FOXBORO, MA – DECEMBER 31: Christian Hackenberg #5 the the brand-new York jets warms up prior to the game versus the new England Patriots in ~ Gillette stadion on December 31, 2017, in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
There have actually been plenty of poor draft picks end the years but who are the 30 best NFL breeze busts of every time?
The NFL draft is frequently a time of hope for all fans due to the fact that a potential franchise-changing superstar have the right to be easily accessible with the mere transforming in of a card. There is likewise a possibility that stated draft pick might flame the end and collection back an company for years.
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There have been plenty of busts in the background of the NFL yet this perform breaks down 30 of the worst flameouts we’ve seen. Since greater picks tend to have loftier expectations this list is comprised virtually entirely of football player picked within the optimal ten through one significant exception, whereby we will start.
30. Best NFL draft busts the all-time – brand-new York jet QB Christian Hackenberg
It bring away an terrible lot to make the perform of best busts of every time together a second-round pick however Christian Hackenberg to be downright disastrous for the Jets. Taken together the Jets’ potential quarterback that the future in 2016 by then-GM Mike Maccagnan, Hackenberg was a finish disaster and also easily cemented himself as the team’s worst draft pick in the last decade.
Many scouts felt the Hackenberg pick was a reach and he never ever earned the to trust of the Jets’ coaching staff, failing to gain on the field even in a shed 2017 season where new York had actually to finish the year with Bryce small under center. Hackenberg was later on dealt to the Oakland Raiders for a conditional breeze pick yet that trade was negated once he got cut prior to the start of the season.
Two other teams took a flier top top Hackenberg yet he never played one NFL snap, making him the first quarterback choose in the very first two ring of the draft to fail come play in a regular-season game since the AFL-NFL closing in 1967. The ignominious stat alone deserve Hackenberg a clues on the list.
Next: No. 29
FOXBORO, MA – DECEMBER 31: Christian Hackenberg #5 the the brand-new York jet warms up before the game against the brand-new England Patriots at Gillette stadium on December 31, 2017, in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
There have been plenty of bad draft picks over the years yet who are the 30 greatest NFL draft busts of every time?
The NFL breeze is often a time of hope for all fans since a potential franchise-changing superstar deserve to be obtainable with the mere turning in that a card. There is likewise a chance that claimed draft pick can flame the end and collection back an organization for years.
There have been many busts in the background of the NFL however this list breaks under 30 the the worst flameouts we’ve seen. Since greater picks tend to have actually loftier expectations this perform is comprised practically entirely of players picked within the peak ten through one noteworthy exception, wherein we will certainly start.
30. Greatest NFL breeze busts of all-time – brand-new York jets QB Christian Hackenberg
It take away an terrible lot to make the list of biggest busts of every time together a second-round pick however Christian Hackenberg to be downright dreadful for the Jets. Taken together the Jets’ potential quarterback of the future in 2016 by then-GM Mike Maccagnan, Hackenberg was a complete disaster and also easily cemented himself as the team’s worst draft pick in the last decade.
Many scouts feeling the Hackenberg pick was a reach and also he never earned the trust of the Jets’ coaching staff, failing to gain on the field even in a shed 2017 season where brand-new York had actually to complete the year with Bryce petty under center. Hackenberg was later dealt to the Oakland Raiders for a conditional draft pick yet that trade was negated when he got cut prior to the start of the season.
Two various other teams take it a flier on Hackenberg but he never played an NFL snap, making him the an initial quarterback picked in the first two rounds of the breeze to fail come play in a regular-season game since the AFL-NFL closing in 1967. That ignominious stat alone earned Hackenberg a spot on the list.
Next: No. 29
BALTIMORE, MD – SEPTEMBER 12: art Schlichter #10 of the Baltimore Colts drops ago to pass against the brand-new England Patriots throughout an NFL football video game September 12, 1982, at Memorial stadion in Baltimore, Maryland. Schlichter played because that the Colts indigenous 1982-85. (Photo by focus on Sport/Getty Images)
29. Biggest NFL breeze busts the all-time – Baltimore Colts QB arts Schlichter
The list of greatest NFL draft busts is littered v quarterbacks and also one male who often drops under the radar is arts Schlichter. A dual-threat quarterback at Ohio State, Schlichter was a strong an option for the Baltimore Colts in the 1984 draft, wherein he went fourth overall.
The hype about Schlichter was intense due to the fact that he to be a personal favorite of legendary Ohio State head coach Woody Hayes, who made Schlichter the critical quarterback he ever coached. Over there was never a question of ability with Schlichter, who had all the talent in the world, but he to be done in by a severe gambling addiction.
Schlichter gambled far his entire signing bonus through the center of his rookie season and also got himself suspended by the NFL because that 13 months. ~ the completion of his suspension, Schlichter returned but was reduced by the Colts after that admitted that he gambled anyway during the suspension.
The Buffalo Bills provided Schlichter a second chance however the rug got pulled out from under him as soon as the USFL collapsed, allowing Buffalo to hand the task to Jim Kelly instead. Schlichter ended up the end of the NFL ~ that, surfacing summary in the Arena football League, yet his gambling addiction damaged what could have been a really promising career.
Next: No. 28
PITTSBURGH – DECEMBER 4: defensive lineman Steve Niehaus #71 of the Seattle Seahawks on the sideline throughout a game versus the Pittsburgh Steelers at 3 Rivers stadion on December 4, 1977, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
28. Best NFL draft busts of all-time – Seattle Seahawks DE Steve Niehaus
Draft busts can be magnified when castle are amongst the earliest choose of an development franchise. That player is often taken into consideration to be a confront of the franchise and also a building block come future success, miscellaneous the Seattle Seahawks hoped would be the instance with protective end Steve Niehaus.
Seattle took Niehaus through the second overall pick in the 1976 NFL Draft together the first player ever before picked through the organization. The early returns were good with Niehaus, that racked increase 9.5 sacks in his rookie season to knife NFC defensive Rookie of the Year honors.
That rookie project would be a career to mark for Niehaus, who saw his potential go up in smoke thanks to a devastating series of knee injuries. Niehaus lasted simply three years in Seattle prior to the Seahawks relocated on and also he played one more year for the Minnesota Vikings before hanging up his cleats.
It is a shame that Niehaus finished up ~ above this list because he flashed the talent to be an anchor for the Seahawks’ defense because that years as a rookie. Niehaus is a perfect instance of exactly how injuries room unpredictable and can sink even the most promising NFL prospects.
Next: No. 27
Houston quarterback David Carr throughout a game between the brand-new York Giants and the Houston Texans in ~ The Meadowlands in east Rutherford, brand-new Jersey top top November 5th, 2006. The Giants won 14 to 10. (Photo through James R. Morton/NFLPhotoLibrary)
27. Best NFL draft busts the all-time – Houston Texans QB David Carr
Flaming out together the height pick in the NFL breeze is a an excellent way to do this perform although, to be fair, groups picking the high often collection those picks up because that failure. The is absolutely what happened to David Carr, who was the an initial draft choose in the history of the Houston Texans.
Carr was the very first overall choose in the 2002 draft the end of Fresno State with Houston having designs ~ above him gift their eventual franchise quarterback. The difficulty was that the Texans couldn’t develop an offensive line for Carr, leading him to take a chuck 76 sacks in his rookie year, an NFL document that tho stands to this day.
All of those sacks caused some poor habits because that Carr, who was trying to carry out a ton to help drag a poor football team to victory. Over there were certainly some highs because that Carr, who did lead the NFL in completion portion in 2006, yet he was never ever able to change the Texans into a winner.
Houston exit Carr after ~ the 2006 season and he bounced approximately the league as a backup for a couple of years, notably winning a Super key ring through the new York Giants in 2011. Carr’s last stat line of 65 touchdowns versus 71 interceptions to go along with a 59.7 percent completion rate is extensively mediocre, far from what girlfriend would desire out of a top as whole pick.
Next: No. 26
13 Sep 1992: protective lineman Steve Emtman the the Indianapolis Colts look at on throughout a game against the Houston Oilers in ~ the RCA Dome in Indianapolis, Indiana. The Oilers won the game, 20-10. Obligated Credit: Gary Mook /Allsport
26. Biggest NFL breeze busts of all-time – Indianapolis Colts DE Steve Emtman
Another common theme for NFL draft busts is college stars who merely never dominated at the next level. Our very first example that this kind of bust is Steve Emtman, that was taken through the very first overall choose in the 1992 NFL draft by the Indianapolis Colts.
Emtman was a star defensive end in ~ the college of Washington, help the Huskies victory a nationwide championship in 1991. Plenty of scouts considered Emtman to it is in the best player on that team and also he earn unanimous All-American status after racking increase 62 tackles, including 20.5 tackles because that loss.
The Colts did view flashes of the player in Emtman’s rookie season once he picked turn off a pass and also returned the 90 yards for a touchdown to ice cream a success over the Miami Dolphins, earning Emtman AFC defensive Player the the main honors. Regrettably for Emtman, the artificial turn in the RCA Dome didn’t agree v his knees, causing multiple season-ending knee injuries.
Emtman overcame far-ranging odds to return from all of those knee concerns only to view the route of his career changed by a neck injury that caused some major nerve damage. The Colts exit Emtman after ~ the 1994 season and also he played simply three an ext years in the NFL before retiring in 1997 at just 27 years old through eight job sacks and also 134 NFL tackles across six seasons.
Next: No. 25
25. Biggest NFL breeze busts the all-time – new York Giants OT Ereck Flowers
Whiffing on an attack tackle in the peak ten can collection a line earlier for years. The new York Giants learned this the hard way when they took Ereck Flowers through the ninth overall pick in the 2015 draft out of Miami.
Despite his tremendous collegiate accolades, Flowers never ever lived as much as the hype in new York, offering up a ridiculous 169 pressure at left tackle, the most of any tackle in the league since 2015. The press of playing in brand-new York additionally was tough for Flowers, that was accused of quitting on his team by former teammate and NFL analyst Geoff Schwartz.
The Giants moved Flowers to ideal tackle in 2018 and also eventually benched him because that Chad Wheeler, a relocate that led to his release. Flower bounced approximately the organization after that, kicking within for Jacksonville and Miami before landing on his feet as a starting guard for the Washington soccer Team.
The fact that flower did manage to uncover a 2nd act as an inner lineman does store him native going also high on this list. Flower was a flop in new York, however, and also his failure played a large role in the deterioration of the Giants’ offensive line at the end of Eli Manning’s career.
Next: No. 24
PITTSBURGH, PA – OCTOBER 16: Quarterback David Klingler the the Cincinnati Bengals looks on indigenous the sideline during a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at 3 Rivers stadion on October 16, 1994, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Steelers beat the Bengals 14-10. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
24. Biggest NFL draft busts the all-time – Cincinnati Bengals QB David Klingler
Finding a franchise quarterback is hard and also several teams have had actually noted challenge locating an elite signal-caller. One together team is the Cincinnati Bengals, who have placed many quarterbacks top top this perform of best NFL breeze busts of all time.
The Bengals thought they had it made once they landing Klingler v the sixth pick in the 1992 draft the end of the university of Houston. Klingler rewrote the NCAA record publications during his university career, setting the all-time record for touchdown overcome in a season v 54, a mark that stood for 16 years.
The prolific offensive performance didn’t monitor Klingler come the NFL together he put up mediocre numbers in his an initial two seasons as Cincinnati’s starter. Klingler shed his beginning job in 1995 come Jeff Blake, however his career was essentially over after ~ a major elbow surgical treatment severely impacted his ability to throw.
Several other NFL organizations offered Klingler a chance, including Oakland and also Green Bay, but he never came to be an NFL starter again. Klingler’s failure forced the Bengals come go earlier to the quarterback well in the breeze in a few years, a decision we’ll talk about in due time.
Next: No. 23
MIAMI, FL – OCTOBER 14: Kevin White #11 that the Chicago bears warms up prior to the game versus the Miami dolphins at difficult Rock stadium on October 14, 2018, in Miami, Florida. (Photo by note Brown/Getty Images)
23. Best NFL draft busts that all-time – Chicago bears WR Kevin White
Sometimes the many talented draft picks can have your potential eradicated through injuries. Choose Steve Emtman and Steve Niehaus, Kevin White to be an electrifying player who never obtained to showcase his potential many thanks to a litany the injuries.
The Chicago Bears take it White through the seventh choose in the 2015 NFL breeze after a dominant an elderly season at West Virginia. Together a Mountaineer, White placed up 109 records for 1,447 yards and also 10 touchdowns, involvement Amari Cooper as the peak receivers in the 2015 class.
The injuries started beforehand for White, who never ever played a game in his rookie season after suffering a anxiety fracture in his shin. White played in 4 games in 2016 prior to breaking his left foot again when White’s 2017 season lasted simply one game after he broken his shoulder blade in the season opener.
Over the course of five years, White has actually only registered 25 career records for 285 yards together the continuous injuries robbed him of number of prime years. White is currently on the exercise squad the the new Orleans Saints as he make the efforts to do an NFL comeback.
Next: No. 22
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – JANUARY 02: protective End Vernon Gholston
22. Best NFL draft busts that all-time – brand-new York jet DE Vernon Gholston
One that the best fears when it pertains to drafting football player is the practice warrior. This player doesn’t produce a ton in college but dominates the so-called “underwear Olympics” that is the NFL combine, leading some team to autumn in love through his potential and overdraft stated player.
That occurred to the jet in 2008 v Vernon Gholston, who had put up only one great season at Ohio State but put up tremendous athletic numbers at the combine. The Jets to be desperate to uncover an edge rusher to replace John Abraham, who they traded to Atlanta ~ the 2005 season, and also selected Gholston with the sixth as whole pick.
Gholston never ever was able to earn far-reaching reps on the Jets’ defense, racking up simply 42 tackles and zero sacks over three seasons in Eric Mangini and also Rex Ryan’s defenses. The Jets moved on indigenous Gholston after just three seasons and also he never cracked one NFL roster again.
The truth that such a dominant edge rushing prospect never ever recorded a bag in the NFL is for sure astounding. ESPN detailed at the time of Gholston’s relax that 617 various players, including 117 who went undrafted, had recorded a bag in the 3 years he had actually played, a authorize of exactly how colossal a fail Gholston was in the NFL.
Next: No. 21
DENVER, CO – OCTOBER 13: vast receiver Justin Blackmon #14 that the Jacksonville Jaguars provides a pass reception against the Denver Broncos at sporting activities Authority ar at Mile High ~ above October 13, 2013, in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Jaguars 35-19. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
21. Greatest NFL breeze busts of all-time – Jacksonville Jaguars WR Justin Blackmon
Bad drafting deserve to sink NFL groups so it isn’t at every shocking that numerous of the league’s perennial losers have actually multiple entries on this list. One team that has actually made plenty of draft mistakes is the Jacksonville Jaguars, that got level out unlucky with what taken place with Justin Blackmon.
The Jaguars were searching for a big-play receiver when they took Blackmon through the fifth as whole pick the end of Oklahoma State in 2012. Blackmon bonus the Jaguars’ faith automatically with a leading rookie season in which he tape-recorded 64 records for 865 yards and also five touchdowns.
Everything changed for Blackmon thanks to a collection of medicine suspensions and also legal issues. Blackmon to be suspended because that the begin of the 2013 season many thanks to one off-field incident and played in just four games before getting suspended indefinitely for a 2nd violation that the NFL’s substance-abuse policy.
A series of arrests and off-field occurrences essentially finished Blackmon’s career and also he hasn’t played in the NFL because the 2013 season. The Jaguars were set back because that years by Blackmon’s flameout, an unfortunate finish for a player that flashed a ton of talent once he could take the field.
Next: No. 20
KANSAS CITY, MO – JANUARY 2: stack Mirer #3 the the Seattle Seahawks in action against the Kansas City Chiefs during an NFL football game January 2, 1994, in ~ Arrowhead stadion in Kansas City, Missouri. Mire played for the Seahawks native 1993-96. (Photo by focus on Sport/Getty Images)
20. Greatest NFL breeze busts that all-time – Seattle Seahawks QB stack Mirer
The 2nd Seahawk on this list, rick Mirer was a complete flop because that Seattle. A standout quarterback in ~ Notre Dame, Mirer led the Fighting ireland to win in the 1992 street Bowl and was touted together the 2nd coming that Joe Montana.
There to be a far-reaching debate leading approximately the draft regarding whether Mirer or attracted Bledsoe need to be the peak pick. Brand-new England held the an initial selection and also chose Bledsoe, leaving Mirer because that Seattle at no. 2, a relocate that verified to be the best decision for the Patriots.
The Seahawks allow Mirer start from day 1 and also he underwhelmed end the food of 4 seasons, tossing 41 touchdowns versus 56 interceptions. Mirer to be traded after ~ the 1996 season come Chicago, wherein he started just three games before getting cut.
The last time Mirer made a far-ranging impact on the NFL see was when he took over as the Jets beginning quarterback in 1999 for an injured vinny Testaverde. Mirer was dreadful for the Jets, going just 1-6 together a starter prior to being replaced by beam Lucas, noting the unofficial end to Mirer’s NFL career external of a couple of years bouncing approximately the organization as a backup.
Next: No. 19
31 Aug 1997: Running back Lawrence Phillips that the St. Louis Rams runs with the new Orleans defense to score a touchdown during the Rams 38-24 victory at the Trans human being Dome in St. Louis, Missouri. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Dunn /Allsport
19. Greatest NFL breeze busts the all-time – St. Luigi Rams RB Lawrence Phillips
There is a classification of NFL breeze busts that gain sidetracked by far-reaching off-the-field issues. Maybe the most prominent example at the running earlier spot is Lawrence Phillips, who had actually a ton of trouble v the law during his NFL career.
There to be red flags with Phillips dating back to his college career at Nebraska, wherein he was arrested multiple times for cases involving assault, vandalism and disturbing the peace. Despite every one of Phillips’ issues, his talent was undeniable and also it enticed the St. Luigi Rams to take it him with the sixth as whole pick in the 1996 draft.
The Rams thought so strongly in Phillips’ potential that they traded away Jerome Bettis, a future room of Famer, come hand Phillips the starting job. Phillips lasted just a year and a fifty percent before obtaining abruptly reduced by the Rams ~ he proved up to exercise with alcohol on his breath.
The off-field occurrences kept Phillips from creating a hold on an NFL roster spot and he was completely out of football by 2003. Phillips wound up earlier in jail and also ended up committing suicide in 2016, a tragic finishing to a life that had so much unrealized potential.
Next: No. 18
Aundray Bruce, Atlanta Falcons. (Mandatory Credit: rose oil Greule/Getty Images)
18. Best NFL breeze busts of all-time – Atlanta Falcons LB Aundray Bruce
It often takes a special prospect for a defensive player to it is in picked very first overall in the NFL Draft. The Atlanta Falcons assumed they had discovered a generational talent in ~ linebacker as soon as they take it Aundray Bruce v the optimal pick in the 1987 draft.
A two-time All-SEC performer in ~ Auburn, Bruce to be the MVP of the 1987 Citrus Bowl and also was pertained to as the next Lawrence Taylor. If Bruce go play because that 11 years in the NFL he never achieved anything close to an LT level of production.
The Falcons had actually Bruce for four seasons, where he racked increase 16 sacks, 176 tackles, four compelled fumbles and three interceptions in 62 games. Those numbers to be the tantamount of a heavy starter, not a generational talent.
Bruce’s agree career sheathe up v a seven-year stint playing for the Raiders, where he to be again a solid however unspectacular contributor on defense. The fail of Bruce has had a tremendous influence on the linebacker position since no team has ever before taken a linebacker through the top pick since Bruce busted.
Next: No. 17
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – NOVEMBER 13: Greg Robinson #73 the the Los Angeles Rams in activity against the new York jet at MetLife stadion on November 13, 2016, in eastern Rutherford, new Jersey. (Photo through Al Bello/Getty Images)
17. Biggest NFL draft busts the all-time – Los Angeles Rams OT Greg Robinson
There was a hard stretch of drafts whereby the Los Angeles Rams had actually extra first-round picks thanks to their decision to trade the 2nd overall choose in the 2012 breeze to the Washington Redskins. Those picks allowed the Rams to take some big swings with Washington’s picks, including the no. 2 pick in 2014, as soon as they took attack tackle Greg Robinson the end of Auburn.
A standout starter because that the Tigers, Auburn was the left handle on Auburn’s 2013 SEC championship squad. At 6-foot-5 and also 330 pounds, Robinson looked like a prototypical left tackle to aid the Rams keep Sam Bradford upright.
That upside never materialized as Robinson struggled to do the adjustment to NFL competition. Robinson also had problems managing his weight, top the Rams to dump him on the Detroit Lions after just three years because that a sixth-round pick.
The Lions likewise gave up on Robinson midway v the 2017 campaign and also he invested two non-descript years in Cleveland before bouncing out of the organization after the 2019 season. An off-the-field event saw Robinson acquire arrested for transporting over 150 pounds of marijuana in 2020, essentially finishing his NFL career.
Next: No. 16
26 Nov 1995: Quarterback heath Shuler
16. Biggest NFL breeze busts of all-time – Washington Redskins QB pagan Shuler
We’ve hit one more quarterback ~ above the busts list v Shuler, making him the sixth quarterback so far on the countdown. Shuler was a star performer at the university of Tennessee, finishing 2nd in the Heisman Trophy voting as a small in 1993 and also holding practically every significant passing document for the Volunteers.
That success was parlayed right into the third overall pick in the 1993 draft by Washington, which experienced Shuler’s tenure get off to a rocky start thanks to a lengthy training camp holdout because of a contract dispute. The delayed start to his career was problematic for Shuler, that struggled the end of the gate and also quickly uncovered himself in a quarterback competition with 1994 seventh-round choose Gus Frerotte.
Washington eventually determined to go v Frerotte, dumping Shuler to brand-new Orleans in 1997 because that a pair that picks. Shuler didn’t execute well v the Saints either, experiencing a serious foot injury that eventually led come the finish of his career.
Even despite his soccer career was unsuccessful, Shuler did find a solid second act together a politician. Shuler served six years in the house of Representatives as a representative of his home state of north Carolina native 2007-2013, a run that witnessed him do a push to be the minority Leader for the Democrats before losing come Nancy Pelosi.
Next: No. 15
DAVIE, FL – JULY 31: Dion Jordan #95 the the Miami dolphin looks on throughout training camp top top July 31, 2016, in ~ the Miami dolphin training facility in Davie, Florida. (Photo through Ron Elkman/Sports Imagery/Getty Images)
15. Best NFL breeze busts of all-time – Miami dolphin DE Dion Jordan
Sometimes also prospects who seem choose sure points don’t occupational out in the NFL. The Miami dolphin learned this lesson the hard method when they took Dion Jordan with the 3rd overall pick in the 2013 draft the end of the university of Oregon.
A standout performer for the Ducks, Jordan attracted raves native NFL scouts after superb career at Oregon where he describe his capacity to fit right into multiple protective schemes. A two-time first-team All-Pac 12 member and an All-American in 2012, Jordan was a solid rotational player together a rookie, racking up 26 tackles and also chipping in two sacks in 2013.
Jordan ran into worries with the league’s PED policy, however, drawing three suspensions that brought about an indefinite ban from the NFL. Despite getting reinstated in 2016 Jordan didn’t pat a down for the Dolphins, that had decided to relocate on.
Several other teams took a opportunity on Jordan after the dolphin let the walk together a totally free agent, consisting of Seattle, Oakland and also San Francisco. Over the course of seven years, Jordan has actually started just 5 games if contributing 108 tackles and also 13.5 sacks, very modest production from a top-five pick.
Next: No. 14
PONTIAC, MI – SEPTEMBER 26: Quarterback Andre Ware #11 of the Detroit Lions listens come head coach Wayne Fontes on the sideline during a game against the Phoenix Cardinals in ~ the Pontiac Silverdome ~ above September 26, 1993, in Pontiac, Michigan. The Lions defeated the Cardinals 26-20. (Photo through George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
14. Greatest NFL breeze busts of all-time – Detroit Lions QB Andre Ware
The Detroit Lions have had actually their fair share of draft busts over the years and also their greatest whiff at quarterback came in 1990. Head coach Wayne Fontes insisted that the team pick Houston star Andre Ware v the seventh pick of the draft in spite of the scouting department’s solid recommendation the the Lions happen on Ware.
There were no talent inquiries with Ware, that won the Heisman Trophy in 1989 when he threw because that 4,699 yards and also 44 touchdowns while setup a litany that NCAA documents over the food of the season. That star-studded performance recorded the eye of Fontes, who envisioned a future where Ware and also Barry Sanders would certainly lead Detroit come multiple Super bowl titles.
The bloom came off the climbed really quickly as Fontes appeared to have buyers remorse v Ware, providing him just six beginning in four years, opting to rely on Rodney Peete as his primary quarterback instead. The Raiders and Jacksonville Jaguars each took a opportunity on Ware after he left Detroit however neither saw sufficient to provide him a shot in ~ their starting job.
It definitely seems like Ware wasn’t provided a shot because he wasn’t a good fit in traditional NFL offenses of the time after to run the run-and-shoot v the Cougars. The is fair to wonder if Ware was merely ahead the his time and would have prospered if he was drafted in today’s pass-happy league.
Next: No. 13
CLEVELAND, five – SEPTEMBER 08: Running back Trent Richardson #33 that the Cleveland Browns runs a play throughout the an initial half versus the Miami dolphins at very first Energy stadium on September 8, 2013, in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
13. Greatest NFL breeze busts the all-time – Cleveland Browns RB Trent Richardson
Prior come the past few years, it felt choose every high draft choose that the Cleveland Browns do turned right into a flop. Among the biggest misses for Cleveland came in 2012 when they take it Trent Richardson with the 3rd overall pick out the Alabama.
Taking a running back with a top-five pick has actually fallen out of donate in the modern NFL yet Richardson looked to be an exemption to the dominance at the time he to be taken. A bellcow at Alabama, Richardson ran because that 1,679 yards and also 21 touchdowns as a junior, help the Crimson Tide victory a pair of nationwide championships in his 3 years in Tuscaloosa.
Richardson had a solid rookie year v Cleveland, rushing for 950 yards and 11 touchdowns, however the Browns shockingly gave up on him two gamings into his second season by dealing him come the Indianapolis Colts for a 2014 first-round pick. The move was widely ridiculed in ~ the time however proved to it is in correct together Richardson never established himself together a starting quality earlier in Indy, getting reduced after just two years with the Colts.
Richardson never played in the NFL again ~ 2014, bouncing roughly various secondary leagues prefer the CFL and also AAF as he check to establish himself again. The dramatic failure of Richardson is now offered as a cautionary story for teams who choose a running earlier early in the very first round.
Next: No. 12
GLENDALE, ARIZONA – DECEMBER 23: Running back David Johnson #31 of the Arizona Cardinals rushes the football native quarterback josh Rosen #3 throughout the NFL game versus the Los Angeles Rams at State farm Stadium top top December 23, 2018, in Glendale, Arizona. The Rams beat the Cardinals 31-9. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
12. Greatest NFL breeze busts that all-time – Arizona Cardinals QB mock Rosen
The quarterback class of 2018 was regarded as among the finest to come the end of college since the 1983 chop that developed Hall-of-Famers like John Elway and Dan Marino. There to be a ton of debate as to who the best prospect in the bunch was however UCLA’s mockery Rosen had his same share that advocates.
Scouts who chosen Rosen felt the he to be the most pro-ready possibility in the class, playing in a classic offense at UCLA and featuring a prototypical NFL build. There were questions around Rosen’s attitude, however, as well as his appointment to playing elite football but they didn’t deter the Arizona Cardinals from taking him v the 10th choose in 2018.
Circumstances worked versus Rosen, who was thrown come the wolves after starter Sam Bradford flopped. Rosen started Arizona’s final 13 games, going simply 3-10 with 11 touchdowns versus 14 interceptions, but new coach Kliff Kingsbury chose he liked Kyler Murray much better so the Cardinals took Murray v the first pick in 2019, leaving Rosen without a job.
Arizona traded Rosen come Miami, whereby he never really gained a opportunity to play and hasn’t done sufficient to knife a beginning job since. Rosen is currently backing increase Matt Ryan in Atlanta and appears extremely unlikely to ever before live approximately the potential he had as a Bruin.
Next: No. 11
CLEVELAND, five – OCTOBER 12: Quarterback Tim Couch #2 of the Cleveland Browns passes during a game versus the Oakland Raiders in ~ Cleveland Browns stadium on October 12, 2003, in Cleveland, Ohio. The Browns beat the Raiders 13-7. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
11. Greatest NFL draft busts of all-time – Cleveland Browns QB Tim Couch
All that the same disagreements that landed David Carr ~ above this list apply to Tim Couch. After ~ the Browns to be relaunched in 1999, their first draft choose was Couch, a star quarterback indigenous Kentucky who Cleveland hoped would certainly be the face of the franchise.
Couch was a Heisman Trophy finalist as a junior in 1998, throwing because that 4,275 yards v 36 touchdowns against 15 interceptions, setup an SEC record for pass yardage in a single season that lasted for over 20 years until Joe Burrow broke it in 2019. The load of transferring a franchise prefer the Browns v the roster the an expansion team was a lot of to manage for Couch, who struggled come maintain consistent play.
It looked like Couch was on the verge that a breakthrough in his 4th year as he tossed 18 touchdowns while the Browns were closing in ~ above a postseason berth. Couch damaged his leg at the end of the consistent season, however, leading him to miss out on the playoffs as Kelly Holcomb threw for 400 yards in a loss to the Steelers, igniting a quarterback dispute that marked the start of the end for Couch in Cleveland.
The Browns eventually let Couch leaving after the 2003 season, allowing him come land in eco-friendly Bay as Brett Favre’s backup, but Couch suffered a rotator cuff injury the essentially ended his NFL career. The failure of Couch brought about a seemingly never-ending bicycle of quarterbacks for the Browns that appears to have lastly been damaged with the choice of Baker Mayfield in 2018.
Next: No. 10
CLEVELAND, oh – NOVEMBER 30: Justin Gilbert #21 the the Cleveland Browns tote the ball against the Baltimore Ravens in ~ FirstEnergy stadium on November 30, 2015, in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo through Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
10. Biggest NFL draft busts the all-time – Cleveland Browns CB Justin Gilbert
Our third Browns’ bust in the last five picks is a recent pick that went under as a significant failure. Cleveland to be ecstatic to land Justin Gilbert through the eighth as whole pick together a potential anchor for your secondary.
A star because that Oklahoma State together a collegian, Gilbert not only excelled at corner however as a kick returner, making the a flexible weapon on special teams. Gilbert acquired off to a slow start in Cleveland, failing come earn significant playing time till late in his rookie season, but hopes to be high because that him heading right into 2015.
Things didn’t boost for Gilbert, who wore out his welcome v the Browns’ coaching staff and also was transport to the Pittsburgh Steelers for a sixth-round pick. The relocate to Pittsburgh didn’t do lot for Gilbert, who couldn’t crack the defensive rotation and worked generally on special teams.
The Steelers exit Gilbert after just one year and to do matters worse he to be suspended through the NFL for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy. Gilbert never played an additional down in the NFL, cementing his condition as an iconic draft flop because that a franchise littered through them in Cleveland.
Next: No. 9
SAN DIEGO, CA – DECEMBER 2: Running back Blair Thomas
9. Biggest NFL draft busts of all-time – brand-new York jet RB Blair Thomas
The jet have additionally been a perennial pretender thanks to a litany of breeze failures however none was an ext infamous 보다 Blair Thomas. A star running back at penn State, thomas was a Heisman Trophy critical in 1989 after placing up 1,341 yards and also five touchdowns.
Expectations were high in new York for Thomas, who was taken with the 2nd overall choose in the 1990 draft and also given the number 32, the very first time a Jets’ player obtained it because the retirement that Super key III hero Emerson Boozer. Thomas never could earn the trust of the Jets’ coaching staff, working in four-man and three-man running back rotations in each of his very first two seasons.
Injuries likewise took a toll fee on Thomas, who only rushed for 2,000 yards and also five touchdowns in 4 seasons with new York. The jets let cutting board walk ~ the 1993 season and also he showed up in just 13 games over the following two periods with three various teams.
Thomas is an additional prime example of the threats of investing a top-five draft pick at the running earlier position due to the fact that the bust rate on those players have the right to be rather high. The Jets absolutely wish they can have a do-over through that choose as lock passed on 3 future Hall-of-Famers, including Emmitt Smith, to tab Thomas 2nd overall.
Next: No. 8
BALTIMORE, MD – SEPTEMBER 24: protective End plunder Burnett #90 that the Baltimore Ravens make the efforts to sack Quarterback Akili blacksmith #11 the the Cincinnati Bengals in the pocket throughout an NFL video game at PSINet stadion on September 24, 2000, in Baltimore, Maryland. The Ravens winner 37-0. (Photo through Michael J. Minardi/Getty Images)
8. Biggest NFL draft busts the all-time – Cincinnati Bengals QB Akili Smith
The quarterback class of 1999 was definitely an exciting one. 5 signal-callers walk in the an initial 11 picks, including the height three, which to be capped through the Cincinnati Bengals’ decision to take Akili Smith.
Smith wasn’t really on draft radars prior to his senior season in ~ Oregon, wherein he conquered the Pac-12, leading the conference v 3,783 happen yards while tossing 32 touchdowns versus just eight interceptions. A dual-threat quarterback, blacksmith impressed teams by to run a 4.72 second time in the 40-yard dash, however his lack of suffer at the college level was certainly a concern.
The Bengals were undaunted when they take it Smith yet were disappointed in his i can not qualify to choose up the whole playbook. Smith started simply 17 games in four seasons as a Bengal, throw just five touchdown passes and also 13 interceptions before being exit in 2003.
Green Bay and Tampa Bay take it a look in ~ Smith yet cut him prior to he ever before played a game with them. Smith’s short-lived NFL tenure is a cautionary tale for groups looking to draft quarterbacks with restricted collegiate experience since the finding out curve of walking from college to the pros is enormous for any kind of prospect, making ones with couple of starts under your belts a much trickier proposition come develop.
Next: No. 7
DETROIT, MI – SEPTEMBER 7: wide receiver Charles Rogers #80 of the Detroit Lions speak to the push after the game versus the Arizona Cardinals in ~ Ford ar on September 7, 2003, in Detroit, Michigan. The Lions defeated the Cardinals 42-24. (Photo by Danny Moloshok/Getty Images)
7. Biggest NFL draft busts the all-time – Detroit Lions WR Charles Rogers
Many civilization remember Calvin Johnson together the Detroit Lions’ standout broad receiver pick in the top ten of the NFL Draft however he was their 3rd attempt in ~ addressing the position. Roy Williams, who went seventh overall in 2004, to be a hard player yet Charles Rogers was an all-time whiff.
The to the right seemed choose a perfect one because that Rogers, a native of Saginaw, Michigan who starred collegiately at Michigan State. Regarded as a can’t miss prospect at wide receiver, the Lions happily take it Rogers through the 2nd overall pick in the 2003 NFL Draft, one slot ahead of Andre Johnson.
That decision came back to haunt the Lions together Rogers damaged his clavicle in both 2003 and also 2004, finishing his periods early. Detroit allow Rogers go home after his injury in 2004, bring about him choose up a 3rd violation of the NFL’s substance-abuse policy, leading to a suspension to begin 2005.
Rogers was never ever the very same player and was reduced by the Lions in 2006 after new head coach stick Marinelli had concerns about his work ethic. No various other team took a chance on Rogers, who dealt with opioid addiction for the remainder the his life and died of liver fail in 2019.
Next: No. 6
BALTIMORE, MD – respectable 29: Quarterback Robert Griffin III #10 the the Washington Redskins watch on throughout warm-ups before the begin of a preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens in ~ M&T bank Stadium on august 29, 2015, in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo through Matt Hazlett/ Getty Images)
6. Best NFL breeze busts of all-time – Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III
Everyone intended Andrew lucky to it is in the peak quarterback prospect in 2012 yet the introduction of Robert Griffin III was a major surprise. Griffin seemingly came out of i do not have anything to success the Heisman Trophy at Baylor, perfect 72.4 percent the his passes for 4,293 yards v 37 touchdowns and six interceptions while likewise rushing for 699 yards and 10 an ext scores.
The Indianapolis Colts made it clear they would certainly take Luck at one however the St. Louis Rams organized the 2nd pick and also had their very own quarterback in Sam Bradford, leaving the pick up because that bids. The Washington Redskins came out on top by sending a whopping three first-round picks and a second-rounder come St. Louis to gain the right to breeze RGIII.
The move paid instant dividends as Griffin won the offensive Rookie that the Year compensation while top Washington to the postseason yet the trajectory the his job was altered significantly by a major knee injury in ~ the finish of his rookie year. Griffin was never ever the very same player after experience knee surgery and lost the to trust of the coaching staff, that felt that Kirk Cousins was a far better player.
Cousins at some point beat the end RGIII for the beginning job in 2015, top Washington come dump the after the season. Griffin gained one more chance to begin for Cleveland before getting pains again, forcing that to work out for a backup job v the Baltimore Ravens, where he played for 3 years before being cut after the 2020 campaign.
Next: No. 5
8 Sep 1996: Running ago Ki-Jana Carter that the Cincinnati Bengals in action on the ar as that looks ago to the sideline to get signals native coaches during the Bengals 27-14 loss to the mountain Diego Chargers at Jack Murphy stadium in san Diego, California
5. Greatest NFL breeze busts that all-time – Cincinnati Bengals RB Ki-Jana Carter
There might not it is in a larger bust at running back in the background of the NFL Draft than Ki-Jana Carter. The Cincinnati Bengals fell in love v Carter after a stellar collegiate job at penn State which to be highlighted through a stellar junior season where he ran for 1,539 yards and also 23 touchdowns.
That showing assisted Carter become a Heisman Trophy finalist and also sent his draft stock come the moon. The Bengals determined they had actually to have Carter, trading as much as the an initial overall pick to pick him as the focal allude of their offense.
Investing in to run backs is always a dicey proposition since they are injury-prone, a fate the haunted Carter’s career. The Bengals shed Carter prior to his rookie season even started after Carter tore ligaments in his knee and also two much more serious injuries expense him even an ext time.
All the the assorted ailments took a toy fee on Carter, that rushed for only 1,144 yards and 20 touchdowns in a 10-year NFL career. Carter’s injury-caused flameout did have actually a profound affect on the NFL, however, because no running back has ever before gone through the an initial overall pick due to the fact that then.
Next: No. 4
CHICAGO, IL – DECEMBER 20: Linebacker Brian Bosworth #55 that the Seattle Seahawks in action against the Chicago Bears during an NFL football game December 20, 1987, at Soldier ar in Chicago, Illinois. Bosworth played because that the Seahawks native 1987-89. (Photo by emphasis on Sport/Getty Images)
4. Biggest NFL breeze busts that all-time – Seattle Seahawks LB Brian Bosworth
If this list was going to it is in rated strictly in regards to personality, Brian Bosworth would be no. 1 v a bullet. Recognized infamously together “The Boz”, Bosworth do a name for himself in college together an electrifying linebacker that was an intimidating presence when he to be on the field.
There were plenty the off-field controversies with Bosworth in college, however, including a steroid suspension, a fight through the NCAA and also a tell-all short article with Sports depicted exposing wrongdoing inside the Oklahoma program. Bosworth’s talent did prevail for the Seattle Seahawks, that took the in the first round of the 1987 supplemental draft and handed him a ten-year contract worth $11 million.
The Seahawks gained plenty the swagger native Bosworth, that loved to talk trash ~ above the field however didn’t always back it up v results. The most renowned moment that Bosworth’s quick career came as soon as he publicly declared he would contain Raiders’ star running earlier Bo Jackson only to check out Jackson blast Bosworth right into the finish zone ~ above a touchdown run.
Bosworth’s pro career lasted just two seasons after he was required to retire through a serious shoulder injury. It all turned the end well in the finish for Bosworth, who arisen a nice acting career after ~ his retirement, yet Seattle never got the player they believed they drafted.
Next: No. 3
24 Sep 1989: offensive lineman Tony Mandarich that the green Bay Packers in action during a game versus the Los Angeles Rams in ~ Anaheim stadium in Anaheim, California. The Rams winner the game, 41-38. Causing obligation Credit: Mike Powell /Allsport
3. Greatest NFL breeze busts the all-time – eco-friendly Bay Packers OT Tony Mandarich
The only eco-friendly Bay Packers draft choose on this perform is an iconic breeze flop. Attack tackle Tony Mandarich to be widely considered to be among the finest offensive tackle future of all time once he was taken with the second overall choose in the 1989 NFL Draft.
A standout player at Michigan State, Mandarich was named an All-American in 1988 and put with each other arguably the biggest NFL integrate performance a lineman had ever yielded at the time. Sports depicted touted Mandarich together “The incredible Bulk” and also the expectation was the the Packers had found a future Hall-of-Famer.
Things began out poorly for Mandarich, who organized out till the week prior to the continuous season and couldn’t cracked the starting lineup. Mandarich’s poor attitude also rubbed the Packers the wrong means and they reduced him in 1992 after three years of bad performance.
Steroid and substance abuse issues also plagued Mandarich, who took a three-year sabbatical indigenous football to obtain his life in order. Mandarich did invest three an ext years with the Indianapolis Colts before retiring together the just player in the peak 5 the his draft course not to reach the hall of Fame, making green Bay remorse picking Mandarich ahead of Barry Sanders, Derrick Thomas and Deion Sanders.
Next: No. 2
OAKLAND, CA – JANUARY 03: JaMarcus Russell
2. Best NFL breeze busts of all-time – Oakland Raiders QB JaMarcus Russell
The NFL is a quarterback-driven organization so it’s no shock the the top two football player on the perform of best NFL draft busts space passers. The most notorious bust the the 21st century needs to be JaMarcus Russell, who was an utter disaster for the Oakland Raiders.
A standout quarterback for LSU, Russell dazzled NFL scouts in ~ the scouting combine, flashing a large arm and also solid speed for a quarterback. The Raiders organized the top pick in the 2007 draft and fell in love through Russell, acquisition him v a design on Russell leading Oakland earlier to contention after ~ a downward spiral following its 2002 operation to the at sight Bowl.
Like several other busts on this list, Russell staged a prolonged holdout the lasted into the beginning of his very first season, signing a six-year deal worth $68 million after main 1. Russell started just one video game as a rookie prior to being called the starter in 2008, resulting in a damaging two-year stint where he threw 19 interceptions and fumbled 21 times, losing 13 the those.
There were also questions the desire for Russell, who struggled with conditioning and also quickly dropped out of favor v the Raiders, who reduced him after the 2009 season and also tried to recoup practically $10 million in signing bonus money. Russell had a couple of tryouts but never played one more snap in the NFL, cementing his place as among the best NFL draft busts in history.
Next: No. 1
SAN DIEGO – DECEMBER 24: Ryan leaf #16 that the san Diego Chargers drops earlier to pass throughout an NFL soccer game versus the Pittsburgh Steelers play on December 24, 2001, at Qualcomm stadion in san Diego, California. (Photo through David Madison/Getty Images)
1. Best NFL breeze busts that all-time – mountain Diego Chargers QB Ryan Leaf
This may have actually been inevitable however there is no question that Ryan sheet is the biggest NFL breeze bust of every time. That is laughable in hindsight that there to be a legitimate conflict whether the Indianapolis Colts have to take sheet or Peyton Manning v the height pick in the 1998 draft but the Colts clearly made the right an option taking Manning.
The Chargers to be ecstatic come land Leaf, emotion that his strong arm and dynamic potential would lead that to be a superstar. There were far-ranging maturity questions with Leaf and also those pertains to flashed during his rookie season once a video clip of that berating a reporter in the locker room made nationwide headlines.
Leaf’s beat on the field additionally left plenty to be desired as the tossed just two touchdowns and 15 interceptions as a rookie, infuriating his teammates by watch blaming them because that his failures while displaying bad work ethic. The Chargers easily lost confidence in Leaf, cut him after a devastating 2001 season whereby he aided lead the team to a 1-15 record.
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Leaf obtained a 2nd chance through the Dallas Cowboys and did little with it, tossing one touchdown in 3 interceptions in 4 games before retiring in ~ the begin of the 2002 season at the period of 26. While couple of scouts will ever dispute Leaf’s talent, his finish lack the desire to placed in the job-related to be a good NFL quarterback cemented his condition as the biggest NFL breeze bust of all time.