Jaylon Johnson

American football player (born 1999)

American football player
Jaylon Johnson
No. 1 – Chicago Bears
Personal information
Born: (1999-04-19) April 19, 1999 (age 25)
Fresno, California, U.S.
Height:6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight:195 lb (88 kg)
Career information
High school:Central (Fresno, California)
College:Utah (2017–2019)
NFL draft:2020 / Round: 2 / Pick: 50
Career history
  • Chicago Bears (2020–present)
Roster status:Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2023
Total tackles:161
Forced fumbles:3
Fumble recoveries:1
Pass deflections:41
Defensive touchdowns:1
Player stats at PFR

Jaylon Lawrence Johnson (born April 19, 1999) is an American football cornerback for the Chicago Bears of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Utah.

Early years

Johnson attended Central High School in Fresno, California. He played in the 2017 US Army All-American Bowl.[1] He committed to the University of Utah to play college football.[2] Johnson also played basketball in high school.[3]

College career

As a true freshman at Utah in 2017, Johnson played in 12 games and made two starts, recording 25 tackles and one interception.[4] He became a starter his sophomore year in 2018, starting all 14 games.[5] He finished the season with 41 tackles, four interceptions and a touchdown.[6] Johnson returned as a starter his junior year in 2019.[7][8] Following a junior season where he had 10 pass breakups and was named to the First-team All-Pac-12 Conference, Johnson announced that he would forgo his senior season and declare for the 2020 NFL draft.[9]

Professional career

Pre-draft measurables
Height Weight Arm length Hand span 40-yard dash 10-yard split 20-yard split 20-yard shuttle Three-cone drill Vertical jump Broad jump Bench press
5 ft 11+78 in
(1.83 m)
193 lb
(88 kg)
31+38 in
(0.80 m)
9+38 in
(0.24 m)
4.50 s 1.59 s 2.66 s 4.13 s 7.01 s 36.5 in
(0.93 m)
10 ft 4 in
(3.15 m)
15 reps
All values from NFL Combine[10][11][12]

Johnson was drafted by the Chicago Bears with the 50th overall pick in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft.[13] He signed a four-year rookie contract with the team on July 21.[14] Johnson made his NFL debut in the Bears' Week 1 match-up against the Detroit Lions. Johnson had six combined tackles and three passes defended, including a pass deflection in the endzone as time expired to secure the Bears' 27–23 comeback win. Johnson missed the Bears' final three games of the 2020 season due to a shoulder injury. Johnson finished his 2020 rookie season with 44 combined tackles, no interceptions, and 15 passes defended.

The following season, Johnson became the Bears' top cornerback after former teammate Kyle Fuller was released in a salary cap move.[15] On September 19, 2021, Johnson recorded his first career interception after he picked off a pass thrown by Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow.[16] Through the first two weeks of the season, on all passes to players he was covering, Johnson only allowed one reception, while knocking down three attempts and intercepting a pass.[17] This earned him the highest-rated pass coverage grade (an advanced stat that measures the ability to cover receivers) in the league through that point.[17] On November 25, Johnson recorded a career-high 6 tackles and forced a fumble in a 16–14 Thanksgiving Day win over the Detroit Lions.[18]

The Bears fired head coach Matt Nagy after the 2021 season and hired Matt Eberflus, who implemented a 4–3 defensive scheme.[19] Johnson did not attend the team's voluntary offseason training session, and was subsequently placed on the second team defense behind Kindle Vildor and Kyler Gordon.[19] He reclaimed his starting position during the team's mandatory offseason workouts.[20] Johnson was placed on injured reserve on December 23 after breaking his right ring finger.[20] Eberflus confirmed Johnson could have potentially returned, but the team did not want to risk Johnson injuring his finger any further. He started in 11 games for the Bears in 2022, in which he recorded seven pass defenses and a forced fumble.[21]

Johnson entered the 2023 NFL season in the final year of his rookie contract.[22] He voiced interest in signing a contract extension with the Bears, but neither party could come to an agreement during the preseason or regular season.[23] Pro Football Focus graded him as the 10th-best cornerback in the NFL through the first six weeks of the season.[22] Johnson recorded two interceptions including a 39-yard touchdown return in a Week 7 victory over the Las Vegas Raiders.[24] He finished the season with 31 tackles and a career-high 4 interceptions.[25] He was named to the Pro Bowl and was also PFF's highest rated cornerback through Week 17.[25]

On March 5, 2024, the Bears placed the franchise tag on Johnson.[26] Two days later, he signed a four-year, $76 million contract extension.[27]


  1. ^ "Army All-American Jaylon Johnson eager to compete against the nation's best". USA TODAY High School Sports. October 3, 2016. Retrieved June 2, 2023.
  2. ^ McDonald, Ryan (October 28, 2016). "Utah football: Four-star California DB Jaylon Johnson commits to Utes as part of 2017 class". Deseret News. Retrieved January 9, 2022.
  3. ^ Worthy, Lynn (October 10, 2017). "Former California high school two-sport prospect Jaylon Johnson spurned USC to play for Utes". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved January 9, 2022.
  4. ^ "Mature freshman Jaylon Johnson shining at CB for Utah". USAToday.com. Associated Press. September 13, 2017. Retrieved January 9, 2022.
  5. ^ Galavitz, Anthony (December 28, 2018). "Jaylon Johnson's route from Central High to New Year's Eve Bowl was painful". Fresno Bee. Retrieved June 1, 2023.
  6. ^ Facer, Dirk (August 5, 2019). "'He's the best corner in the nation, easily:' Utah's Jaylon Johnson locked in on receivers, junior season". Deseret.com. Retrieved December 17, 2019.
  7. ^ Kamrani, Christoper (October 10, 2019). "'He's got that special ….': Jaylon Johnson is this close to accomplishing it all". The Athletic. Retrieved December 17, 2019.
  8. ^ Genessy, Jody (October 23, 2019). "Best player? Utah cornerback Jaylon Johnson making a case while shutting down opponents". Deseret.com. Retrieved December 17, 2019.
  9. ^ McDonald, Ryan (December 13, 2019). "Utah Utes cornerback Jaylon Johnson announces intention to skip senior season, declare for 2020 NFL draft". Deseret.com. Retrieved December 17, 2019.
  10. ^ "Jaylon Johnson Combine Profile". NFL.com. Retrieved October 24, 2020.
  11. ^ "Jaylon Johnson, Utah, CB, 2020 NFL Draft Scout, NCAA College Football". draftscout.com. Retrieved March 10, 2022.
  12. ^ "Jaylon Johnson 2020 NFL Draft Profile". insider.espn.com. Retrieved March 10, 2022.
  13. ^ Newman, Josh (April 24, 2020). "Utes' Jaylon Johnson goes to Chicago in Round 2 of the NFL draft". Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved April 24, 2020.
  14. ^ Mayer, Larry (July 21, 2020). "Bears sign all seven of their 2020 draft picks". Chicago Bears. Retrieved July 21, 2020.
  15. ^ Barbieri, Alyssa (July 22, 2021). "Bears' Jaylon Johnson discusses tall order of stepping into Kyle Fuller's shoes as CB1". Bears Wire. Retrieved January 9, 2022.
  16. ^ "Rookie Fields making first NFL start as Bears visit Browns". ABC Chicago. ESPN. September 23, 2021. Retrieved September 23, 2021.
  17. ^ a b Barbieri, Alyssa (September 29, 2021). "Bear Necessities: Jaylon Johnson continues to be a force at cornerback". Bears Wire. Retrieved January 9, 2022.
  18. ^ "Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions – November 25th, 2021". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved January 9, 2022.
  19. ^ a b Chamberlain, Gene (May 24, 2022). "Jaylon Johnson Practices with the 2s". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved January 1, 2023.
  20. ^ a b Chamberlain, Gene (December 23, 2022). "Both Starting Cornerbacks Go on IR". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved January 1, 2023.
  21. ^ Mayer, Larry (December 27, 2022). "Why did Bears put Johnson on IR? / Chalk Talk". Chicago Bears. Retrieved January 1, 2023.
  22. ^ a b Ong, Eli (October 20, 2023). "Trade speculation: Will Justin Fields and Jaylon Johnson survive the deadline?". WGN-TV. Retrieved October 22, 2023.
  23. ^ Cronin, Courtney (December 20, 2023). "Pending free agent CB Jaylon Johnson wants to stay with Bears". ESPN. Retrieved January 7, 2024.
  24. ^ "Rookie Tyson Bagent leads 3 TD drives in place of Justin Fields, Bears beat Raiders 30–12". ESPN. Associated Press. October 22, 2023. Retrieved October 25, 2023.
  25. ^ a b Ong, Eli (January 3, 2024). "Montez Sweat, Jaylon Johnson named to Pro Bowl". WGN-TV. Retrieved January 7, 2024.
  26. ^ Mayer, Larry (March 5, 2024). "Roster Move: Bears put non-exclusive franchise tag on CB Jaylon Johnson". ChicagoBears.com.
  27. ^ Cronin, Courtney (March 7, 2024). "Bears, Jaylon Johnson agree to 4-year, $76M deal, sources say". ESPN.com. Retrieved June 9, 2024.

External links

  • Chicago Bears bio
  • Utah Utes bio
  • Jaylon Johnson on X
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Chicago Bears roster
Unsigned draft picks
AFC East
NFC East
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Chicago Bears 2020 NFL draft selections