When speaking at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Bears GM Ryan Pace said he believed Chicago was a destination for players. Turns out he might have been on to something.
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix said he received calls from other teams with higher offers. Chose to sign with Chicago for less money. #Bears
— Zack Pearson (@Zack_Pearson) March 15, 2019
An opportunity to reunite with former University of Alabama teammate Eddie Jackson, play on the league’s top-scoring defense, and the potential to win a Super Bowl ring while still in his prime was enough to lure Ha Ha Clinton-Dix to Chicago when he had more lucrative offers on the table from other teams.
Let it sink in, folks: the Bears are a team players want to go to because they believe it gives them a good chance at winning the Super Bowl. What a time to be alive.
Now that Clinton-Dix is on the good side of the Bears-Packers rivalry, let’s get to know a familiar face a little better.
Player, Age (in 2019), Position
Ha’Sean Treshon “Ha Ha” Clinton-Dix, 27, safety
- 1 year, $3.5 million
- Season stats: 16 games (16 starts), 3 interceptions, 6 passes defended, 2 forced fumbles (1 recovery), 1 sack, 93 tackles, 1 tackle-for-loss, 2 quarterback hits
From a statistical standpoint, Clinton-Dix was as steady, reliable, durable, and productive in 2018 as he was in his previous four seasons. He played all 16 games for the fifth consecutive season, racked up 90+ tackles for the third time in his career, and hauled in multiple interceptions for the fourth consecutive season.
Pro Football Focus’ analytics also suggested Clinton-Dix had a solid season. Clinton-Dix was PFF’s 17th highest-graded safety and owned the site’s 13th best coverage grade. And while Adrian Amos had a higher overall grade and a better coverage grade, PFF’s metrics suggest the drop-off isn’t all that steep.
- Career stats: 80 games (74 starts), 14 interceptions, 28 passes defended, 4 forced fumbles (2 recoveries), 5.5 sacks, 456 tackles, 8 tackles-for-loss, 8 quarterback hits
- Per 16 games: 3 interception, 6 passes defended, 92 tackles, 2 tackles for-loss, 2 quarterback hits.
- Notable career accomplishments: Pro Bowl (2016), NFC Defensive Player of the Week (Week 15, 2016), Second-team All-Pro (2016).
- Pro Football Focus grades: 67.4 (2014), 77.7 (2014), 70.1 (2016), 71.5 (2017), 79.3 (2018).
Clinton-Dix’s résumé is solid, to say the least. The statistical profile Clinton-Dix has put up over the years has him as a virtual lock for 3 interceptions and 90+ tackles. And as far as the advanced analytics are concerned, PFF has him with a grade in the 70s in each of his last four years. Tack on the fact Clinton-Dix hasn’t missed a game in his career and there is a lot to like about the newest member of the Bears’ secondary.
Yep. That’ll do.
Ha Ha Clinton-Dix hasn’t missed a game in his five-year NFL career and played on 99 percent of the Packers’ defensive snaps in each year between 2015 and 2017. Impressive.
— PFF CHI Bears (@PFF_Bears) March 14, 2019
Teaming Clinton-Dix with Jackson as the two deep safeties means opposing quarterbacks have to be on point with their throws because those two ballhawks can cover a lot of ground and close passing windows quickly.
Even though we don’t know exactly what Defensive Coordinator Chuck Pagano will want to do with this defense, the vibe is that the “strong” and “free” safeties are going to be interchangeable. That makes sense because offensive players are so skilled and multi-faceted these days that it’s necessary that the “in-the-box” safety can match that athleticism, jump into coverage depending on what the offense shows. And if that’s the case, it’s good that both starters have plus range.
In the end, I think we might be in for an adjustment when it comes to what to expect from the “strong” safety in this defense. And with Clinton-Dix in tow, I’m excited to see what possibilities lie ahead.
Eddie Jackson on Ha Ha Clinton-Dix from August 2017: "Ha Ha is one of those guys, he’s going to keep pushing. he’s going to stay on top of you. but he’s going to do it from a brotherly standpoint, not a coach standpoint."
— JJ Stankevitz (@JJStankevitz) March 14, 2019