Round 2, Pick No. 48
PFF additionally graded this pick a C+. This again was likely due to PFF not accounting for my thinking that the Bears will be without Leno and Massie next season. They did observe this was a steal on my part, but they thought it was odd I took two offensive tackles when both are technically returning next season.
Rashawn Slater is a very hard offensive tackle to project. He looks like he is better suited and built more like an offensive guard, but he has looked so good as a tackle he may just stay there and succeed. Additionally, nobody is getting a look at Slater this season as he opted out.
Slater may have shorter arms and doesn’t look the part of an offensive tackle, but he plays extremely well at it. Last season, he had the task of shutting down Chase Young, the former second overall pick, and he did that exactly. He did not allow Young to sack their quarterback once despite Northwestern getting blown out.
He additionally has 38 games of tape to back up that skill set he showed against Young. He may have opted out this season, but he started 30 straight games at both right and left tackle and only missed one game last season against Nebraska due to an injury. On top of not allowing a Young sack, he didn’t allow a single sack last season.
The extremely athletic and physical tackle needs to clean up the penalties, but getting a tackle of his caliber in the second round is robbery. Some analysts have him as the second-best tackle in the class and even Daniel Jeremiah has him as the best in class.