Cody Mauch was all smiles Friday after being drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
And when the 24-year-old offensive lineman flashed that grin, his two front teeth were missing.
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Mauch's longtime trademark look, along with his flowing red locks, might make him look more like a hockey player or a member of the Night's Watch from "Game of Thrones." But he soon will own one of the most famous smiles in NFL history, joining the gap-toothed Michael Strahan in the league's dental pantheon.
Mauch was selected by the Bucs with the No. 48 overall pick in the second round of the 2023 NFL Draft.
The 6-foot-5, 302-pound tackle told reporters he lost his two front teeth in middle school after colliding with a friend while diving for a loose ball during a basketball game. Attempts to fix them led to repeated trips to the orthodontist.
“I went through the process of trying to get them fixed with braces, retainers, these little flippers … all sorts of stuff,” Mauch told reporters during the NFL Combine. “And eventually I kept breaking and losing my retainers all the time, and my mom would get so mad at me all the time because I would have to keep going back to the orthodontist to get new retainers. And eventually I just kind of stopped wearing them and kind of embraced the whole no two-front-teeth look."
A walk-on at North Dakota State as a 221-pound tight end, Mauch gained 80 pounds to transform to an offensive lineman. He'll now head to the Buccaneers to provide pass protection for Tom Brady's successor, Baker Mayfield.
While Tampa Bay may have lost Brady's million-dollar smile, his pearly whites are far more common than Mauch's lack thereof. And as a member of the Buccaneers, he can actually pull off the pirate look.
Does he ever plan to get his teeth fixed?
"I say that I'm going to get them fixed after football, but I don't even know if I ever will," Mauch told reporters. "I don't really mind it at all and it's kind of just part of me I guess."
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Expect the toothpaste endorsements to start rolling in.