The Chicago Bears signed Leonard Floyd to a four-year deal with a fifth-year option, the team announced on Friday.
Floyd was selected ninth-overall in April’s draft after the Bears traded up two spots to snag him. General manager Ryan Pace spoke about the need to collect pass rushers and the Bears liked Floyd’s length and versatility coming out of the University of Georgia.
The Bears started OTAs this week and it didn’t take long for Floyd to endear himself to his teammates.
Veteran inside linebacker Danny Trevathan, a veteran newcomer to the team this offseason, liked what he saw in Floyd.
“He’s quick, fast and instinctive,” Trevathan said. “He’s kind of a natural athlete. [When he] gets out here and learns the plays a little bit more and once we put on pads we can really see what’s going on. Right now we see how quick he is and how agile he is.”
Although offensive guard Kyle Long has a different perspective on the field than Trevathan does, lining up on the opposite side of the ball than Floyd, he had a similar take on the Bears’ first-round draft pick.
“[He’s] big and fast,” Long noted. “He’s very long. He’s got really good hips and leverage. Being back inside, I haven’t had an opportunity to go against him. But you see it on tape. He flashes some really, really good stuff. He can run all over the field. He covers anything with a heartbeat and he can rush the passer, so that’s a dynamic guy.”
The Bears liked what they saw from Floyd as a pass rusher in college but they’re hoping he can pack on some body weight to be a more destructive force in the run game.
According to ESPN’s Jeff Dickerson, the Bears want Floyd to eat every couple hours to help him pack on the weight.
“I’ve got prompts set up on my phone of times in the day that I’m supposed to eat,” Floyd said. “I [have to] make sure I eat at the times when I get the alarm.”
The challenge in packing on strength and muscle is to not let Floyd lose his quick-twitch athleticism that makes him such a good pass rusher.