– Brock Purdy, the last pick of the 2022 NFL Draft, is the most high-profile final selection in league history.
– Purdy has surpassed expectations, earning a Super Bowl berth as quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers.
– The term Mr. Irrelevant, symbolizing the final pick in every draft, has gained new attention due to Purdy’s success.
– A victory in Super Bowl LVIII would make Purdy the first Mr. Irrelevant to win the Super Bowl as a quarterback.
Redefining Mr. Irrelevant’s Relevance
Brock Purdy, the last selection in the 2022 NFL Draft, has reversed the narrative around being “Mr. Irrelevant.” The 24-year-old has risen to fame as the quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, winning four playoff games and earning a Super Bowl berth in his career. This monumental ascent has led to a re-evaluation of the historical term “Mr. Irrelevant.”
An Unforgettable Journey from Last Pick to Limelight
The “Mr. Irrelevant” anecdote was first coined in 1976 by the late Paul Salata, a former NFL wide receiver. The title humorously recognizes the final pick in every draft. Despite never being a final pick himself, Salata used to announce the “Mr. Irrelevant” pick at every draft until 2014, when the mantle was handed down to his daughter.
Salata’s Legacy Beyond Mr. Irrelevant Status
In addition to the moniker, Salata initiated an annual event called “Irrelevant Week.” In this event, each year’s “Mr. Irrelevant” gets to visit Disneyland, participate in a roast, and receive a playful Lowsman Trophy, mimicking the player on a Heisman Trophy making a fumble. Salata believed this event was moral-building, celebrating equality and emphasizing the underdogs in the NFL.
Purdy’s Pillar of Perseverance
Typically, the last pick in any draft faces obstacles in earning their place on an NFL roster. Purdy’s selection, who was ranked 262nd overall from Iowa State, was no exception. However, his breakthrough came in December 2022 when two quarterbacks from the 49ers faced significant injuries.
Purdy led his team with a stunning 5-0 result in his rookie regular season, while also clinching two more playoff games. His ascent didn’t stop there: he became the first Mr. Irrelevant to successfully throw a regular-season touchdown pass, the first to start, and also to win a playoff game as a quarterback.
Purdy’s Chart-Topping Performance
As a full-time starter, Purdy continued to defy odds, displaying exceptional play with an impressive passing rate of 4,280 yards and 31 touchdowns against 11 interceptions for the season. His performance record places him at an NFL-best 113.0 passer rating.
Purdy is on the brink of making history. A win against the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LVIII would mark him as the first Mr. Irrelevant to claim a Super Bowl victory as a quarterback.
Previous Mr. Irrelevant Achievements
Comparatively, other individuals labeled as Mr. Irrelevant have had their share of success. Patriots linebacker Marty Moore is the first Mr. Irrelevant to win a Super Bowl, Buccaneers kicker Ryan Succop won the Super Bowl with a perfect field-goal and extra-point record, and linebacker Tae Crowder led the Giants with 130 tackles in one season. However, none have made a wave as massive as Purdy’s.
Purdy’s Inspirational Attitude
Purdy looks at his underdog status as a “chip on his shoulder.” Embracing the narrative, he aims to change public perception and create awe-inspiring moments. Brock Purdy, once tagged irrevocably as Mr. Irrelevant, continues to defy the odds and inspire many other underdog athletes with his journey. His success has revolutionized the perspective of many towards the last pick in the NFL Draft and made the term “Mr. Irrelevant” a symbol of potential and perseverance.