to Chicago may be a win-win for all parties, not just the Bears. The Packers added an assignment-sound, rock-solid player in the back end of a defense that needed those traits; the Bears were happy to see a former fifth-round pick develop into being the kind of guy deserving of the contract he got from the Packers, and then were pleased to replace him with a proven playmaker on a cheap one-year deal.

So while fans of each team will continue to argue about which of their former players is worse, in reality, both teams are pleased with how they addressed safety in free agency. Still, that the Amos-Clinton-Dix pseudo-swap happened will help ratchet up the intensity in the Bears-Packers rivalry ahead of Sept. 5’s centennial season opener at Soldier Field.

“It’s fun,” Nagy said. “It’ll be, I’m sure, a little bit of a storyline as we get into that Week 1 game. It’ll look funny seeing him that uniform. I’m sure it’ll look the same for the Packers fans with Ha Ha.”

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Former teammates, now rivals, Tarik Cohen, Adrian Amos exchange Bears-Packers trash talk on Twitter

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USA TODAY

Former teammates, now rivals, Tarik Cohen, Adrian Amos exchange Bears-Packers trash talk on Twitter

For the last two years Tarik Cohen and Adrian Amos were teammates on the Bears. Now the two are exchanging trash talk on Twitter about the Bears-Packers rivalry.

On Monday it was made official that the 2019 NFL season opener will be Packers at Bears on a Thursday night on Sept. 5. Cohen opened the sparring in the direction of Amos, who signed a $37 million deal with the Packers earlier this month.

Amos had fun in his response.

All kidding aside, Amos' return to Soldier Field as a member of the rival Packers will be one of the main storylines of the game. Cohen and other members of the Bears offense will surely be looking to make a play on their former teammate.

 

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‘Forever grateful’ Adrian Amos thanks Bears, city of Chicago in blog post

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USA TODAY

‘Forever grateful’ Adrian Amos thanks Bears, city of Chicago in blog post

Adrian Amos is well aware of how rare his success story is in the NFL. Not many fifth-round picks turn into four-year starters from day one, but his success earned him a four-year, $36 million contract from the Green Bay Packers.

The now-former Bears safety thanked the team and city that drafted him in a post on his official blog.

“First off, I want to thank the Bears, the city of Chicago, and the fans for an incredible four years,” Amos wrote. “I’m forever grateful to everyone for taking a chance on me. My time there was special and will forever be honored.”

He’s turned his full focus to his new team now, announcing a jersey number change for the division rival.

Evidently, he couldn’t get veteran Packers cornerback Tramon Williams to let him have No. 38, but maybe when the 36-year-old retires in the next few years, Amos will switch back to his old number.

In Chicago, he’ll be replaced by former Green Bay safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, and the two teams will soon see which side got the better deal in the pseudo-swap.