When is Mr. Irrelevant selected in the NFL Draft? A Brief History

Brock Purdy #13, Philadelphia Eagles. (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)
Brock Purdy #13, Philadelphia Eagles. (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images) /

Being the final player taken in the NFL Draft comes with its own spotlight.

The Philadelphia Eagles, in their history, have only owned and selected the final pick of the NFL Draft three times, so they can’t relate much to the Mr. Irrelevant hype machine. Their new extended rivals, the San Francisco 49ers, can. During last year’s selection meeting, with the 262nd selection, they selected Brock Purdy. We all know how that turned out, don’t we? Philly whooped Mr. Irrelevant and company in the NFC Championship Game.

The nickname for each draft’s final pick wasn’t introduced until 1976 when former Indianapolis Colts and San Francisco 49ers  wide receiver Paul Salata created the term. These days, Mr. Irrelevant is kind of a big deal.

He gets invited to spend a week in Newport Beach with his family. He gets a parade. He spends his time there doing activities that interest him. The lucky player also gets to go home with the Lowsman Trophy. Check it out below!

Salata’s daughter, Melanie Salata Fitch, has announced the last selection of the draft every year since 2014.

Who has the last pick in the NFL Draft in 2023?

As of right now, the Houston Texans own the last selection of the coming NFL Draft. As of now, that’s the 259th pick in the seventh round.

Which team has selected the most Mr. Irrelevant in their history?

The New York Giants have had the final pick of the draft eight times. That’s the most in NFL history; however, if you scroll through every draft that preceded the Mr. Irrelevant phrase’s coining in 1976, the Oakland/LA/Las Vegas Raiders have selected the most players at that spot with six total selections in their history.

The 49ers have taken Mr. Irrelevant four times. This marks the fourth time the Texans have been scheduled to select last. The Pittsburgh Steelers, Arizona Cardinals, and the Giants have all landed their Mr. Irrelevant three times.

Who are some of the notable last picks in the NFL Draft?

Mr. Irrelevant might have some challenges in making an NFL roster, but there are a few players who have shined in the NFL. Here’s a list.

Brock Purdy: Quarterback

The 49ers selected Brock Purdy as the last pick of the 2022 NFL Draft. Following injuries to both Trey Lance and Jimmy Garoppolo, he found himself catapulted from third-stringer to starter.

Lance suffered a season-ending ankle injury versus the Seattle Seahawks in Week 2. Garoppolo went down with an injury in the Week 13 game versus the Miami Dolphins, Purdy took the reins and never looked back.

1,374 passing yards, 13 touchdowns, and four interceptions were the result of his regular season. During the postseason, he won two games and led the Niners to the NFC Championship Game where he, unfortunately, got hurt in the 31-7 loss to the Eagles.

Ryan Succop: Kicker

The Kansas City Chiefs selected kicker Ryan Succop with the 256th pick in the 2009 Draft. He would win the starting job that season over Connor Barth.

He showed promise immediately and set a new Chiefs rookie record for the most field goal conversions (25). He also tied the NFL record that year for conversion percentage by a rookie (86.2%).

After playing five years in a K.C. jersey, he joined the Tennessee Titans and played there for six seasons before joining the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2020. Ironically, he helped the Bucs beat the Chiefs in Super Bowl LV.

Marty Moore: Linebacker

During the 1994 NFL Draft, Marty Moore claimed the Mr. Irrelevant moniker. The New England Patriots chose him with the 222nd overall selection.

Unlike Purdy or Succop, Moore’s career numbers aren’t very exciting. He tallied 173 tackles, one sack, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and three interceptions in eight NFL seasons.

Moore would make history though. In 2001, he was part of the Patriots team to win Super Bowl XXXVI, making him the first Mr. Irrelevant to do so.

Tae Crowder: Linebacker

During the 2020 NFL Draft, the New York Giants selected Tae Crowder as the 255th and final pick of the event. His best season came in 2021 when he led the G-Men with 130 tackles. He also forced a fumble and collected two interceptions in 17 games.

Crowder would tally 232 tackles during his first three NFL seasons. He signed with the Pittsburgh Steelers two days after Christmas in 2022.

Another draft approaches. Might we see another Brock Purdy, Tae Crowder or Ryan Succop emerge? The Texans have to be hoping that we will.