The Chicago Bears will release left tackle Charle Leno to free up salary cap space and pave the way for Teven Jenkins to start as a rookie.
Charles Leno has played his last game with the Chicago Bears. The starting left tackle will be a post-June 1 release, which will save the Bears around $9 million, according to Ian Rapoport.
Leno has been a subject of criticism among Bears fans for looking like a turnstile at times and not living up to the $37 million contract he signed. The former seventh round pick out of Boise State began his career as a draft find but over time his flaws were exposed and he became expendable.
Leno joins Bobby Massie as the second starting offensive linemen released by the Bears this offseason.
Teven Jenkins will start at left tackle with Charles Leno released
The decision to trade up in the second round to draft Oklahoma State’s Teven Jenkins put Leno’s future in question, but it was believed Leno would get one more year, at least.
Jenkins looked like a guarantee to be the starting right tackle as a rookie with Leon on the left, but with Leno’s release, Jenkins will get the chance to start at the left tackle spot. He won’t have an easy year to ease in as a right tackle as a rookie before transitioning to the blindside in his second year. A projected first round pick, Jenkins slipped to the second round where the Bears traded up with the Carolina Panthers to get their left tackle.
This means Germain Ifedi will compete with fifth round pick, Larry Borom at right tackle.
With Cody Whitehair, James Daniels occupying the guard spots and likely Sam Mustipfer at center, the Bears have gotten a lot younger and a lot nastier in the trenches.
This is the line that will open holes for David Montgomery and protect Andy Dalton until Justin Fields wins the quarterback job.