Bears turn into Gators of the North

LAKE FOREST -- Don't be a Gator hater. Especially if you're a Bears fan. <!--Default NodeId For Chicago is 115,2005--><A HREF=>Chicago</A> found one-third of their talent from one college: the University of <!--Default NodeId For Florida is 570,2005--><A HREF=>Florida</A>. And the Bears definitely loaded up on Gators.

After taking quarterback Rex Grossman with the 22nd pick in the first round of the NFL draft, the Bears bounced back by chomping down on Gators: three others to be exact.

Safety Todd Johnson, along with fellow Florida products and defensive tackles Ian Scott (6-2, 312) and Tron LaFavor (6-1, 290) were drafted by the Bears in Sunday's final rounds.

Johnson, a 6-foot, 206-pounder, can play both free and strong safety. Johnson, a fourth-round pick (100th overall), has been described as a coach on the field who doesn't make many mistakes.

"I'm going to do what is asked of me by the coaches," said Johnson, who had 88 tackles in 12 starts and played on both punt block and kickoff return teams. "If they want me to run through a wall I'm going to try and do it."

Scott, also a fourth-round pick (116th overall), left school a year early to enter the draft. He started 11 games, playing both left and right defensive tackle. He had 57 tackles, a sack, seven tackles for loss, nine QB pressures and blocked a kick.

"I think I'm a very aggressive guy on the football field and I can do a good job of getting penetration and disrupting the offense's comfort zone a little bit," Scott said.

LaFavor, who some categorize as a project, was a fifth-round pick (171st overall). The two Gator linemen give the Bears some depth at the position. Both Ted Washington, 35, and Keith Traylor, 33, are entering the final year of their contracts.

"You know, the SEC (Southeastern Conference) -- if not the best -- it's one of the best conferences in college football," Bears director of college scouting Greg Gabriel said. "They're playing top teams, week after week after week, so you can't put enough emphasis on that.

"All the guys in that conference, and not just Florida, are ready to step up and play."

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