Joniak: Bears' Eddie Jackson Helps Others Overcome Great Odds

Jeff Joniak
September 18, 2019 - 6:40 pm
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(WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The latest observations from Jeff Joniak at Halas Hall. 

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--At WBBM Newsradio’s first “Bears After Dark” event Tuesday night in Rosemont, Tom Thayer and I came away very impressed with All-Pro safety Eddie Jackson. His journey from Lauderdale Lakes, Florida to Alabama to the Bears as a fourth-round pick to an All-Pro in his second season is a “Road Taken." It is defining.

--He touched on the details, but in the end he is all about being a difference maker, not only on the field, but off helping young kids with his new “Remain to Reach Foundation” for juvenile kids and teenagers that come from rough backgrounds.

--You can read about his life before football and his emergence at Alabama in a story written by NFL.com reporter Jim Trotter back on August 6.  It is outstanding. 

--What we gathered Tuesday is that Jackson’s thirst and determination to win is deep. He admittedly had a hard time with losing 11 games as a 2017 rookie, after losing only three of his 38 games at Alabama. In fact, a healthy Jackson won his last 20 games played in college. 

--He found the Bears locker room to be too accepting of their fate. That 2017 draft class made it clear that kind of attitude would no longer be acceptable. Jackson knows how to lead. He has the ear of players on both sides of the ball.

--Kicker Eddy Pineiro is thrilled to be in the spotlight. Embracing pressure is what head coach Matt Nagy is asking of this team. Pineiro is the NFC special teams player of the week after his heroic 53-yard game winner in Denver and his 10-point kicking day. 

--At the same time, Pineiro knows he needs to move on from the kick while taking from the experience and the moment that which will serve him well moving forward. If he continues to embrace the moment, it is one less thing to worry about for his teammates and Nagy. Time will tell.

--While the offense works to get itself repositioned and more productive, the defense must continue to do its thing. Inside linebacker Danny Trevathan nailed it: “We can only control what we can control. We know our job is to be the best defense on the field.”  It is the only way to go for a prideful unit poised to shut down the anemic Redskins run game Sunday.

--Allen Robinson is holding himself and the offense to a high standard. His big catch set up the game-winning field goal, but in the big picture, it is still just one play. “We have got to look at it from a whole perspective,” Robinson said. “I don’t think one play is going to drastically change anybody’s anything. We have to come in and stay tuned in to the game plan this week and try to get better.”

--Starting right guard Kyle Long believes the offense will rise. “We’ve got to get back to the basics,” Long said. “It’s one thing Harry (Hiestand) always preaches. When things get a little out of whack, get back to the basics. When we use our basics, not a lot of people on earth can beat us.” Long said the unit just needs to be patient in games.

--Best characterization of the week three matchup with the Redskins delivered by Trevathan: “This is a get-back-on-track game for them and this is a get-back-on-track game for us.”  

Jeff Joniak is the play-by-play announcer for the Bears broadcasts on WBBM Newsradio 780 & 105.9 FM. Follow him on Twitter @JeffJoniak.