Charles Leno – LT
The left tackle position is one of the most important positions in football. Quarterback, EDGE rusher and left tackle are typically viewed as the top three positions. I find it dumbfounding that the Chicago Bears continue to use a seventh-round draft pick as the starting left tackle, but nevertheless here we are.
The Chicago Bears seem to have a history of not valuing the position. Charles Leno was a seventh-round pick. Before him, J’Marcus Webb was the last left tackle the team drafted and he too was a seventh-round pick. Sure, the Bears have sprinkled in guys like Orlando Pace and John Tait for a few years. However, the highest pick the team has used on a left tackle was Mike Gandy in 2001. Gandy was not a first or second-round pick, he was a third.
The last successful first-round pick for the Bears was James “Jimbo” Covert back in 1983. Maybe in 2021 Ryan Pace will finally buck the trend and find a first-round talent at left tackle. Doubtful though as the team might also be looking to draft a quarterback in the first round next year.
This is 2020 though. We need Leno to step up and take back his 2018 form. In 2018, Leno scored an 80.4 grade from Pro Football Focus. That is a legit score and although I do not enjoy PFF grades, the offensive line ones are usually the best in the business. In 2019, Leno’s grade dropped to 58.6. This is an awful grade as Leno allowed 40 combined pressures. He will need to regain or come close to his 2018 performance or the Bears will be in serious trouble.