Antrel Rolle was almost 10 ½ when Adrian Amos was born.
That makes Rolle, 33 in December, feel old. But at the same time, it doesn’t.
“He keeps me young,” Rolle said.
The Bears’ previous two safety tandems aged their fans quickly.
No moment did so more notoriously — think the “He chose poorly” scene in the third Indiana Jones movie — than Aaron Rodgers’ last-minute, 48-yard touchdown pass to Randall Cobb to crush the Bears’ 2013 playoff hopes.
Those victims, Chris Conte and Major Wright, went where former Bears go — to Tampa Bay with Lovie Smith. Ryan Mundy, who teamed with Conte last year, is lost for the season with a hip injury.
That leaves two newcomers — the three-time former Pro Bowler and the rookie from Penn State — starting against the Packers in Sunday’s opener.
“He knows a lot of football, been playing for a long time and has had success a long time,” said Amos, a fifth-round pick. “I just try to gain that knowledge and use what I do well.”
They’re developing a relationship they hope extends to the field, where one miscommunication leads to points.
Share Events on The Cube“We definitely have to have that chemistry, where when we look at each other we know what we’re thinking,” Rolle said. “It comes with practice.
“It comes with film studying. It comes with meeting time. It comes with just hanging off the field and getting to know him as a person.”
They won’t know the extent of it, for sure, until Rodgers stares them down Sunday.
The same man threw for 635 yards and 10 touchdowns against the Bears last year.
“I think he’s excited about this challenge,” Rolle said. “I tell him for a rookie to come in and play Aaron Rodgers in Week 1, starting for the Bears, that’s huge.”
Amos has played in big stadiums before — the 106,572 fans at Beaver Stadium in Happy Valley is almost double Soldier Field — but never this stage.
“It’s still football,” Amos said. “I’ve been playing football since I was 6.”
The Bears think he’s ready.
Rolle suspects Amos’ college experience at cornerback, in nickel and at safety have made him a more cerebral player. He beat Mundy out for the starting job even before his injury.
Defensive coordinator Vic Fangio said he “just looks like an NFL safety should look,” while coach John Fox said he’s grown so comfortable in the scheme that he plays fast
“It was never too big for him,” Fangio said. “We’ll see how he does on Sunday against Rodgers and that great offense, but he’s just done a good job right from Day 1 till now.
“I think he’ll do fine on Sunday.”
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