Bears Legend Sounds Off: ‘Eddie Jackson Is Playing Like a Clown’

Eddie Jackson

Getty Eddie Jackson of the Chicago Bears.

Dan Hampton was not pleased with what he saw from Chicago Bears starting safety Eddie Jackson in the team’s opening loss to the Green Bay Packers.

Hampton, who was part of the legendary Super Bowl-winning 1985 Bears defense, played on the defensive line for the Bears for 12 seasons, from 1979-1990. The Hall of Fame defensive tackle currently talks Bears once a week on WGN’s “Hamp & O’B” show, in which he co-hosts with former Bears defensive end Ed O’Bradovich.

After Chicago’s 38-20 trouncing at the hands of the Packers, Hampton didn’t like what he saw on either side of the ball, saving particularly pointed criticism for the Bears’ All-Pro safety.

Dan Hampton Blasts HITS Principle, Effort From Eddie Jackson

One play in particular Hampton referenced was an early one in which Jackson was beat by Packers second-year wide receiver Romeo Doubs for a first quarter touchdown.

Hampton also took aim at head coach Matt Eberflus’s ‘HITS’ principle, an acronym that is said to stand for for Hustle, Intensity, Takeaways and (playing) Smart, noting Jackson wasn’t checking all those boxes.

“Think about the ‘Hustle’ part of it,” Hampton said. “Eddie Jackson he’s playing like a clown. He’s not tackling, he’s blowing coverages in the end zone.”

“Eddie can’t play dead, period,” O’Bradovich replied.

“We talk about turnovers, hustle, intensity … you want to tell me this is a smart coaching staff?” Hampton asked. “Big picture: Did it look like the defense was prepared? … Obviously, the effort wasn’t there.”

Dan Hampton on Bears Loss: ‘This Film Reeks’

Hampton later doubled down on his criticism of Jackson with another example from Chicago’s loss to Green Bay.

“If Eddie Jackson starts next week … that tells me you must not be trying to win, because Eddie Jackson has become a clown out there,” Hampton said, before referring to a different play on Green Bay’s opening drive. “There was a play about five plays earlier in the drive when (Packers running back) Aaron Jones was running the ball, and Eddie Jackson did everything he could to avoid a collision and keep him from making the first down. But of course, Ol’ Bubblewrap Eddie, he had to jump out of the way, and, of course, Aaron Jones got the first down and the drive continued.”

Jackson finished the game with four tackles and a pass breakup, but he wasn’t the only player Hampton called out, as the Bears legend expressed extreme disappointment with the effort he saw from several players, including linebackers Tremaine Edmunds and T.J. Edwards.

“This film reeks,” Hampton added. “There was a lot of loafing.”

Those who follow the Bears know that loafing in particular is something Eberflus and his staff claim to hone in on. When the team watches film after every game, “loafs” are handed out to players who weren’t perceived by the staff to be giving 100% effort.

Things aren’t going to get any easier for the Bears, who face a surprising 1-0 Tampa Bay Buccaneers team next week before heading to Kansas City to play the Chiefs Week 3. Perhaps rust and opening day jitters contributed to Chicago’s lackluster performance coming out of the gate. Regardless, the Bears need to shake it off quickly if they don’t want to fall into a 0-3 hole.

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