BREAKING: McDonald drafted 15th overall in the NFL Draft


Jacob Rice

ISU linebacker Will McDonald IV watches the Baylor defense before the snap at the ISU vs. Baylor football game. Sept. 24, 2022.

Iowa State edge Will McDonald IV made history Thursday night after the pass rusher was drafted No. 15 overall by the New York Jets.

McDonald ended a 50-year first round drought for Iowa State, becoming the first Cyclone taken since George Amundson’s 1973 selection to the Houston Oilers. His length, flexibility and college production were major selling points for the Iowa State edge.

With the pick, McDonald joins former Cyclones, running back Breece Hall and wide receiver Allen Lazard, in New York. The Jets also made headlines with the acquisition of Aaron Rodgers in the offseason, as the team continues to build toward playoff contention.

During his time at Iowa State, McDonald was a consistent threat for opposing quarterbacks. He broke the all-time Big 12 sack record in 2022, surpassing Von Miller with 34 total sacks. McDonald also accounted for 123 tackles, including 78 solo tackles in his career.

McDonald was considered one of the top edge rushers in the Big 12 in his final couple of years at Iowa State, but his draft stock didn’t start picking up steam until after the 2022 season.

During the 2022 Senior Bowl, McDonald was hardly blocked during one-on-one drills, even when facing some of the most talented offensive line prospects. His length and flexibility was put on full display during the week, and his combine and pro day performances solidified his position as a potential first-round pick.

McDonald looks to be an early contributor for the Jets, as Iowa State could potentially see three Cyclones in the starting lineup.