Top 10 Most Successful Hawkeye Draft Picks in the Last 30 YearsPosted: April 25, 2011
With the 2011 NFL Draft starting Thursday, Hawkeye Locator counts down the Top 10 most successful Hawkeye draft picks over the last 30 years. While these 10 former Hawkeyes may not have been the highest draft picks, they all had (or are still currently having) illustrious pro careers. Lets start the countdown…
10. Tim Dwight: A fourth round selection by the Atlanta Falcons in 1998, Dwight spent 10 seasons in professional football. He helped the Falcons get to Super Bowl XXXIII and had a 94-yard kickoff return in the game. The former Hawkeye ranks among the Top 40 in NFL history in career kick return yardage.
9. Marv Cook: A third round pick by the New England Patriots in 1989, Cook caught 257 passes for 2,190 yards over the course of a seven year NFL career. He was a two-time Pro Bowler
8. Aaron Kampman: Now a member of the Jacksonville Jaguars, Kampman started his pro career with the Green Bay Packers in 2002. A fifth round draft pick, Kampman went to back-t0-back Pro Bowls in 2006 & 2007 and his 58 career sacks is 18th-best among active NFL players.
7. Bob Sanders: Despite an injury plagued NFL career, Sanders has dominated on the field when he’s healthy. As a safety for the Indianapolis Colts, he was named to two Pro Bowl squads (2005 & 2007) and helped the Colts to victory in Super Bowl XLI. The former Hawkeye was named GMC and AP Defensive Player of the Year in 2007.
6. John Alt: The former Hawkeye offensive lineman was the 21st overall pick in the 1984 NFL Draft, selected by the Kansas City Chiefs. Alt spent his entire 13-year career with the Chiefs and was selected to two Pro Bowls (1992 & 1993). He joined fellow former Hawkeye Ed Podolak in the Chiefs Hall of Fame in 2002.
5. Nate Kaeding: In 2004, Kaeding became the first and only Hawkeye kicker ever selected in the NFL Draft. The San Diego Chargers kicker is a two-time Pro Bowler and is the most accurate field goal kicker in NFL history (86.5%).
4. Dallas Clark: The Indianapolis Colts made Clark the 24th overall pick in 2003 and he hasn’t disappointed. The former Hawkeye tight end went to the Pro Bowl in 2009 and helped the Colts become Super Bowl Champions in 2007. Clark’s 44 career touchdowns ranks third among NFL tight ends.
3. Merton Hanks: San Francisco drafted Hanks in the fifth round of the 1991 NFL Draft. The selection was a steal for the 49ers. Hanks would eventually appear in four Pro Bowls (1994-1997) and start at safety in Super Bowl XXIX. He led San Francisco with seven interceptions during the team’s Super Bowl Championship run in 1994.
2. Reggie Roby: Only one Iowa punter has ever been taken in the NFL Draft. That punter was Reggie Roby. Known for his high leg kick and long hangtimes, Roby was picked by the Miami Dolphins in the sixth round of the 1983 NFL Draft. The punter went to three Pro Bowls and was a seven-time All-Pro selection. Roby ranks among the top 20 in NFL history in career punts (992) and punting yards (42,951).
1. Andre Tippett: One of only three Hawkeyes in the NFL Hall of Fame, Tippett spent his entire pro career with the New England Patriots. The linebacker was a five-time Pro Bowler and a member of the 1980’s All-Decade Team. Tippett’s 100 career sacks is 25th-best in NFL history.