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Christian Hackenberg

Christian Blaize Hackenberg (born February 14, 1995) is an American football quarterback who is currently a free agent. He played college football at Penn State, and was drafted by the New York Jets in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft. He was also a member of the Oakland Raiders, Philadelphia Eagles, and Cincinnati Bengals.

Christian Hackenberg
refer to caption
Hackenberg with the Memphis Express in 2019
Free agent
Personal information
Born: (1995-02-14) February 14, 1995 (age 24)
Lehighton, Pennsylvania
Height:6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight:228 lb (103 kg)
Career information
High school:Fork Union Military Academy (Fork Union, Virginia)
College:Penn State
NFL Draft:2016 / Round: 2 / Pick: 51
Career history
 * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Player stats at
Player stats at PFR

Following his stint in the NFL, Hackenberg was drafted by the Memphis Express in the second round of 2019 AAF QB Draft.

Early yearsEdit

Hackenberg is from Palmyra, Virginia[2] and attended Fluvanna County High School for his freshman year before transferring to Fork Union Military Academy in Fork Union, Virginia. He was ranked as the best pro-style quarterback recruit by ESPN,[3] and the second best pro-style quarterback recruit by[4]

US college sports recruiting information for high school athletes
Name Hometown High school / college Height Weight 40 Commit date
Christian Hackenberg
Fork Union, VA Fork Union Military Academy 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 212 lb (96 kg) 4.84 Feb 29, 2012 
Recruiting star ratings: Scout:    Rivals:    247Sports:     ESPN grade: 88
Overall recruiting rankings:
  • ‡ Refers to 40 yard dash
  • Note: In many cases, Scout, Rivals, 247Sports, and ESPN may conflict in their listings of height, weight and 40 time.
  • In these cases, the average was taken. ESPN grades are on a 100-point scale.


  • "2013 Team Ranking".

Hackenberg committed to Penn State after being recruited by a tandem of Penn State coaches – quarterbacks coach Charlie Fisher and running backs coach/recruiting coordinator Charles London, turning down offers from Alabama, UConn, Florida, Rutgers, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.[4] Scouted as a five-star recruit by both and, and the No. 2 pro-style quarterback in the nation, Hackenberg was described as an accurate, drop-back passer with ample athleticism who had a high ceiling.[5]

College careerEdit

As a true freshman in 2013, Hackenberg was named the team's starting quarterback.[6] In the first three games of the season, he twice earned Big Ten Conference Freshman of the Week accolades, with a 72-percent completion percentage, 851 yards, 4 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. In a game against Eastern Michigan, he set the Penn State single-game record for passing yards by a freshman with 311 (previous record of 280 held by Zack Mills).[7] Coach Bill O'Brien commended Hackenberg's leadership of the team, noting that the team fed off his calm demeanor, in contrast to O'Brien's fiery personality. He did note that Hackenberg made some mistakes typical of younger players, but he was on the fast track to grasping O'Brien's complex offensive schemes.[8] Hackenberg was a five-time Big Ten Freshman of the Week and was named the 2013 Big Ten Football Freshman of the Year.[9]

Hackenberg broke ten school freshman records, and one overall Penn State record in 2013.

On January 2, 2016, Hackenberg officially declared for the 2016 NFL Draft.[10]


NCAA career statistics
Penn State Nittany Lions
Season Passing Rushing
GP GS Comp Att Yards Pct. TD Int QB rating Att Yards Avg TD
2013 12 12 231 392 2,955 58.9 20 10 134.0 49 −68 −1.4 4
2014 13 13 270 484 2,977 55.8 12 15 109.4 93 −94 −1.0 0
2015 13 13 184 345 2,386 53.3 16 6 123.8 65 −84 −1.3 2
NCAA career totals 38 38 685 1,221 8,318 56.1 48 31 121.4 207 -246 -1.2 6


Professional careerEdit

According to ESPN's Todd McShay, Hackenberg was the fifth-best quarterback among those eligible to enter the draft.[12]

Pre-draft measurables
Ht Wt Arm length Hand size 40-yard dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert jump Broad Wonderlic
6 ft 4 in
(1.93 m)
223 lb
(101 kg)
32 in
(0.81 m)
9 in
(0.23 m)
4.78 s 1.64 s 2.82 s 4.33 s 7.04 s 31 in
(0.79 m)
9 ft 5 in
(2.87 m)
All values from NFL Combine[14]

New York JetsEdit

2016 seasonEdit

The New York Jets selected Hackenberg in the second round (51st overall) of the 2016 NFL Draft.[15] On May 12, 2016, the New York Jets signed Hackenberg to a four-year, $4.66 million contract featuring a $1.6 million signing bonus.[16]

Hackenberg made his preseason debut on August 27, 2016 during the third preseason game against the New York Giants, where he completed 6 out of 16 passes for 105 yards with a touchdown and an interception.[17] He also played in the preseason finale against the Philadelphia Eagles on September 1, 2016, where he was 11 for 31 with 54 passing yards and an interception returned for a touchdown.[18]

Hackenberg began the regular season as the Jets' fourth-string quarterback.[19] He was inactive for the first 15 regular season games, and was only active in the season finale due to a decimated depth chart. Throughout the season, he remained on the bench behind starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, who was benched for ineffective play, Geno Smith, who went on season-ending injured reserve list, and Bryce Petty, who also suffered a season-ending injury.[20] Hackenberg did not play a down in the 2016 season.[21]

2017 seasonEdit

Hackenberg started the Jets' 2017 training camp competing with Josh McCown and Bryce Petty for the starting quarterback job.[22]

Hackenberg started two preseason games and played in all four. In the first game against the Tennessee Titans, he was 18 of 25 for 127 yards and averaged 5.1 yards per attempt.[23] Hackenberg got the start against the Detroit Lions in the second game and went 2 of 6 for 14 yards before being replaced by Petty in the first half.[24] He also started in the Jets' third preseason game at the New York Giants, posting stats of 8/15 for 60 yards, and two pick sixes. He was replaced by Petty in the second half, but later returned after Petty was injured. In his second stint in the game, Hackenberg went 4 of 6 with a touchdown against the Giants' backups.[25] Hackenberg came in for McCown in the final game against the Eagles. He finished 10 of 22 for 105 yards and a touchdown.[26]

Hackenberg was beat out by Petty for the backup spot behind McCown during the preseason. Hackenberg was active as McCown's backup for the first game of the season due to Petty being injured, but moved to third string when Petty returned the next week.[27] Hackenberg was inactive the duration of the Jets' season until McCown broke his hand week 14 at the Denver Broncos and was placed on injured reserve.[28] Hackenberg was active the final three games as Petty's backup. He did not play a down in the 2017 season.[29]

Oakland RaidersEdit

On May 22, 2018, the Jets traded Hackenberg to the Oakland Raiders for a conditional 2019 seventh-round pick. On June 12, 2018, Hackenberg was waived by the Raiders, and the trade with the Jets was negated.[30] The next day, Hackenberg cleared waivers and became a free agent.[31]

Philadelphia EaglesEdit

On August 12, 2018, Hackenberg signed with the Philadelphia Eagles.[32] He sat out two games before making his preseason debut on August 30 against the New York Jets. He was waived on September 1, 2018.[33]

Cincinnati BengalsEdit

On September 3, 2018, Hackenberg was signed to the Cincinnati Bengals' practice squad.[34] On November 5, 2018, Hackenberg was released from the Bengals' practice squad.[35]

Memphis ExpressEdit

In November 2018, Hackenberg participated in the Alliance of American Football's quarterback camp.[36] Later in the month, he was drafted by the Memphis Express in the second round of the 2019 AAF QB Draft.[37]

Hackenberg struggled in his debut with the Express, completing just 10 of 23 passes for 87 yards and an interception before being pulled in the fourth quarter as the Express were shut out by the Birmingham Iron 26–0.[38] His poor performances continued over the next two games as he combined for 32 of 62 completed passes with three interceptions and no touchdowns; he was replaced by Zach Mettenberger during the third game against the Orlando Apollos. On February 25, Express head coach Mike Singletary announced Mettenberger would become the starting quarterback.[39] When Mettenberger was injured on March 16, Brandon Silvers, not Hackenberg, replaced him as the Express' quarterback. The same day, Memphis signed Johnny Manziel to serve as Silvers' backup.[40][41] The league ceased operations in April 2019.[42]


Year Team League GP GS Passing Rushing
Cmp Att Pct Yds Y/A TD Int Rtg Att Yds Avg TD
2016 NYJ NFL 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2017 NYJ NFL 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019 MEM AAF 3 3 32 62 51.6 277 4.5 0 3 43.6 9 47 5.2 1
Career 3 3 32 62 51.6 277 4.5 0 3 43.6 9 47 5.2 1



  1. ^ Moyer, Josh. "Hackenberg named B1G Freshman of the Year". ESPN. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
  2. ^ State College, PA - Penn State Football: Yes, (In) Virginia, There is a Christian Hackenberg Retrieved 2018-05-05.
  3. ^ "Christian Hackenberg". Football Recruiting – Player Profiles – ESPN. ESPN Internet Ventures. February 6, 2013. Retrieved October 17, 2013.
  4. ^ a b "Christian Hackenberg". Yahoo! Sports – Football Recruiting. Yahoo!. Retrieved October 17, 2013.
  5. ^ "Christian Hackenberg – Scouting Report". Football Recruiting – Player Profiles – ESPN Insider (subscription required). ESPN Internet Ventures. February 6, 2013. Retrieved October 17, 2013.
  6. ^ Moyer, Josh (August 30, 2013). "Penn State Nittany Lions to start Christian Hackenberg at QB". ESPN. ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved October 17, 2013.
  7. ^ "Hackenberg named Big Ten Freshman of Week". Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia. NBC Universal. September 16, 2013. Archived from the original on September 18, 2013. Retrieved September 19, 2013.
  8. ^ Flounders, Bob (September 18, 2013). "The Big Easy: Calm, confident Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg making big strides early in his career". The Patriot News. Harrisburg, PA. Retrieved September 18, 2013.
  9. ^ "Hackenberg wins Big Ten freshman of the year award". Daily Collegian.
  10. ^ Kalland, Robby (January 2, 2016). "Penn State QB Christian Hackenberg declares for the NFL Draft". Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  11. ^ "Christian Hackenberg". USA TODAY Sports Digital Properties. Retrieved October 25, 2015.
  12. ^ Shanker, Jared (January 2, 2016). "Christian Hackenberg to enter draft". Retrieved January 2, 2016.
  13. ^ McGinn, Bob (April 20, 2016). "Rating the NFL draft prospects: Quarterbacks". Archived from the original on March 23, 2017. Retrieved June 16, 2018.
  14. ^ "NFL Events: Combine Player Profiles - Christian Hackenberg". National Football League.
  15. ^ Cimini, Rich. "Jets take Christian Hackenberg, adding intrigue to QB situation". ESPN. Retrieved April 30, 2016.
  16. ^ Cimini, Rich. "Hackenberg signs rookie deal with Jets". ESPN. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  17. ^ Slater, Darryl. "Jets' Christian Hackenberg shows progress, inexperience in debut". NJ. Retrieved August 27, 2016.
  18. ^ Schwab, Frank. "Jets QB Christian Hackenberg posts an unbelievably awful stat line". Yahoo Sports. Retrieved September 1, 2016.
  19. ^ " New York Jets' Depth Chart". Retrieved December 24, 2016.
  20. ^ "Christian Hackenberg inactive for Jets-Patriots". Retrieved December 24, 2016.
  21. ^ "Christian Hackenberg Stats". Retrieved February 1, 2017.
  22. ^ "Jets camp starts with a 3-man QB battle and 5 other big issues". Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  23. ^ "Jets' first preseason game goes better than anyone could expect". Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  24. ^ "Christian Hackenberg gets start but struggles in loss to Lions". Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  25. ^ "Jets' Christian Hackenberg struggles vs. Giants, throws two pick-sixes". Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  26. ^ "Jets' Christian Christian Hackenberg report card: How did Jets QB look vs. Eagles?". Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  27. ^ "What's next for Christian Hackenberg after he lost out on the Jets' backup QB job?". Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  28. ^ "Jets place McCown on IR, officially end QB's season". Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  29. ^ "Jets leave Christian Hackenberg on bench, end season with 26-6 loss to Patriots". Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  30. ^ Wesseling, Chris (May 22, 2018). "Jets trade Christian Hackenberg to Oakland Raiders".
  31. ^ Hirschhorn, Jason B (June 13, 2018). "Christian Hackenberg clears waivers, now free agent".
  32. ^ McPherson, Chris (August 12, 2018). "Eagles Sign QB Christian Hackenberg".
  33. ^ McPherson, Chris (September 1, 2018). "Eagles Get To The 53-Player Limit".
  34. ^ "Harris to IR; Hackenberg to PS". September 3, 2018.
  35. ^ Staszewski, Joseph (November 5, 2018). "Things keep getting worse for Christian Hackenberg".
  36. ^ Pickel, Greg (November 26, 2018). "Christian Hackenberg at the AAF 'QB Draft': How to watch, and where could the former Penn State star end up?". The Patriot-News. Retrieved November 28, 2018.
  37. ^ Wilson, Ryan (November 27, 2018). "Alliance of American Football QB Draft: Aaron Murray, Christian Hackenberg highlight QBs taken". Retrieved November 27, 2018.
  38. ^ Berreman, Brad (February 10, 2019). "Christian Hackenberg's AAF debut was just as bad as you'd think". FanSided. Retrieved February 11, 2019.
  39. ^ Munz, Jason (February 25, 2019). "Zach Mettenberger will start at QB for Memphis Express vs. San Diego Fleet". The Commercial Appeal. Retrieved February 25, 2019.
  40. ^ Evans, Jace (March 16, 2019). "Johnny Manziel joining Alliance of American Football's Memphis Express". USA Today. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
  41. ^ Rubino, Dylan (March 16, 2019). "Memphis gets Manziel: Heisman QB joins Alliance". Archived from the original on March 30, 2019. Retrieved March 17, 2019.
  42. ^ Michael Rothstein, Seth Wickersham (June 13, 2019). "Inside the short, unhappy life of the Alliance of American Football". Retrieved September 12, 2019.
  43. ^ "Memphis Express Player Stats". Alliance of American Football. Retrieved March 3, 2019.
  44. ^ "Christian Hackenberg". National Football League. Retrieved February 17, 2019.

External linksEdit