Should the Chicago Bears draft Matt Peart from UConn?
Matt Peart has been a starting tackle on the Uconn offensive line for all four years of his college career. In 2016 and 2017, Peart played left tackle, but in 2018 and 2019, he played right tackle. 2019 was quite easily his best play, and it has boosted his stock heading into the 2020 NFL draft.
Looking at the Chicago Bears depth chart, it is pretty clear that they need depth at both tackle spots and may need a replacement for Bobby Massie in the shorter term than they would like. Could Matt Peart be that fit?
As you can see, Peart is above average in size compared to his peers in the NFL. He also has pretty good explosiveness. However, his agility drills are an issue and show poor foot quickness.
His experience at both tackle positions and four years of starting snaps make him a depth tackle who could be relied on in a pinch. He also has the apparent size and looks like an NFL tackle. More often than not, Peart has his hands on you before you get yours on Peart. He explodes off of the football and can use his length to dictate the route of defenders.
He can get too wide out of his stance and can lose balance as well. Peart will often stand up straight out of his stance, which takes away from his initial step as well. When he does not win with that first step, he struggles with the change of direction and recovery to catch up and is more hit or miss. He has four years of starting experience, but was raw in high school.
NFL Comparison for Matt Peart
When you look at the list of the most similar athletic and physical comparisons, there are 47 other players with similar height, weight, speed, and agility. What is interesting to note is that Bobby Massie, Germain Ifedi, Tom Compton, and Kyle Long all came up as athletic and physical comparables to Peart.
Here is Peart compared to Massie, and a few other NFL tackles which he matches with skillset wise.
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One thing is clear, if Ryan Pace uses thresholds, or has a type for an offensive lineman, Peart checks physical and athletic boxes.
"Swing tackle prospect with outstanding length and athleticism, but lacking play strength and hand usage to survive against NFL competition at this time. It is important to note that Peart has the potential to get stronger and that issues of concern are mostly correctable. He has the physical traits that put him in position to get better and better as a pro, but after four years as a collegiate starter, teams may wonder whether he has the necessary demeanor and grit at the point of attack to stick around as a pro."
"Size is Massie’s best friend, as he was able to excel as a blocker in the run game simply from being able to maul his man and control from his girth. He is more of a react-and-catch blocker who gets away with this technique solely because of his leg strength. He has decent range in his pass set and controls his man once engaged."
Both point to their size and stride lengths. Their reach can help them win, but sloppy mechanics can also set them behind.
Fit With Chicago Bears
Peart checks a lot of boxes. He has plenty of experience, at right and left tackle, but would lean towards starting on the right side. Peart fits a type that Pace likes, and would not need to be thrust into a starting spot. The question becomes, when is he going to get drafted, and would he be worth that?
According to mock draft data, he is expected to get drafted between pick 42 and 119 and, on average, pick 89. The Bears pick 50th and then not again until 140th. 50th may be high, especially for someone unlikely to contribute. However, he may not fall to the fourth round. PFF has him as a third-round pick.
Ryan Pace is known to trade up when he knows he has his guy. He has an excess of draft picks on day three. Could he package a few to target Peart, if he were to fall beyond 100?
Could he trade back, and pick up a pick in the 90s that could go to Peart?