The son of former Bears tackle Andy Heck is in the process of following in his father's footsteps into the NFL.
A three-year starter at North Carolina, Charlie Heck is a 6-8, 315-pound tackle who participated in the NFL Combine last week in Indianapolis in preparation for the April 23-25 draft.
Andy Heck spent five of his 12 NFL seasons with the Bears from 1994-98, starting 76 of a possible 80 games at left tackle. He also played for the Seahawks (1989-93) and Redskins (1999-2000).
The elder Heck is currently entering his 17th season as an NFL offensive line coach and his eighth in that role with the defending Super Bowl-champion Chiefs. He previously spent nine years as an assistant with the Jaguars from 2004-2012.
At the Combine, Charlie spoke about the influence his father has had on his life and football career.
"He was my role model and my mentor growing up," Charlie said. "Just what he did for our family growing up, how he taught us to be people growing up, he means the world to me."
Charlie followed his older brother to North Carolina, where Jon Heck was a four-year starting right tackle from 2013-16. Jon returned to the Tar Heels' football program in 2018 as an assistant strength coach.
According to Charlie, his father never pushed his sons to play football.
"My dad was really good growing up," Charlie said. "He was always our dad first, not really the overbearing coach that some people might think. He definitely gave us advice growing up, and we were hounding him all the time trying to get him to teach us stuff. He gave us a few secrets here and there."
Charlie started at right tackle as a sophomore and junior for the Tar Heels before moving to left tackle last season as a senior. In 2016, he appeared in eight games as a reserve when Mitchell Trubisky was North Carolina's starting quarterback.
In a draft profile, NFL.com analyst Lance Zierlein writes that Heck is "a tall tackle with inevitable leverage and anchor concerns at times despite playing with bend. He carries an NFL-ready frame with long arms and loose hips for move blocks and recoveries. His range in pass sets is just average, so he needs to get on top of rushers with his length early in the rep to maintain feel and widen the arc when needed. Heck has the talent to handle swing tackle duties and should be fully functional in all run-blocking schemes."
Charlie was born on Nov. 20, 1998—late in his father's final season with the Bears. Andy played two more years before retiring. So Charlie doesn't really recall watching his dad on the field. But he's extremely proud of his father's legacy as a player.
"As I grew up, I got to appreciate more what it meant, as I've gone through this process," Charlie said. "He played 12 years in the league, and that's something to be proud of. I'm in awe of that now, looking at that. That's something that I want to do, kind of follow in his footsteps."