Is Charles Leno Chicago Bears best kept secret?

BALTIMORE, MD - OCTOBER 15: Quarterback Mitchell Trubisky
BALTIMORE, MD - OCTOBER 15: Quarterback Mitchell Trubisky /

Bleacher Report rated Charles Leno as the Chicago Bears best kept secret, is that fair?

It seems as though as the years have gone by, Charles Leno has started to win over Chicago Bears fans. He went from the unproven seventh round pick to a relied on starter who got a second contract last season.

However, Leno has remained debated by some. He is not a Pro Bowl type of player and is certainly not an All-Pro. That does not appear to be in his future either. If the Bears tried, some think the team could upgrade over Leno.

However, as the time has gone by it seems as though Bears fans have realized that Bobby Massie needs to be replaced before Leno. Bleacher Report tends to not only agree with that sentiment, but also sees Leno as a tremendous value. They rated Leno as the teams best kept secret.

Justis Mosqueda of Bleacher Report writes:

"Among starting veteran offensive linemen, the only left tackle with a lower cap hit than Chicago’s Charles Leno this year will be Alejandro Villanueva. Leno has only made $10.7 million to this point in his career. Sixteen different offensive linemen have higher cap hits than $10.7 million alone this year.Leno has consistently improved as a pass protector since he was drafted in the seventh round in 2014 and is now one of the team’s top 10 players. If he hit the open market, Leno might be a $60 million player with the way the offensive line market is exploding. Over the next four years, the Bears should save about $20 million on the market price for their starting-caliber left tackle."

When put like that, it is almost undeniable what kind of value Leno is. Even to pay for a player at the caliber of Leno on the free market, it would cost the Bears a significant amount more.

More from Bear Goggles On

To have been able to draft him that late, get starter years out of him on his rookie contract, and then pay a rate on his second deal that only backup veterans and rookie contract players are making is some incredible resourcefulness.

Leno is not talked about as a leader on the team. Heck, Charles Leno is not talked about in general. However, his ability to stay formidable at a premier position such as left tackle, and to do so while playing at such a cheap rate in a tremendous benefit to the team.

So, while you may not love Leno, and there are better tackles in the NFL, when thinking about the financial help he provides, and the lack of press he receives, he truly is the teams best kept secret.