Safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix joined Green Bay as the 21st player picked in the 2014 NFL Draft, and the former Alabama All-American played in the next 71 Packers’ games — until he was traded to the Washington Redskins on Oct. 30.
But the first game of the NFL’s 2019 season will reunite Clinton-Dix with the Packers — as an opponent. The NFL will kick off its 100th season with the league’s most-played rivalry when Green Bay visits the Chicago Bears on Sept. 5.
Clinton-Dix joined the Bears in March when he signed a one-year contract with Chicago as a free agent. He’ll return to Lambeau Field when the Bears visit Green Bay on Dec. 15.
The NFL announced its regular-season schedule for the 2019 season on Tuesday night. Instead of the traditional Thursday night opening featuring the defending Super Bowl champion, the league decided to highlight its history for the centennial season with the Thursday night meeting between the Bears and Packers, who’ll be squaring off for the 199th time (including two playoff meetings). Green Bay leads the series 97-95-6.
The New England Patriots, who won the NFL’s 2018 championship by beating the Los Angeles Rams 13-3 in Super Bowl LIII, will headline the first Sunday night game of the season, when they host the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sept. 8.
Clinton-Dix won’t be the only player with Alabama football roots who’ll find himself on a strange sideline in 2019. Among the players from state high schools and colleges who’ll be opposing their 2018 teams in the coming season are:
· Linebacker Kwon Alexander (Oxford High School) played his first four NFL seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and he’ll be back in Tampa on the first Sunday of the 2019 season — even though he signed a four-year, $84 million contract with the San Francisco 49ers in March. The 49ers kick off the campaign by visiting the Bucs on Sept. 8.