With the final pick of the 2022 NFL Draft, the San Francisco 49ers selected Iowa State quarterback Brock Purdy.
Two hundred and sixty-two players were selected during the course of the 2022 NFL Draft, and the final pick comes with the label of “Mr. Irrelevant.”
But former NFL wide receiver Paul Salata, who founded Irrelevant Week, says it’s a title to celebrate.
According to Salata’s website, Irrelevant Week is a “celebration honoring football’s underdog, while also making charitable contributions to the community.”
But do those with the title “Mr. Irrelevant” from the NFL draft typically perform as a professional football player?
The NCAA analyzed every NFL draft from 2012 through 2021 and here’s what the organization found:
- The player dubbed Mr. Irrelevant on an annual basis has played in an average of 11.2 NFL regular-season games in his career.
- The average regular-season games played have been propped up from the last two players to earn the distinction.
- LB Tae Crowder has played in 28 games in two seasons while LB Grant Stuard, 2021’s Mr. Irrelevant, played in 17 regular-season games as a rookie.
- The two linebackers have played in 45 games in their NFL careers, while the eight previous Mr. Irrelevants have combined to play in just 40 regular-season games, or an average of five per player.
- Seventh-round picks play an average of 28.1 regular-season games, so the last pick of the draft has played in roughly 40% of the games that his peers have in their careers.
- The second-to-last pick of the draft has played an average of roughly eight more games than Mr. Irrelevant — 19.4 regular-season games compared to 11.2 regular-season games.
- The third-to-last pick has played in roughly twice as many games, 38.4 games on average, as the second-to-last pick and roughly 3.5 times as many as Mr. Irrelevant.
The complete list of Mr. Irrelevants that the NCAA examined, along with the number of regular-season games each has played in the NFL from 2012 to 2021 includes:
- 2012: Chandler Harnish, QB, Northern Illinois | Indianapolis Colts | 0 games played
- 2013: Justice Cunningham, TE, South Carolina | Indianapolis Colts | 4 games played
- 2014: Lonnie Ballentine, DB, Memphis | Houston Texas | 4 games played
- 2015: Gerald Christian, TE, Louisville | Arizona Cardinals | 3 games played
- 2016: Kalan Reed, CB, Southern Miss | Tennessee Titans | 7 games played
- 2017: Chad Kelly, QB, Ole Miss | Denver Broncos | 1 game played
- 2018: Trey Quinn, WR, SMU | Washington Football Team | 16 games played
- 2019: Caleb Wilson, TE, UCLA | Arizona Cardinals | 5 games played
- 2020: Tae Crowder, LB, Georgia | New York Giants | 28 games played
- 2021: Grant Stuard, LB, Houston | Tampa Bay Buccaneers | 17 games played
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