Chicago Bears: End of the season 2021 NFL mock draft
By Joseph Herff
Round 2 Ι Pick No. 52 Ι Chicago Bears select an offensive tackle
It was a major shock to me that Alex Leatherwood fell all the way to my selection in the second round. The Alabama offensive tackle has played both guard and tackle on the offensive line throughout his career. As a sophomore in 2018, he played guard until the 2019 season when he moved to offensive tackle. He stayed after his junior year despite some strong NFL Draft projections.
Now the starting left tackle protecting Mac Jones, Leatherwood has cemented himself as a technically-sound and well-rounded offensive tackle. He isn’t extremely powerful, but he makes up for that with his mean and nasty attitude when it comes to run-blocking. His long arms additionally help him to get to his blocks faster and help with his pass blocking. He has good footwork in his pass blocking and excels at keeping his edge rushers in front of him.
The Bears return both Charles Leno and Bobby Massie next season but don’t be surprised if the Bears cut at least one of them to free up cap space. Both of them are aging and aren’t worth their contracts frankly. Leatherwood could then instantly start at whichever tackle position is vacant competing with Alex Bars for the starting job. If they cut both, he could be the instant starter at left tackle as well.