AMES – Eight former Iowa State football players have made NFL rosters for the 2022-23 season, which kicks off Thursday evening.
Allen Lazard enters his fifth season with the Green Bay Packers. Lazard, an Urbandale, Iowa, native, has 109 career receptions and 14 career touchdown catches while becoming a favorite target of quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Lazard played for the Cyclones from 2014-17 and remains the school’s all-time leader for receptions (241), receiving yards (3,360) and 100-yard receiving games (12).
David Montgomery is one of three former Cyclone running backs on NFL rosters, entering his fourth season with the Chicago Bears. Montgomery, a third-round pick in 2019 and a Cincinnati, Ohio, native, has played in 44 career games. He’s been a model of consistency for the Bears, rushing for more than 845 yards in all three seasons and topping out with 1,070 yards in 2020. He has 21 career rushing touchdowns. As a Cyclone, Montgomery rushed for 2,925 yards in three seasons.
Kene Nwangwu was a fourth round pick of the Minnesota Vikings in the 2021 Draft and became a home run threat in his first season. The Frisco, Texas, native returned two kicks for touchdowns in his rookie campaign and figures to see his role increased on offense in 2022. Nwangwu had four rushing touchdowns for the Cyclones as a senior in 2020.
Five Cyclones from last year’s team made an NFL roster this season, led by second-round pick Breece Hall with the New York Jets. Hall, a Wichita, Kansas, native, wrapped up his outstanding three seasons at Iowa State in 2021, ranking second in rushing yards with 3,941, while setting the school record with 50 rushing TDs and an NCAA record 24 consecutive games with a touchdown on the ground.
Brock Purdy, a Gilbert, Arizona, native, is on the San Francisco 49ers roster after being picked in the seventh round of the NFL Draft. Purdy ended his Cyclone career owning or sharing 32 school records and cementing himself as the winningest quarterback in school history (30-17).
Tight end Charlie Kolar starts his rookie season for the Baltimore Ravens on the injured reserve but is expected back in the near future. The Norman, Oklahoma, native, was a fourth round pick of the Ravens after being a three-time All-American at Iowa State. He hauled in 168 career receptions with 23 of them going for touchdowns.
The Denver Broncos picked Enyi Uwazurike in the fourth round of the NFL Draft and the Detroit, Michigan, native, earned a spot on the 53-man roster. Uwazurike was one of the top defensive linemen in the Big 12 Conference, earning all-league honors three times and finishing his career with 15.0 sacks and 34.5 tackles for a loss.
Des Moines native Jake Hummel made the Los Angeles Rams roster as an undrafted free agent after having an outstanding camp in which he led the team with 22 preseason tackles, a record according to L.A. coach Sean McVay. Hummel worked his way from special teams performer in 2017 to an All-Big 12 player his final two seasons for the Cyclones.
Matt Leo (Philadelphia Eagles) and Chase Allen (Chicago Bears) have also earned spots on their team’s practice squad, while Dylan Soehner (New Orleans Saints) is on the physically unable to perform list while he recovers from injury.