SALT LAKE CITY — Jaylon Johnson’s dream of reaching the NFL is now a reality.
The former Utah cornerback was selected by the Chicago Bears with the 50th overall pick in the second round of the 2020 NFL draft Friday night, becoming the seventh cornerback to come off the board in this year’s draft and first in the second round.
ESPN’s Matt Bowen commended Johnson for his physicality in assessing the pick while adding the former Ute should be in contention to start.
“With the Bears letting Prince Amukamara go, there is a need for depth here at the cornerback position. Johnson has the physical traits and competitive play style to fit in Chuck Pagano’s defense as a press corner, with the ball skills to finish,” Bowen wrote. “He’s a first-round talent. Put Johnson in the mix here to compete with Artie Burns and Kevin Toliver for that starting gig opposite Kyle Fuller.”
Johnson, who earned second-team All-America honors from Walter Camp and the Associated Press last season, left the Utah program after his junior season to pursue a pro career. He had seven career interceptions for the Utes and 28 passes defended, while his 21 pass breakups ranked tied for 10th all-time at Utah.
Johnson had surgery to repair a torn labrum after participating in the NFL scouting combine in February.
“I just had my third shoulder surgery (between both shoulders) and rehab is going really well,” he told NFL.com. “My improvement is steady and I’m taking everything day by day, going through exercises and strengthening it.”
From the Twitterverse
Congrats @NBAxJay1 !!! @ChicagoBears got a flat out baller on their hands, and a guy that is ready to work and grind his way to greatness!! Go kill it in Chicago!! #RSNB #GoUtes #ProUtes pic.twitter.com/risEGmV5xW— Morgan Scalley (@SafetyPride) April 25, 2020