Chris Conte had a 2013 to forget, more often than not becoming the scapegoat for a Bears defense that ranked 30th in both yards allowed and scoring.
And his offseason didn't go much better, as he underwent shoulder surgery in April that was expected to sideline him four-to-five-months, and the Bears brass made safety one of their prime targets in both the draft and free agency.
But the 25-year-old safety who has started 40 games the last three seasons is confident in himself and knows he can turn things around.
"It's really just about me becoming the football player that I'm confident that I am and proving to everyone that I am a good football player," he said on Monday's Kap and Haugh Show. "I know there's a lot of people that don't believe that, but that really doesn't matter to me because I'm confident in the player I am and I think the coaches and the Bears still believe that."
The Bears could very well believe in Conte, but they aren't taking any chances in case he isn't healthy or can't improve on a dismal 2013.
They signed four safeties -- Ryan Mundy, M.D. Jennings, Danny McCray and Adrian Wilson -- this offseason and drafted another, Minnesota's Brock Vereen, in the fourth round.
But all the chatter that Conte's spot on the Bears could be in jeopardy isn't slowing him down.
"It's about coming back and being the best I can be," he said. It's not about worrying about who they brought in or what guy's doing what."