Lucas Niang
No. 67 – Kansas City Chiefs
Position:Offensive tackle
Personal information
Born: (1998-08-18) August 18, 1998 (age 23)
New York, New York
Height:6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
Weight:328 lb (149 kg)
Career information
High school:New Canaan High School
(New Canaan, CT)
College:TCU
NFL Draft:2020 / Round: 3 / Pick: 96
Career history
Roster status:Active
Career highlights and awards
  • 2nd Team All-Big 12 (2018)
Career NFL statistics as of 2021
Games played:12
Games started:9
Player stats at NFL.com · PFR

Lucas Niang (born August 18, 1998) is an American football offensive tackle for the Kansas City Chiefs of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Texas Christian University (TCU) and was drafted by the Chiefs in the third round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

Early years

Niang grew up in New Canaan, Connecticut, where he became a football star at New Canaan High School. He was born in New York and lived in Geneva, Switzerland from the ages of 4 to 6. His family moved to New Canaan, Connecticut when they returned to the US. Niang started to play football with the Pop Warner league in New Canaan in 3rd grade. Niang also played basketball and tennis growing up. Playing both offensive and defensive line in high school, he helped lead the Rams to state championships in 3 straight seasons from 2013 to 2015, before committing to play college football at TCU. At New Canaan, Niang was a two time All-FCIAC selection as a Junior and Senior, and during his Senior Season was an All-State First Team Selection, from both the Coaches Association and New Haven Register.[1]

College career

Niang was highly recruited coming out of high school. He had around 40 scholarship offers from schools including TCU, Penn State, Auburn, Miami, and Georgia, and decided to enroll at TCU. After enrolling at TCU in 2016, Niang played in 12 of the Horned Frogs' 13 games as a true freshman that fall. He became a starter midway through his sophomore season in 2017, helping lead the Frogs to the program's first-ever berth in the Big 12 Championship Game and a win in the 2017 Alamo Bowl over Stanford.[2]

Starting all 13 games at right tackle for TCU as a junior in 2018, Niang didn't allow a sack the entire season[3] and earned 2nd Team All-Big 12 honors [4] before helpling lead the Frogs to a win over California in the 2018 Cheez-It Bowl.[5]

Prior to his senior season, Niang was named 1st Team Preseason All-Big 12,[6] and The Athletic named him as one of the top offensive linemen in college football.[7] Hall of Fame NFL executive Gil Brandt has named Niang as one of the top offensive line prospects for the 2020 NFL Draft,[8] and ESPN draft expert Todd McShay has projected Niang as a first-round selection and best offensive tackle in the 2020 NFL Draft.[9]

Niang was forced to end his senior season early after TCU pulled out an upset win against the University of Texas in late October 2019. He had been advised by his doctor the week before to get surgery to repair a torn hip labrum he had been playing through since the beginning of the season to avoid the risk of a more severe injury.

Niang played as a true freshman in 12 games out of 13. He became a starter as a sophomore and in his 28 games and three-year span as a starter for TCU, he never allowed a single sack. Over that period, he only had two holding calls and no false starts.[10]

Professional career

Pre-draft measurables
Height Weight Arm length Hand span
6 ft 6 in
(1.98 m)
315 lb
(143 kg)
34+14 in
(0.87 m)
10+12 in
(0.27 m)
All values from NFL Combine[11]

Niang was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs in the third round with the 96th overall pick of the 2020 NFL Draft.[12] On August 6, 2020, he announced he would opt out of the 2020 season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[13]

Niang was named the Chiefs starting right tackle to begin the 2021 season. He started seven of the first nine games, missing two with a shoulder injury, before suffering a ribs injury in Week 9. He missed the next four games. He made his first start at left tackle in Week 17 but suffered a torn patellar tendon in the game. He was placed on injured reserve on January 7, 2022.[14]

Personal

Niang's parents moved to the United States from France and he is fluent in his parent's native language of French, despite being born in New York.[12] His father is from France, and his mother from the Ivory Coast.[15]

References

  1. ^ Parelli, Anthony E. (January 27, 2016). "Niang announces he'll play football at TCU". New Canaan Advertiser. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  2. ^ "TCU Comes Back to Win Valero Alamo Bowl". GoFrogs.com. December 29, 2017. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  3. ^ Davison, Drew (July 28, 2019). "NFL's top overall pick? TCU's Lucas Niang determined to prove he's worthy". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  4. ^ "2018 All-Big 12 Football Honors Announced". Big 12. November 28, 2018. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  5. ^ "Frogs Overtime Winners in Cheez-It Bowl". GoFrogs.com. December 27, 2018. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  6. ^ "2019 Big 12 Preseason Football Honors Announced". Big 12. July 9, 2019. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  7. ^ Brugler, Dane (August 13, 2019). "NFL Draft Summer Scouting: Offensive tackle will be a potential juggernaut position next April". The Athletic. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  8. ^ Clark, Jeremy (May 17, 2019). "TCU's Lucas Niang considered a top OL by Gil Brandt". 247Sports.com. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  9. ^ McShay, Todd (August 14, 2019). "McShay's preseason 2020 NFL draft rankings: Top 32 prospects". ESPN.com. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  10. ^ Pauline, Tony (October 27, 2019). "Breaking News: TCU's Lucas Niang to have season ending surgery". Pro Football Network. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  11. ^ "Lucas Niang Combine Profile". NFL.com. Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  12. ^ a b McMullen, Matt (April 24, 2020). "Five Things to Know About Chiefs' Third-Round Pick OL Lucas Niang". Chiefs.com. Retrieved April 25, 2020.
  13. ^ Smith, Michael David (August 6, 2020). "Chiefs rookie Lucas Niang opts out". Pro Football Talk. NBC Sports.
  14. ^ "Chiefs place RT Lucas Niang on injured reserve". Chiefs Wire. USA Today. January 7, 2022.
  15. ^ "FEATURED: Lucas Niang". TCU Athletics.