BR Rookie Diary: Conte 3rd entry

In his third diary entry, Chris Conte, who has started the last seven games at free safety, talks about the team's secondary, facing Tim Tebow this weekend, his personal development and more.

In the overall view of things, we plan to reach the playoffs. We're still right there and we didn't lose any ground. It was definitely disappointing to have the recent losses, but we are still right in there in the hunt. We have to control what we can control and go on from there.

Obviously, from here on there is no margin for error. Our only chance is to win out. But that is also the danger. You want to be looking only at the game you are playing in, not thinking down the road to the next few matchups.

Mentally, I feel that we've been able to put the losses behind us and move on. You can't beat yourself up or dwell on things like that. You watch the film to correct your mistakes, but then you go out and try again. There's no point in wasting energy on things that can't be changed, like the score of a game you just lost.

S Chris Conte
Dennis Wierzbicki/US Presswire

Denver is on a roll and Tebow is definitely making headlines with some of their wins. We've studied the film and we know what we are up against. We need to put this team on our backs as a defense. It's time to make a statement by making plays, creating turnovers and takeaways. I think the schemes we have in place will work and I see no reason that we can't come back from Denver in a strong position.

To me, the Broncos' offense seems quite familiar. They love to run the football. It is more or less like what I saw in college during Pac 12 games. I feel that Tebow and company have a ground game much like that of Oregon and Nevada. It's fast and it can be relentless. That can grind defenses down if you aren't careful.

This approach is somewhat unique in the NFL, at least as far as I've seen. Denver's type of scheme has been used much more often in the college game than in the pros for some reason. They run a lot of the option and zone-read stuff. I do understand how to protect against that. We used that type of defense at Cal, so I'm definitely looking forward to this upcoming game.

I'm sorry that Major Wright will be out, but the flip side of that is that Craig Steltz has been playing really good football. That's the whole point of playing in the NFL. Injuries are going to happen. You know that anybody can go down at any time. You need to be ready to step in and step up, and Craig certainly has been doing that for us.

I'm happy where my personal game is at this point. Of course I am always looking to get better. There are a ton of plays that I can make now and that I need to keep making. I feel that I am contributing in a positive way to the team.

My body feels good so I'm thankful for that. I'd heard that the length of the NFL season takes a toll on rookies, but so far things are fine. I'm enjoying every day and looking forward to the future with this team.

Beth Gorr has been covering the Bears for the last 12 years and is the author of Bear Memories: The Chicago-Green Bay Rivalry. She is currently working on a second book about early Bears history.

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