Embracing Challenge: Easton Stick’s Journey Through Adversity

In the second consecutive season of many NFL teams having a revolving door at quarterback, Easton Stick is one of the latest unproven backups thrust into a starting gig.

The Los Angeles Chargers QB is replacing Justin Herbert, who was lost for the year with a finger injury, and comes from a winning tradition at North Dakota State.

“I understand North Dakota State isn’t the National Football League but I’m used to winning,” said Stick, who went 49-3 in college, and won four FCS titles. He is the record holder for most wins by a starting quarterback in NCAA DI FCS history.

However, the 2019 fifth-round draft pick has seen very limited action in his pro career — appearing in only two games.

Stick isn’t the lone NFL QB to make the league out of NDSU; Carson Wentz and Trey Lance are the others. All three of them have won national championships, but no Super Bowls. Wentz had some success in Philly before being injured and replaced by Nick Foles, who led the Philadelphia Eagles to a Super Bowl win over the New England Patriots. Lance was the No. 3 pick of the 2021 NFL Draft but is already on his second team.

But we’ve also recently seen Mr. Irrelevant Brock Purdy and the undrafted Tommy DeVito find success with their teams, and perhaps Stick leads the Bolts to a few W’s. But since Stick’s arrival in L.A., the Chargers are 36-43. 

NDSU has actually produced several other contributors; as of August 2023, 10 players on 53-man active NFL rosters came from NDSU. While it might be a tenth of Alabama’s players in the NFL, the next closest FCS team only has four.