Nick Zakelj describes what it’s like living with 49ers QB Purdy originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area
SANTA CLARA — Quarterback Brock Purdy and offensive lineman Nick Zakelj met shortly after the 49ers selected both players on Day 3 of the 2022 NFL Draft.
They have been roommates during their first two seasons in the NFL after originally bonding over a mutual friend.
“There’s a small-world aspect of it all,” Zakelj told NBC Sports Bay Area on Thursday.
One of Purdy’s roommates during his time at Iowa State was linebacker Mike Rose.
Zakelj and Rose have known each other for nearly 20 years. They played in youth leagues together and were teammates at Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School in Brecksville, Ohio.
“That’s how we got that connection,” Zakelj said of Purdy. “And the friendship took off from there.”
Zakelj was a sixth-round draft pick from Fordham, while Purdy was the 262nd and final player selected.
Due to their draft positions, Zakelj’s four-year contract is scheduled to pay him $962,500 per season compared to Purdy’s annual scheduled pay of $934,250.
Purdy and Zakelj extended their living arrangement beyond their rookie season because of the cost of housing in the Bay Area, convenience and compatibility.
“People joke about having the starting quarterback as your roommate,” Zakelj said. “I think it’s funny from the outside.
“He’s still a very humble guy. He still has that work ethic that’s contributed to his success on the field.”
When they have some downtime from their jobs, Zakelj said he and Purdy are similar to many other recent college grads who are living under the same roof.
“We’ve started to grill out a little more,” Zakelj said. “We switch off. He’s got the upper hand on me right now. But we just hang out and watch movies here and there when we have free time from football.”
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