Great Scott

Lake Forest - Heading to Bourbonnais it appeared Ian Scott would have a hard time making the 53-man roster after a disappointing rookie season.

There is an opening at nose tackle for two reasons. Alfonso Boone is out with a knee injury and Tank Johnson isn't living up to expectations.

Scott is now working with the first team and doesn't plan on letting up.

"They've showed a lot of confidence in me and you don't want to let anybody down when they have faith in you," Scott said of the coaching decision to move him into the starting lineup.

Of course, Scott wasn't always held in the highest regard within the organization. In April the Bears selected Tommie Harris and Johnson in the first and second rounds respectively.

"You've just got to continue to go out there and practice, cause if you get too focused on where you fit and what's going to happen it's hard to go out there and to continue to keep going," Scott said. "So the only the thing I was trying to focus on was to try and get better and everything has worked out so far."

It hasn't been easy for the '03 fourth-round pick. He was originally drafted to play in the previous defense, which emphasized power and size in the middle. Scott had to drop more than 20 pounds to play with more speed in Lovie Smith's defense.

"The young man was a heavy set guy and what he's done is he's worked hard, he's lost some weight and he's gotten quicker and he's worked at it, he really has, and I think he should be commended for it. That's why he's getting an opportunity to start again, because he earned it," defensive coordinator Ron Rivera.

Gap control is crucial in the scheme of the defense. Johnson had the first crack at replacing Boone and despite picking up his first career sack; the rookie has had trouble defending the run.

Smith did challenge call out Johnson and Harris to make plays.

``Yeah, definitely he did," Johnson said. ``It's a situation where you have guys you picked in the top two rounds you want them to produce. I put pressure on myself. I want to play better. Trust me, I'll be getting better and making a lot of plays."

In the meantime, the Bears have turned to Scott for help. While he's not flashy, Scott is considered a reliable run stuffing defensive tackle. Smith's defense also has a comfortable familiarity to what he played at Florida.

"The defense that we're playing isn't that much different that the defense than I played my first two years in college," Scott said. "So I know how to do it, it's just been a while since I've done it."


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