Iowa Hawkeyes' highest NFL draft picks since 1970

Written by:
February 24, 2022
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Iowa Hawkeyes' highest NFL draft picks since 1970

While most colleges and universities field a football team as part of its general athletics program, there are some for which football is more than merely a sport—it’s akin almost to a religion. Devotion to the team and its colors is as important to that school’s culture as a religious icon is to a believer. These programs actively scout and recruit notable high school players, and are in turn rigorously applied to by matriculating seniors eager to make a name for themselves at the collegiate level.

Among the most notable college football empires are Notre Dame, the universities of Alabama, Michigan, Texas, Nebraska, and Oklahoma, Penn State, Ohio State—the list goes on and on.

But for every touchstone football school, there is an outlier that has produced some of the most successful and cherished players in the game. Think Jackson State, which gave us “Sweetness” himself, Hall of Fame running back Walter Payton. Or Mississippi Valley State, which yielded 3-time Super Bowl champion and #1 Player in NFL History, as voted by the NFL Network, ‘49ers wide receiver Jerry Rice.

Each year, the college draft serves as a source of renewal to professional football and a testament to the quality of college programs nationwide. With the 2022 NFL draft set to take place April 28-30 in Las Vegas, Stacker compiled a list of the highest NFL draft picks from the Iowa Hawkeyes using data from Pro Football Reference. Ties were broken by the most recent year drafted.

#20. Eric Steinbach (G)
- Draft pick: Round 2, #33 overall in 2003
- Drafted by: Cincinnati Bengals
- Years as a starter in NFL: 8 (0 Pro Bowls)

#19. Ross Verba (T)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #30 overall in 1997
- Drafted by: Green Bay Packers
- Years as a starter in NFL: 8 (0 Pro Bowls)

#18. Dallas Clark (TE)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #24 overall in 2003
- Drafted by: Indianapolis Colts
- Years as a starter in NFL: 9 (1 Pro Bowls)

#17. Bryan Bulaga (T)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #23 overall in 2010
- Drafted by: Green Bay Packers
- Years as a starter in NFL: 9 (0 Pro Bowls)

#16. Riley Reiff (T)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #23 overall in 2012
- Drafted by: Detroit Lions
- Years as a starter in NFL: 9 (0 Pro Bowls)

#15. Mike Haight (G)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #22 overall in 1986
- Drafted by: NY Jets
- Years as a starter in NFL: 3 (0 Pro Bowls)

#14. Ron Hallstrom (G)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #22 overall in 1982
- Drafted by: Green Bay Packers
- Years as a starter in NFL: 9 (0 Pro Bowls)

#13. John Alt (T)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #21 overall in 1984
- Drafted by: Kansas City Chiefs
- Years as a starter in NFL: 10 (2 Pro Bowls)

#12. Adrian Clayborn (DE)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #20 overall in 2011
- Drafted by: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Years as a starter in NFL: 2 (0 Pro Bowls)

#11. Noah Fant (TE)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #20 overall in 2019
- Drafted by: Denver Broncos
- Years as a starter in NFL: 3 (0 Pro Bowls)

#10. Chad Greenway (LB)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #17 overall in 2006
- Drafted by: Minnesota Vikings
- Years as a starter in NFL: 10 (2 Pro Bowls)

#9. Ronnie Harmon (RB)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #16 overall in 1986
- Drafted by: Buffalo Bills
- Years as a starter in NFL: 1 (1 Pro Bowls)

#8. Rod Walters (G)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #14 overall in 1976
- Drafted by: Kansas City Chiefs
- Years as a starter in NFL: 0

#7. Tristan Wirfs (T)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #13 overall in 2020
- Drafted by: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Years as a starter in NFL: 2 (1 Pro Bowls)

#6. Craig Clemons (DB)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #12 overall in 1972
- Drafted by: Chicago Bears
- Years as a starter in NFL: 4 (0 Pro Bowls)

#5. Chuck Long (QB)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #12 overall in 1986
- Drafted by: Detroit Lions
- Years as a starter in NFL: 1 (0 Pro Bowls)

#4. Tom Knight (DB)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #9 overall in 1997
- Drafted by: Arizona Cardinals
- Years as a starter in NFL: 3 (0 Pro Bowls)

#3. T.J. Hockenson (TE)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #8 overall in 2019
- Drafted by: Detroit Lions
- Years as a starter in NFL: 2 (1 Pro Bowls)

#2. Brandon Scherff (T)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #5 overall in 2015
- Drafted by: Washington Football Team
- Years as a starter in NFL: 7 (5 Pro Bowls)

#1. Robert Gallery (T)
- Draft pick: Round 1, #2 overall in 2004
- Drafted by: Oakland Raiders
- Years as a starter in NFL: 7 (0 Pro Bowls)

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