Chicago Bears cornerback has a history of overcoming challenges. Even with a pandemic and unusual offseason, he’s ready to do it again.

Chicago Bears cornerback Kindle Vildor is used to being underestimated. He played at a small school, Georgia Southern. Because of that, many scouts dismissed his success. They point out that the competition at the Sun Belt Conference wasn’t the greatest.

Vildor had 84 tackles and 9 interceptions in his college career (six of them in his last two seasons). The Bears selected him in the fifth round (163rd overall) of this year’s draft.

Vildor faced an uphill battle to show he deserved to play on this elite defense. The competition is a huge step up from what he played against in college. Added to the mix is the crazy offseason due to the COVID-19 pandemic that wiped out all preseason games.

Vildor only had a limited amount of snaps and no games to make an impression on the coaches. He impressed them nonetheless.

Vildor spent the time before training camp learning the playbook and perfecting his technique. It showed once camp started. Secondary coach Deshea Townsend had nothing but praise for the rookie.

I’m excited to see him get out there and get a chance to compete because he is a true competitor — the way that he asks questions in meetings, the things that he wants to know; it just shows that he’s a competitor. So I’m excited to see him get a chance to get out there and play.

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Vildor sought out the veterans to help him transition to the NFL. He moved from the outside to slot corner so he wanted tips from Buster Skrine. Skrine is also from Georgia so they had some similar experiences. He also went to fellow rookie Jaylon Johnson and the two bonded over their shared experience as rookies.

This unusual circumstances surrounding 2020 hasn’t fazed Vildor. He says he’s a homebody anyway, spending his non-football time at home, watching television and playing video games. It’s just more of the same for him.

Artie Burns‘ ACL injury helped Vildor in camp. He saw more snaps as a result of Burns’ loss. The Bears probably go with five cornerbacks and Skrine, Johnson, Kyle Fuller, and Kevin Toliver are sure bets to make the team. That leaves Vildor to battle Duke Shelley for the final spot. Vildor took advantage of the extra snaps, however. With his good camp performance and Shelley not really distinguishing himself, Vildor likely grabs that last spot.

While Vildor was a surprise pick, he could be another one of general manager Ryan Pace’s successful late round picks. It looks as if the future of the Chicago Bears secondary is in good hands. Fuller continues to excel, and Johnson and Vildor look good as rookies and can only grow even better going on.

 

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