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Notre Dame Great Justin Tuck Retires

Justin Tuck - Notre Dame Sack Leader

Notre Dame’s all-time sack leader (and UHND’s official favorite follower on Twitter) is officially hanging up his cleats after a brilliant 11 year NFL career that saw the Irish great win two Super Bowls with the New York Giants before finishing it off with the Oakland Raiders. Tuck announced his retirement via social media on Monday. After months of praying and careful consideration, I have decided to retire from the game of football. I’ve had 11 great years and honestly I leave with very few regrets. I’m thankful to my family and close friends for their unwavering support. My beautiful ...

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Will Fuller Leaving Notre Dame for NFL Draft

Photo: Charles LeClaire // USA TODAY Sports

And another domino in the Notre Dame off-season has fallen.  Star wide receiver Will Fuller has announced that he intends on forgoing his senior season and has declare himself eligible for the 2016 NFL Draft – the second player (CJ Prosise being the other) in consecutive days to declare they would be leaving Notre Dame for the NFL with eligibility remaining. Back in November Fuller announced he would definitely be returning to Notre Dame for a senior season, but in the end, the allure of fulfilling his lifelong dream of playing in the NFL was too much to pass up. ...

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Jaylon Smith’s Injury Clouds NFL Future

Jaylon Smith Injury

The most unfortunate storyline from Notre Dame’s disappointing performance in the 2016 Fiesta Bowl was the nasty knee injury suffered by Jaylon Smith in the first quarter – an injury that so far has only been described as “significant”.  While the injury certainly impacted Notre Dame’s ability to contain Ohio State’s potent offense, the impact the injury could have on Smith’s draft stock is even more devastating. Coming into the Fiesta Bowl Smith was widely considered to be a lock for the top 10 and a potential top 5 pick in the spring should he declare for it and forgo his ...

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CJ Prosise Declares for NFL Draft

CJ Prosise - Notre Dame RB to NFL

The first domino of the Notre Dame off-season has fallen.  Senior running back CJ Prosise has decided to forgo a 5th year of eligibility and has declared for the 2016 NFL Draft.  The former safety and wide receiver became the first Notre Dame running back since Cierre Wood in 2011 to eclipse the 1,000 yard mark for Notre Dame with 1,032 yards and 11 touchdowns on the season. Prosise was supposed to be  change of pace hybrid running back for Notre Dame in 2015 but the season ending injury to Tarean Folston and suspension/subsequent transfer of Greg Bryant forced the ...

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Will Fuller Leaves Open Door to NFL

Will Fuller - Notre Dame WR

Notre Dame celebrated Team 127 last annual with the annual Echoes gala and while the night was highlighted by the myriad of awards Notre Dame hands out each year, the biggest news of the night came after the awards were all handed out.  Speaking with reporters after the event, Will Fuller left open the door for leaving for the NFL after stating last month he fully intended to return for a senior season. Will Fuller and C.J. Prosise said they're undecided about returning to Notre Dame in 2016. — Andrew Owens (@BGI_AndrewOwens) December 12, 2015 Just last month Fuller said ...

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Jaylon Smith: NFL Decision ’16

Jaylon Smith NFL Decision

Notre Dame still has one very important game left in the 2015 season with their Fiesta Bowl showdown with Ohio State, but that hasn’t stopped the speculation on the NFL futures of a number of Notre Dame players – specifically the five who applied for a NFL evaluation last week.  Over the next few days we’ll be examining each player’s individual situation and what impact it could have on the 2016 season. We are going to start off with the most pivotal of players who could leave Notre Dame early after the 2015 season – star linebacker Jaylon Smith. Buy ...

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Notre Dame Once Again A Pathway to the NFL

Photo: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Watching the NFL Draft became a painful endeavor for Irish fans after the departure of Notre Dame coaching legend, Lou Holtz. Notre Dame devolved into something of a run-on joke for NFL pundits who criticized everything ranging from the lack of production from Notre Dame alumni in the NFL to their increasingly dwindling number. And what made the criticisms really sting was their truthfulness. The thirteen NFL Drafts from 1998 to 2010 saw Notre Dame place only three players into the NFL as first round selections. To put this number in proper perspective, Lou Holtz had twelve first round draft ...

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Jerome Bettis, Tim Brown Elected to Pro Football Hall of Fame!

Pittsburgh Steelers former running back Jerome Bettis (left) and Oakland Raiders and Los Angeles Raiders former receiver Tim Brown react during a press conference to introduce the 2015 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductees at Symphony Hall. (Photo:  Kirby Lee // USA TODAY Sports)

Back in September I wrote that it has been long over due that Notre Dame legends Tim Brown and Jerome Bettis be elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.  On Saturday night, both Irish greats had their long wait for election to the HOF end when the pair was officially named as members of the 2015 Hall of Fame Class. Brown and Bettis join a 2015 class that as includes the late Junior Seau, Charles Haley, Will Shields, and Mike Tinglehoff and executives Ron Wolf and Bill Polian (father of former Notre Dame assistant coach Brian Polian). Brown and ...

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Injuries, Martin’s Rise Highlight 2014 Notre Dame Rookies

Dallas Cowboys guard Zack Martin (70) at training camp at the River Ridge Fields. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Despite a disappointing 2013 season, Notre Dame saw its roster from a season ago produce 8 NFL Draft picks in the 2014 NFL Draft including five picks within the first three rounds alone.  Not bad for a team that played in the Pinstripe Bowl and won just 9 games.  A year later, the deep Notre Dam rookie class has produced two main storylines – the rapid rise of Zack Martin to being an elite NFL lineman and injuries.  Lots of them. By popular demand from our comments section, here is a full rundown of how all of the Notre Dame ...

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It’s Time for Tim Brown, Jerome Bettis to Head to Canton

Tim Brown - Notre Dame Great WR

The preliminary ballot for the 2015 NFL Hall of Fame was announced on earlier this week and five Notre Dame greats are on the among the 100+ candidates vying for the maximum of eight enshrinees.  Two Irish legends, however, stand out from the group and are long over due for a trip to Canton next summer – Tim Brown and Jerome Bettis. It’s head scratching to me that an all-time great like Tim Brown hasn’t already made the trip to Canton.  Competition is tough every year for those precious eight spots, but the man’s resume screams that of being a ...

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Chris Watt Selected #89 Overall by San Diego Chargers

Chris Watt - San Diego Chargers 3rd Round Pick

Everyone knew that Louis Nix, Stephon Tuitt, and Zack Martin would be off the board in the first three rounds of the 2014 NFL Draft. Notre Dame got another somewhat surprise third round selection Friday night though when the San Diego Chargers selected Chris Watt #89 overall. Most mock drafts had Watt slated to be a fourth rounder, but the Chargers saw what Notre Dame fans have seen for the last four years – a damn good offensive lineman who has all the tools needed to be a long time starter in the NFL.  In our draft preview on Thursday ...

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Louis Nix’s Fall Ends at 83 Overall

Louis Nix's draft tumble stopped at #83 when the Houston Texans traded up to select him.  (Photo: Patrick Green/Icon SMI)

Louis Nix was once considered to be the highest rated Notre Dame player in the 2014 NFL Draft.  He ended up being the 4th Notre Dame player selected after falling all the way to midway through the 3rd round when the Houston Texans finally ended Nix’s draft free fall by trading up to select the jovial nose tackle. Up until recently, Nix was considering a potential first round pick but began to slip down draft boards after the season ended and ended up sliding all the way down to #83 overall where the Houston Texans may have gotten one of ...

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Troy Niklas Selected #52 by Arizona Cardinals

Troy Niklas - Notre Dame TE

Just as I put the finishing touches on the article of Stephon Tuitt being drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers noting that Troy Niklas could snap Notre Dame’s streak of producing 1st or 2nd round tight ends, the Arizona Cardinals made that statement null and void by taking Niklas #52 overall. In a surprising move, Niklas finds himself off of the draft board before teammate Louis Nix – a player many felt would be the first, not fourth Notre Dame player selected in the 2014 NFL Draft back in December.  Instead, Zack Martin, Tuitt, and Niklas are now all off the ...

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Stephon Tuitt Drafted 46th Overall by Pittsburgh Steelers

Stephon Tuitt - Pittsbrugh SteelersStephon Tuitt - Pittsbrugh Steelers

Day one of the NFL Draft did not go how Stephon Tuitt or Louis Nix had planned.  Both went undrafted on Thursday after leaving Notre Dame with eligibility remaining.  Stephon Tuitt didn’t have to wait too long Friday night to hear his name be called after the Pittsburgh Steelers selected him 46th overall. Tuitt’s slide could end up helping him out in the long run as he landed with a franchise steeped in defensive tradition.  The Pittsburgh Steelers have always produced elite defensive talent and Tuitt now joins that lineage as he begins his professional career in a city where ...

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Zack Martin Selected #16 by Dallas Cowboys

Notre Dame offensive tackle Zack Martin (70) looks for a block during the football game between the Purdue Boilermakers and Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette, IN. (Photo: Zach Bolinger/Icon SMI)

Zack Martin became the highest drafted Notre Dame offensive lineman in 25 years on Thursday night when the Dallas Cowboys selected him 16th overall in 2014 NFL Draft marking the third consecutive year Notre Dame produced a first round pick. NFL Network spent all 10 minutes leading up to Dallas’s pick debating whether or not the Cowboys should select Johnny Manzeil.  Instead, the Cowboys selected Martin to help protect incumbent and beleaguered starting quarterback Tony Romo. In Dallas, Martin has the opportunity to start from day one on a team that has been on the cusp on the playoffs the ...

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