With the 126th overall pick, the Houston Texans drafted Charlie Heck in the fourth roundof the NFL Draft. Heck is UNC’s first selection in this year’s draft. Akil gave an in-depth breakdown of Heck’s draft prospects last week.
The 6-8, 311-pound offensive lineman spent the past season as the starting left tackle, where he protected Sam Howell’s blind side. Per the official UNC athletics website, he finished the season with a team leading 43 knockdowns and only allowed one-third of a sack all season. (Truthfully, I don’t know you calculate one-third of a sack, but that seems impressive.) Behind his senior leadership of a constantly fluctuating offensive line, the Heels’ offense averaged 474 yards, good for second-best in the ACC and 12th nationally.
Unfortunately, his importance this past season was most noticeable when he was not on the field. Heck missed the Appalachian State game with a broken hand. Without his presence on the line defensive end Demetrius Taylor returned one fumble for a touchdown, and intercepted a pass that eventually led to another Mountaineer touchdown. Both turnovers happened on the left side of the line — the spot that Heck patrolled.
Heck is UNC’s first offensive lineman to be drafted since Russell Bodine in 2014.