Football: Five Former Ohio Football Players who have had NFL Careers

Football: Five Former Ohio Football Players who have had NFL Careers


Mike Mitchell lines up for a play against the Cleveland Browns.

With four Ohio University alums signing with NFL teams this year, The Post looks at a few Bobcats who’ve had solid NFL careers.

With four former Ohio football players getting a shot to make an NFL roster this summer, Ohio’s football program continues to churn out solid players who have a chance to play at the professional level.

Mike McQueen, Lucas Powell, Ian Wells and Keith Heitzman all have opportunities to play in the NFL, with McQueen and Wells signing as undrafted free agents with the San Diego Chargers and Detroit Lions, respectively.

Here are five former Ohio players who transitioned from games on Saturdays to pro ball on Sundays.

1. Mike Mitchell — Free Safety, Pittsburgh Steelers

Mitchell attended Ohio from 2005-2008, where he racked up 213 tackles and seven interceptions during his career. He was part of the 2005-2006 Mid-American Conference East division championship team during his freshman season, when Ohio lost to Southern Mississippi 28-7 in the 2007 GMAC Bowl. During Mitchell’s senior season, Ohio lost to Marshall 21-17 in the 2009 Little Caesars Pizza Bowl. After Mitchell’s time at Ohio, he was drafted in the second round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Oakland Raiders. Mitchell tallied 11 tackles during his rookie season with the Raiders, playing in 16 games. The former Bobcat has 267 tackles for his career so far, along with nine interceptions.

2. LaVon Brazill — Former Indianapolis Colts Wide Receiver

Brazill played for the Bobcats from 2007-2011, having a career season in 2011 that consisted of catching for 1,150 yards and 11 receiving touchdowns. Brazill is one of the best receivers Ohio has ever seen, leading the program with 2,515 career receiving yards. He’s also ranked third in program history for career touchdowns with 18, trailing Donte Foster and Terrence McCrae. Along with Brazill’s individual achievements, he was also part of the Ohio squad that won the 2011 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. After his time at Ohio, Brazill was taken in the sixth round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Indianapolis Colts. Brazill played for two years with the Colts and released in 2014 after failing multiple drug tests.

3. Todd Snyder — Former Atlanta Falcons Wide Receiver

Similar to Brazill, Todd Snyder is one of the best wide receivers in program history. Playing for the Bobcats from 1967-1969, Snyder tallied 2,241 receiving yards during his career, ranking second in the program for all-time receiving yards. Snyder is ranked fourth in program history for touchdowns, picking up 15 during his three-year career with Ohio. The Atlanta Falcons drafted Snyder in the third round of the 1970 NFL Draft. He played three years for them.

4. Dave Zastudil — Former Cleveland Browns Punter

Dave Zastudil punted for the Bobcats from 1998-2001, averaging 44.6 yards per punt for his career. Zastudil ranked sixth in the MAC for punting yards in 2001, going for 2,280 yards. The Baltimore Ravens drafted Zastudil in the fourth round of the 2002 NFL Draft. He played in the NFL from 2002-2014, playing for the Cleveland Browns and Arizona Cardinals along with the Baltimore Ravens. He punted for 38,016 yards in his career, averaging 43.7 yards per punt.

 5. Art Lewis — Former New York Giants Offensive Lineman

Art Lewis is the only former Ohio football player to be drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft in program history. After playing at Ohio from 1932-1935, he was drafted No. 9 overall by the New York Giants in the first round of the 1936 NFL Draft. Lewis played three seasons in the NFL, playing for the then Cleveland Rams along with the New York Giants. Lewis had one fumble return for a touchdown during his rookie year with the Giants.

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