It’s been something Iowa fans have expected since before the 2018 season kicked off, but Noah Fant made his declaration to the NFL Draft official on Friday morning via an announcement on Twitter. The junior will skip Iowa’s bowl game and forgo his final season of eligibility.
Fant departs the Iowa program as the career touchdown leader for a tight end. All told, he finishes his Iowa career with 78 receptions for 1,083 yards and 19 touchdowns. He was a first-team all-Big Ten player in 2018 after garnering third-team honors in 2017.
Now, he focuses on the NFL Draft, where he’s considered by many experts to be the top player at this position. An athletic freak, he’ll definitely wow scouts at the combine and improve his grades thusly, and it wouldn’t be a surprise for him to end up as a high first round pick by someone who needs a tight end.
As for where Iowa goes, it’ll be interesting to see what T.J. Hockenson does in the coming days and months. He, too, can declare early for the NFL Draft and if he does, Iowa will need to replace two NFL-caliber, first-team all-Big Ten tight ends in the same season. While this program is seemingly never short on tight ends, there could certainly be a huge dip in talent and production from the position in 2019. Fant was a large part of Iowa’s success the last couple years, and regardless of whether or not Hockenson declares, Iowa will sorely miss his presence and production.
Congratulations to Noah Fant on a fantastic Iowa career, and best of luck in the NFL. We’ll all be rooting for your success!