Bulaga Goes in the First Round to 'Titletown'

April 22, 2010

Bulaga NFL Draft Video (ESPN) | Bulaga NFL Draft Video (NFL Network)

IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa All-American offensive tackle Bryan Bulaga was selected with the 23rd pick in the first round by the Green Bay Packers in the NFL Draft on Thursday in New York City.

Bulaga is the 34th Hawkeye to play under head coach Kirk Ferentz to be drafted into the NFL. He is the fourth first-round selection and the first since linebacker Chad Greenway was taken by Minnesota with the 17th pick in the 2006 draft. The other former UI players taken in the first round that played under Ferentz are Robert Gallery (Oakland, 2004) and Dallas Clark (Indianapolis, 2003).

Bulaga was named Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year after helping the Hawkeyes to a record of 11-2 and a victory in the FedEx Orange Bowl. He is the first Iowa offensive lineman drafted since Seth Olsen was chosen by Denver in the fourth round a year ago. Bulaga is the ninth offensive lineman drafted during Ferentz’s tenure as head coach that began in 1999.

What are the experts saying?

” Kirk Ferentz, his specialty is offensive line. He’s a heck of a head coach, but he gets these offensive linemen out of Iowa ready for the National Football League, from a technique and fundamental standpoint.”
Mel Kiper, Jr.
ESPN NFL Draft Analyst

Bulaga is a well-rounded, physical blocker who can hold his own in pass protection and maul in the run game. After a rough start to his junior season, which included some missed games due to a thyroid condition, Bulaga closed it out with a bang by holding Georgia Tech’s Derrick Morgan without a sack in the FedEx Orange Bowl matchup. Bulaga is characterized as a smart, competitive, hard-working team leader.

At 6-foot-6, 312 pounds, Bulaga has prototypical size to play either tackle position as a professional, but it’s his intangibles that made him an elite prospect.

Bulaga is the third Hawkeye offensive lineman selected in the first round by the Packers in the modern draft era, joining Ron Hallstrom (1982) and Ross Verba (1997). Green Bay also selected UI quarterback Randy Duncan in the first round of the 1959 draft.

The selection of Bulaga marks the 33rd consecutive season that Iowa has had a player chosen in the NFL Draft.

Bulaga, who is just 21 years old and started for the UI as a true freshman in 2007, is a native of Crystal Lake, Ill., and a graduate of Marian Central Catholic High School.

2010 NFL Draft
Round 1 Bryan Bulaga Green Bay Offensive line
2009 NFL Draft
Round 3 Shonn Greene New York Jets Running back
Round 3 Bradley Fletcher St. Louis Defensive back
Round 4 Seth Olsen Denver Offensive line
Round 6 Brandon Myers Oakland Tight end
2008 NFL Draft
Round 3 Charles Godfrey Carolina Defensive back
Round 4 Kenny Iwebema Arizona Defensive end
Round 6 Mike Humpal Pittsburgh Linebacker
2007 NFL Draft
Round 3 Marshal Yanda Baltimore Offensive line
Round 4 Scott Chandler San Diego Tight end
Round 7 Mike Elgin New England Offensive line
2006 NFL Draft
Round 1 Chad Greenway Minnesota Linebacker
Round 3 Abdul Hodge Green Bay Linebacker
2005 NFL Draft
Round 2 Matt Roth Miami Defensive end
Round 2 Jonathan Babineaux Atlanta Defensive line
Round 4 Sean Considine Philadelphia Defensive back
Round 6 Tony Jackson Seattle Tight end
Round 6 Pete McMahon Oakland Offensive line
2004 NFL Draft
Round 1 Robert Gallery Oakland Offensive line
Round 2 Bob Sanders Indianapolis Defensive back
Round 3 Nate Kaeding San Diego Place kicker
Round 7 Jared Clauss Tennessee Defensive line
Round 7 Erik Jensen St. Louis Tight end
2003 NFL Draft
Round 1 Dallas Clark Indianapolis Tight end
Round 2 Eric Steinbach Cincinnati Offensive line
Round 2 Bruce Nelson Carolina Center
Round 5 Derek Pagel New York Jets Defensive back
Round 5 Ben Sobieski Buffalo Offensive line
2002 NFL Draft
Round 2 Ladell Betts Washington Running back
Round 5 Aaron Kampman Green Bay Defensive line
Round 6 Kahlil Hill Atlanta Wide receiver
2001 NFL Draft
Round 6 Kevin Kasper Denver Wide receiver
2000 NFL Draft
Round 5 Austin Wheatley New Orleans Tight end
Round 6 Matt Bowen St. Louis Defensive back