LAKE FOREST – To start off his 2020 selections, Ryan Pace decided to add a player on offense.
For his second selection, he added someone on defense, and perhaps an athlete he didn’t think would be there at that selection.
With the 50th pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Bears selected cornerback Jaylon Johnson of Utah, and in the process acquired a player that some had in the first round.
Instead, the Bears were able to pick up the native of Fresno, California in the middle of the second round, adding a strong player to a cornerback group that still is looking for a second starter alongside Kyle Fuller.
A contributor to the Utes during his three seasons at the school, the cornerback was named a first team All-Pac 12 selection both in 2018 and in 2019. Last season, Johnson had 11 pass deflections and a pair of interceptions, including one for a touchdown against Washington on November 2nd.
In his three seasons at Utah, he had seven interceptions with 21 pass deflections and 102 tackles.
So why the drop?
Perhaps teams were scared off by a torn right labrum that was hurting Johnson throughout the 2019 season and finally required surgery in March. Despite the pain, Johnson managed to get through all the NFL Combine workouts in Indianapolis.
With a healthy shoulder, Johnson could prove to be a steal at No. 50, and could be in the running to replace Prince Amukamara. His release before free agency opened up a starting spot that the draft pick will compete for with returner Kevin Toliver and recent signing Tre Roberson.