Chicago Bears Position Insider: The Situation at Safety

CHICAGO, IL - NOVEMBER 27: Rishard Matthews
CHICAGO, IL - NOVEMBER 27: Rishard Matthews /

Training camp is about to start in just a few days, and the Bears will have several important position battles taking place. The safety position will be one of serious contention in camp.  With some new players, coupled with competition against guys from last season, it’s going to be interesting to see who ends on the roster when the dust settles.

Of all the positions in football of interest, I am interested in the safety position most.  It’s an undervalued position and is potentially one of the most important positions on any team.  A safety is, as the position’s name describes, a player that makes a last-ditch effort to stop a play before it gets behind the defense and turns into a big play.  A good safety can make a huge difference.  Look at guys like Eric Berry and the late Sean Taylor.  Both made huge impacts and are/were valuable defensive assets.

While the Bears may not have a Berry or a Taylor on the roster, they do have some guys that can make an impact.  The best of the bunch is Quintin Demps.  Even though he hasn’t been a Bear for long, having not even played a game for Chicago, he’s the most talented and experienced of the group.  The Bears need to have him step up and not only play well but be a leader in the secondary.  He should be able to do that.

Adrian Amos has been a mainstay at safety for the Bears since he was drafted back in 2015. But, he has been very inconsistent.  He doesn’t make a lot of big plays which is what a great safety should do.  But he does get in on quite a few plays.  The Bears liked his ability to hit and cover when he was in college and his first season in Chicago was a good one.  He is rated well and is consistent.  Still, he is not spectacular.

Chicago brought back someone who will be a liability at safety in Harold Jones-Quartey.  The Bears must like his ability to hit hard, and he has proven that he can deliver a big blow.  But one other thing he has proven is that he is a liability in pass coverage.  Jones-Quartey is rated poorly, but the Bears still keep him on the roster.  Will that change in training camp?  Personally, there is better talent out there, and the Bears could do better than him.

Another player who leaves people scratching their heads, because he is still on the roster, is Chris Prosinksi.  Perhaps he was kept because of his special teams ability, but there must be better talent out there.  He has been rated somewhere around average to poor with his ability and is another liability.  Why do the Bears keep bringing him back?

There is other, younger talent at the safety position on Chicago’s roster that needs to be considered.  Just before the start of training camp, the other safeties the Bears have on the roster include Deon Bush, DeAndre Houston-Carson, Rashaad Reynolds and this year’s only defensive draft pick, Eddie Jackson.

Bush saw some time as a starter last season but struggled.  But it was his first year in the NFL, so perhaps he should get a pass.  This season, he needs to step it up, but he won’t be a starter, at all, unless someone gets injured.  Houston-Carson played in eight games last season but didn’t do much.  He will have a shot at being a backup and but may have to make a mark on special teams to land a roster spot and back up at safety.

Chicago Bears
Chicago Bears /

Chicago Bears

Rashaad Reynolds is often listed as a cornerback, but some think he can play safety.  He is going to have to step it up, in training camp, to earn a roster spot.  If he can play safety, Chicago can use his help.

Perhaps the most interesting of these younger safeties is Eddie Jackson. Depending on who you talk to, Jackson is either a savior or a potential failure.  He comes in with a lengthy injury history, but he does have a lot of potential.  If he has a strong training camp, he might be able to win a starting spot.  Jackson has the ability, and he has the talent.  He just has to put it all together.

The safety position is going to be key during training camp and in the regular season.  Chicago needs to get stronger and better play out of that position to have a better defense.  Breakdowns defending against the pass and stopping the run caused them some serious problems last year.  These breakdowns helped them lose games.  If they can get consistent and effective play out of their safeties and eliminate the mistakes they made last year, they will win more games in 2017.

There is a lot of competition at the wide receiver position, and that may be the most watched position this summer.  But the safety position is almost equally important.  Keep a close eye on these guys as they will help make this defense strong and get the Bears in the win column more often in 2017.