Can the Bears have Eddie Jackson be Eddie Jackson again?

Can the Bears have Eddie Jackson be Eddie Jackson again?

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The Extra Point: Can the Bears have Eddie Jackson be Eddie Jackson again?

The plan in Chicago is to have the former Crimson Tide standout focus again on the role that made him an All-Pro, free safety

If you're wondering what happened to Chicago Bears safety Eddie Jackson last season, you're not alone. 

After receiving a four-year $58.4-million contract extension, which made him the highest paid safety in the NFL, Jackson was in on a lot more tackles at the cost of a lot less production on the back end. 

That's where he had excelled the most during his first three seasons, when Jackson was named All-Pro and to two Pro Bowls. 

A significant part of it was the coaching staff deciding to move him up and play closer to the line of scrimmage. He wasn't roaming deep as much as a pure free safety.

Consequently, Jackson went from having 10 interceptions and returning three for touchdowns during those initial years, to zero in 2020. 

He did manage to have a return for a touchdown, but it was off a fumble (the third fumble return for a TD of his career). 

According to Bear Digest the plan is to have Jackson back where's more comfortable, playing more in the deep end. It doesn't hurt that safeties coach Sean Desai has also been promoted to defensive coordinator.  

Eddie Jackson by the Numbers

Career: 10 interceptions, 31 passes defended, six fumble recoveries, seven forced fumbles, six defensive touchdowns.

2020: Five pass defenses, career-high 82 tackles, 2 touchdowns allowed.

The number: 23. The number of times Chuck Pagano's defenses sent Jackson on a safety blitz in two seasons. Under Vic Fangio in 2018, Jackson blitzed once.

2021 projection: Three interceptions, one touchdown, 12 pass defenses, 63 tackles.

The Extra Point is a regular weekday feature on BamaCentral+, and often includes video and other elements from our FanNation parters. Other recent segments include:

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If you're wondering what happened to Chicago Bears safety Eddie Jackson last season, you're not alone. 

After receiving a four-year $58.4-million contract extension, which made him the highest paid safety in the NFL, Jackson was in on a lot more tackles at the cost of a lot less production on the back end. 

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