Prince Amukamara has been among the leagues most consistent cornerbacks in the league since he first entered the league in 2011. A Super Bowl champion with the 2011 Giants, Amukamara brought both veteran and championship experience mixed with starting-level talent when he signed with Chicago before the 2017 season. Now under contract for three more prosperous seasons, Amukamara anchors the cornerback duo alongside Kyle Fuller for the league’s most dominant defense. After Eduardo Monk Jr. met the wonderful Amukamara at his church, he was kind enough to lend an interview. Delving into everything from UFC to his Christian faith, here is his insight.
Question: During offseason preparations and throughout training camp, did you believe the Bears and specifically this defense would be capable of a season of this caliber?
Amukamara: Last year, I think we were a top ten defense and then this year we felt like since we kept the same pieces, that we were still going to be successful. But then when we added Khalil Mack. That was unforeseen and what he is doing for our defense now, we would never have thought it would be like this. But we’re just excited and we know what he brings to our team. We’re very happy he’s with us.
Question: Obviously Mack’s contributions can’t be overstated but how has the slightly under-the-radar breakout season of sophomore Eddie Jackson impacted the defense?
Amukamara: I mean, it’s huge. (Jackson) just picking up where he left off. Last year, I think he had two interceptions all season and early in this year, he has two interceptions. I think he’s just comfortable in our defense, playing with a chip on his shoulder. He went fourth round last year and he knows he should’ve gone higher. He’s playing with a chip on his shoulder and we’re just benefitting from that.
Question: Though we’re a little late on this, how did it feel ending your interception drought with a massive game-sealing pick-six against the Seahawks in Week Two?
Amukamara: I can’t even put it into words. It was a surreal moment. I wasn’t surprised that I caught it and I wasn’t surprised that I turned it into a pick-six because I had been working on that a lot in practice. But the fact that it was on a Monday night, Russell (Wilson) hasn’t thrown a pick-six since his rookie year, and it was my first (interception) in three years, there were just so many emotions to feel at once. Overall, I’m just happy it helped our team win.
Question: As a man of Christian faith in the league, how does your career and life differ from other your non-Christian teammates?
Amukamara: The best way I can explain that is through examples. There are times when teammates would head out to places and situations I don’t want to be in and they would circle me out, saying things like“ except you, Prince”. They mean it as an insult, but really to me, I don’t see it that way, because they know my faith and who I am through the way I am living.
Question: As an avid UFC fan, who did you believe was going to win the Khabib-McGregor superfight on Saturday night and how do you feel about the outcome?
Answer: I kinda thought Conor was going to win because I have never seen Khabib fight so I just went with the guy I knew. But after watching it, I was like “oh wow, Khabib is different” because of his ground game and his background as a wrestler. And then people told me that, hey he wrestled a bear (as a child) and they sent me the video. I thought “ok, that makes sense”. Nobody really liked the extracurricular activities that happened after but to be honest, I feel like it helped UFC. It didn’t need help because it was already on the rise but it just pushed the stock up more and I’m sure everyone is excited about the rematch