May 9, 2014
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Former University of Notre Dame offensive guard Chris Watt was selected with the 89th overall pick (19th choice of round three) in the 2014 NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers and was the fifth Fighting Irish player taken in this year's draft. Watt is the highest drafted Irish offensive guard since the Green Bay Packers chose Aaron Taylor with the 16th pick of the 1994 draft.
The five players chosen over the first three rounds of the NFL Draft is the most for Notre Dame since 1994 when the Irish set a school record with seven players selected in the top three rounds.
Watt is the eighth offensive guard in school history to be taken in the top three rounds of the NFL Draft. In addition Watt and Taylor, six other Irish offensive guards have been chosen in the first three rounds, including Bob Dahl (third round by the Cincinnati Bengals in 1991), Dave Huffman (second round by the Minnesota Vikings in 1979), Jim Reilly (third round by the Buffalo Bills in 1970), Tom Regner (first round by the Houston Oilers in 1967), George Goeddeke (third round by the Denver Broncos in 1967) and Jim Martin (second round by the Cleveland Browns in 1950).
Watt becomes the 14th Notre Dame player ever drafted by the San Diego Chargers.
Watt played in 47 straight games to open his Notre Dame career and started 34 consecutive games at left guard prior to missing the Navy game on Nov. 2, 2013, with a knee injury. He returned to lineup the following week at Pittsburgh and started the final three games of the '13 regular season, but suffered another knee injury in the regular-season finale at Stanford and missed the 2013 New Era Pinstripe Bowl victory over Rutgers.
Watt was part of a Notre Dame offensive line that allowed just eight sacks and ranked tied for second in the FBS in fewest sacks allowed in 2013. In fact, no team in the nation allowed fewer sacks and attempted more passes than the Irish (eight sacks on 382 pass attempts). Watt helped the Irish run the ball for a season-high 235 yards while not allowing a sack on 28 passing attempts in the victory over BYU (Nov. 23). He was invited to the Senior Bowl, but did not participate due to injury.
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