Brock Purdy’s rise from a member of last year’s East-West Shrine Bowl roster to the top of the NFL news cycle has become the most significant storyline for an NFL rookie this season.

Just one year since Purdy joined a number of aspiring NFL hopefuls at the 2022 Shrine Bowl in Las Vegas, Purdy has now lead the San Francisco 49ers to within one game of the Super Bowl after leading the ‘Niners to an 8-0 record since taking over the starting quarterback role.

“After an outstanding college career, we fully expected Brock Purdy to be a leader, handle an NFL offense, and be a consistent passer during the week of the Shrine Bowl practices. But he showed during that week rare decisiveness, attention to detail, and confidence that definitely foreshadowed his now already blossoming NFL career as a feature quarterback,” said Eric Galko, East-West Shrine Bowl Director of Football Operations and Player Personnel. “Looking back, it was clear he was destined for a long NFL career and would seize on any opportunity given.”

Purdy was chosen by the 49ers this past April as the last pick of the final round of the NFL Draft, a position that has become known as “Mr. Irrelevant.” Following injuries to quarterbacks Trey Lance and former Shrine Bowl star Jimmy Garoppolo, Purdy was thrust into the starting role this season.

On December 11, 2022, Purdy became the only quarterback in his first career start to beat a team led by Tom Brady, when the 49ers defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 35–7. Purdy finished the game with 185 passing yards and 2 passing touchdowns, along with a 2-yard rushing touchdown. After the game, the 49ers sent out a complimentary tweet re-naming Purdy “Mr. Relevant.”

He wasn’t highly recruited by college football programs but found a home at Iowa State. Similar to his high school comeback, Purdy started his Iowa State career an underdog as the third-string quarterback. The Cyclones’ starting quarterback suffered an injury early in the season, and his backup struggled. So, Purdy’s number was called, and he played 10 games as a true freshman.

Purdy finished his Iowa State career as the winningest QB in school history (30-17) and as the sole or joint owner of 32 school records, including passing yards (12,170), total offense (13,347), TD passes (81), TDs responsible for (100), completions (993), passing efficiency (151.1) and completion percentage (67.7).


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