Bears pick Charles Leno Jr. in 7th

May, 10, 2014
May 10
7:21
PM ET
LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- The Chicago Bears wrapped up the NFL draft on Saturday by taking Boise State offensive tackle Charles Leno Jr. with their final pick, No. 246 overall.

My take: Although most of the spots -- including reserve roles -- are already set along the offensive line, the Bears could afford to use a pick on a developmental player such as Leno, who has impressive measurables and a thorough body of work in college as a three-year starter at Boise State.

Some scouts consider Leno a potential swing offensive tackle, but what’s encouraging about him is he’s still growing as a player. Despite immense athletic ability, good size, and explosion, Leno still hasn’t yet figured out how to put it all together. Chicago offensive coordinator Aaron Kromer has earned a reputation for developing late-round talent along the offensive line. So pairing the coach with Leno might turn him into a productive player that could eventually earn a role as a starter.

Leno played in 41 games at Boise State, and started in his last 39 outings. Leno started 26 contests at left tackle over his junior and senior seasons. As a sophomore, Leno started at right guard for 13 games. So he possesses the versatility general manager Phil Emery covets.

What’s more is Leno, as a starter, was responsible for 245 knockdown blocks, and 14 blocks that resulted in touchdowns in the running game.

Good company: Prior to Leno becoming the starter at left tackle in college, the last three starters at that position for Boise State were Daryn Colledge (2002-05), Ryan Clady (2006-07) and Nate Potter (2008-11). Colledge is a ninth-year veteran. Clady is a seventh-year veteran and three-time Pro Bowler. Potter, meanwhile, has started six games in three seasons with the Arizona Cardinals.

What’s next: The Bears will now start working the phones to put together their class of undrafted free agents. Once the personnel department completes that task, the rookies will convene at Halas Hall next week for a three-day minicamp.

Michael C. Wright

ESPN Chicago Bears reporter

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