Bears Address Secondary In Third Round; Pick Cal DB Conte At #93

He Looks Like Former Bear Adam Archuleta

I am ecstatic beyond words with the way the Bears rolled the dice and taken risks in this Draft. We tried to trade up once, and we actually traded up to get a player we targeted in the first round with our second round pick.  “Go-Getters”

Projected as only a 4th or 5th round draft pick, Chris Conte has the athletic abilities of a defensive back that would rank higher.

The Bears traveled to California to work out and scout Conte.  They also picked up notes on him via Cal defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast, a former NFL coach who has connections with Bears secondary coach Jon Hoke.  The friend of the Bears secondary coach believes Conte will excel at the next level.

Conte was supposed to participate in the East-West Shrine game, but opted not to because he believed he was going to suit up in the Senior Bowl.  However, the Senior Bowl invite never came to fruition.

Bears GM Jerry Angelo mentioned that might have worked to the Bears advantage, because his superb athleticism in action during an All-Star game might have skyrocketed Conte’s draft value.  Good thing it did not have the opportunity to boom.

A former cornerback, Conte ran a 4.52 40-yard dash at the NFL’s Scouting Combine and recorded 18 reps on the bench press at 225 pounds. He’s listed as 6-foot-2 and 197-pounds.

Conte was a reserve corner in college until last season, when he switched to safety and won first team All-Pac 10 honors. He will line up at free safety for the Bears, even though they like his experience at corner.

“There has been a lot of talk about taking corners and moving them to safeties,” Bears general manager Jerry Angelo said. “He is true free safety with size and speed.” “We spent a lot of time on him and feel real good about his position,” said general manager Jerry Angelo. “We see him as a free safety, but he’s got the size to come down and play low.

In a conference call with Chicago reporters, Conte said he thought he was the best safety in the draft.

Asked why he was better at safety than corner, Conte said, “My skill set and being an aggressive player allowed me to see the field and make calls. I always wanted to play quarterback. And playing safety is like being the quarterback of the defense.”

The Bears GM: “His value was too good to pass up.”

“We focused on fit and quality,” Angelo said. “The value at the safety position made Chris stand out.”

“Chris has the size and speed we need. We liked him during the scouting process and felt that if we were able to get him it would be a no brainer to get him.”

Conte also ranked as a top performer in the broad jump, leaping 10’7, a distance good for 4th place among DBs.

The corner turned safety is a favorite of NFL Films guru Greg Cosell for his starting-caliber free safety range.

Two Picks Remain In The 2011 Draft For The Bears:

  • Round 5, #160
  • Round 6, #195
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One Response to “Bears Address Secondary In Third Round; Pick Cal DB Conte At #93”

  1. […] Bears Address Secondary In Third Round; Pick Cal DB Conte At #93 […]

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