Notre Dame football all-time Lou Holtz team DE: Renaldo Wynn
1997 NFL Draft: Round 1, Pick 21
Jacksonville Jaguars, 1997–2001
Washington Redskins, 2002–2006
New Orleans Saints, 2007
New York Giants, 2008
Washington Redskins, 2009
Omaha Nighthawks, 2010
Renaldo Wynn was an All-Rookie during his first NFL season and would go on to play for 14 seasons professionally, but his time at Notre Dame will ultimately define his greatness in the sport as opposed to an NFL career that peaked in his youth.
Wynn was honored as the Fighting Irish’s Most Valuable Player his fifth season — the Chicago native redshirted his freshman year in South Bend — and was that college football season’s Lineman of the Year.
Notre Dame football all-time Lou Holtz team DE: Oliver Gibson
1995 NFL Draft: Round 4, Pick 120
Pittsburgh Steelers, 1995–1998
Cincinnati Bengals, 1999–2003
Oliver Gibson was a solid hand in the NFL, having amassed 243 tackles, 17.5 sacks, and an interception during his nine-year career at the pro level. At Notre Dame, Gibson, like Wynn, repped the Chicago area well.
Sticking on with two AFC North rivals in the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals, Gibson will go down as a member of the Fighting Irish’s fearsome defensive front more than either of his NFL employers.
Notre Dame football all-time Lou Holtz team DT: Chris Zorich
1991 NFL Draft: Round 2, Pick 49
Chicago Bears, 1991-1997
Washington Redskins, 1997
Chris Zorich’s Notre Dame career peaked at the 1991 Orange Bowl when he was named MVP of the game. There were many great memories though, not for opposing QBs, RBs, TEs, and WRs, but for the Fighting Irish faithful during a four-year career that saw him named a consensus All-American twice.
Zorich wasn’t quite the same force in the NFL, but he has continued to be a proud ND alum who even went back to school in 1993 — while he was still a member of the Chicago Bears — to receive a J.D. from the university.
Notre Dame football all-time Lou Holtz team DT: Bryant Young
1994 NFL Draft: Round 1, Pick 7
San Francisco 49ers, 1994–2007
Bryant Young didn’t have the collegiate accomplishments Zorich did — though being named an All-American “just” once is certainly nothing to sleep on either — but he became a San Francisco 49ers legend by being named as an All-Pro 4x and helping lead the franchise to a Super Bowl XXIX victory in 1994/1995.
With that said, that 1993 senior year in South Bend was special: Young amassed 6.5 sacks and 67 tackles en route to an All-American Honorable Mention.