NFL's One and Done: Top 10 One-Hit Wonders Over the Last Five Seasons
The average NFL career only lasts 3.3 years. You're going to have your players like Peyton Manning who have long successful careers, and then you'll have guys who don't even get to see a down in the league.
Then there are players who seem like they are going to have a long succesful career in the NFL, for a short period of time. Players that show so much promise for one season, then just never able to find the same success as they did in that memorable season. These players are called one hit wonders.
There have been many notable players like this in the history of the NFL. Ickey Woods for one, a running back for the Bengals who rushed for 15 touchdowns in his rookie season and helped lead the Bengals to Super Bowl XXIII. An Injury forced him on the sideline for 13 months and never was able to play like he did before.
Joining him is a list of the most extraordinary scrubs from the last five years that could only put in one good season. Sometimes injury caused this, sometimes it was a new star that took their job or with some players it just can't be explained.
So here are the top 10 one hit wonders of the NFL from the last five seasons.
10. Lamont Jordan, HB
Before the breakout: The Jets drafted Jordan in the second round of the 2001 draft. He was mainly used as a back-up for Curtis Martin in his four years as a Jet.
One shining season: Jordan signed a five year $27.5 million with the Raiders in 2005. In his first season he was able to rush for1,025 yards. In addition to the running game, Jordan was also an asset in the receiving game catching 70 receptions, which was the most by any running back that year.
Aftermath: Jordan was sidelined 10 games in to the 2006 season with an injury. The next season, Jordan got off to a fast start in the 2007 season with 350 yards and two touchdowns in his first three games but an injury had him sidelined.
Backup, Justin Fargas, proved to be very productive while Jordan was injured and eventually took over the starting job when Jordan was healthy. He was then cut by the Rraiders at the conclusion of the season.
Jordan was briefly with the Patriots for a season where he rushed for 363 yards in the 2008 season. He was then signed by the Broncos for 2009 where he only rushed for 86 yards.
He is currently not an any NFL team.
9. Kevin Curtis , WR
Before the breakout: Curtis was drafted by the Rams in the third round of the 2003 draft. He sat out most of his rookie season with a broken fibula and only played in four games. The next three seasons he would be a productive third receiver to Isaac Bruce and Torry Holt, averaging 567 yards a season and scoring a total of 12 touchdowns.
One shining season: After the 2006 season Curtis signed a 6-year, $32 million deal with the Eagles. Curtis quickly became McNabb's favorite target in the 2007 season, having 77 receptions, 1110 receiving yards, and six touchdowns, which all lead the team.
Aftermath: Injuries caught up to Curtis after the 2007 season. Curtis only played in 9 games in the 2008 season because of a sports hernia. The next season he would miss 12 games because of arthroscopic surgery on his knee. He would be released by the eagles after the 2009 season.
8. Ladell Betts, HB
Before the breakout: Betts was drafted by the Redskins in the second round of the 2002 draft. He spent his first four years as a back-u averaging 317 yards a season.
One shinig Season: Betts stepped into the main back role when Portis went down with a knee injury in the 2006 season. He started nine games getting 245 carries and 1,154 yards with 4.7 yards a carry. He was also third on the team in receiving yards and receptions with 53 catches and 445 yards.
Aftermath: Portis came back in the 2007 season and Betts went back to his normal routine as a back-up. His carries declined over his last three seasons with the Redskins and he was eventually released after the 2009 season.
He currently is a back-up for the Saints.
7. Drew Bennett
Before the breakout: Bennett was signed to the Titans as an undrafted free agent in 2001. He had 329 receiving yards and touchdown in his rookie campaign. He racked up 478 yards in his sophmore season and 504 yards with four touchdowns in his third season.
One shining season: In his 2004 season, Drew Bennett became Steve McNairs' favorite target. He started all 16 games racking 1,247 yards, on 80 receptions and even scoring 11 touchdowns.
Aftermath: the next season Bennett saw less balls coming his way only having 53 receptions on 738 yards. He put up similar numbers the next season with 46 receptions and 737 yards. He then signed a six year $30 million deal for the Rams after the 2006 season.
He didn't do much for the Rams only catching 33 balls for 375 yards. Next season Bennett only caught one pass for four yards. He was then released by the Rams after the 2008 season and signed a one year contract with the Ravens. An injury forced Bennett to retire in the offseason.
6. Ken Hamlin, SS
Before the breakout: Hamlin was orginally drafted by the Seahawks in 2003 and played four seasons with them. He was pretty solid safety with 8 interceptions and 296 tackles in his four years with the Seahawks. In 2007 he signed a one year $2.5 million contract with the Cowboys.
The one shining season: In his 2007 season, Hamlin was a vital addition to the Cowboys. He was able to rack up five interceptions, and 15 pass break-ups. He was eventually named to the pro bowl.
The Cowboys put the franchise tag on him and eventually signed a six year $38 million contract. He was also named a defensive captain for the 2008 season.
Aftermath: Hamlin never was able live up to the success of a defensive captain. In the 2008 season he started all 16 games and was only able to get one interception and two pass deflections. Then in the 2009 season he started 12 games and had no interceptions. He was eventually released by the Cowboys in the 2010.
He currently is the second string safety for the Ravens.
5. Kevin Jones, HB
The one shining season: After being drafted 30th overall in the 2004 draft, Kevin Jones got off to a fast start in his rookie year. He would run for 1,133 on the ground, averaging 4.7 yards a carry and running for five touchdowns.
He was only the third running back in Lions history to rush for 1,000 yards along Barry Sanders and Billy Sims.
Aftermath: Jones productivity decreased next season only averaging 3.6 yards a carry and running for 664 yards. This lead the way for Tatum Bell to get more runs and Jones to get less carries.
He was having a similar year in 2006, with 181 rushes for 668 yards and 3.8 yards a carry, until an injury sidelined him for the rest of the season. In 2007 his carries decreased to 153 running for 581 with a 3.8 yards a carry average and he was eventually cut from the Lions at the end of the season.
The Bears eventually picked him up in 2008. He was one and done with the Bears only having 109 yards that season and being dropped at the end of the 2008 season.
He is currently playing for the UFL Hartford Colonials
4. Damon Huard, QB
Before the breakout: Huard was an undrafted free agent who mainly served as a back-up. he played for the Dolphins from 1997-2000, then the Pats from 2001-2003. he was then signed by the Chiefs and saw no playing time his first two seasons.
One shining season: In the 2006 season, Trent Green went down in the first game of the season and gave the green light for Huard.
Huard didn't take this oppurtunity for granted, he started eight games and was 5-3 as a starter. In his short time as a starter he posted 1,878 yards, 11 touchdowns and only one interception. This translated into a 98 QB rating which lead the league.
A groin injury ended Huard's magical run and sidelined him for the rest of the season.
Aftermath: After the 2006 season, Huard was signed to a three year extension with the Cheifs and Green was to the Dolphins. Huard started 10 games in the 2007 season throwing 11 touchdowns and 13 interceptions.
Huard was given another shot in 2008 starting three more games but threw only two touchdowns on 4 interceptions.
Huard was released after the 2008 season. He was brefily with the 49er's but was cut before the season.
3. Nathan Vasher, CB
Before the breakout: Vasher was drafted in the fourth round of the 2004 draft by the Bears. He had an impressive rookie season recording five interceptions and 29 tackles.
One shining season: In the 2005 season, Vasher became one of the best conerbacks in the NFL. He had eight interceptions, which lead the NFC, and recorded 46 tackles. He eventually was named to the pro bowl and all-pro teams at the end of the season.
Aftermath: Vasher had a series of injuries in the 2006 season which caused him to miss portions of the season. As a result, he was only able to record three interceptions.
Vasher continued to struggle with injuries and only started nine games in the next two seasons. He eventually lost his starting job in the 2009 season, and was cut after the season.
Vasher signed a two-year contract with the Chargers on March 29, 2010 but was released in September before playing a game with the team.
He signed a one-year deal with the Lions in September and is currently a back-up for them.
2. Rex Grossman, QB
Before the breakout: Rex Grossman was drafted by the Bears in first round of the 2003 draft. Grossman would start three games in his rookie season throwing 437 yards two touchdowns and an interception.
He was named the starter for the 2004 season but only started three games due to injuries to his knee ligaments. Grossman would then only start one game in 2005 because of an ankle injury he suffered in the preseason.
One shining season: Rex Grossman got off to a fast start in his first year as a starter. He threw 10 touchdowns only 3 interceptions and 1200? yards.The season was a rollercoaster ride for Grossman though, he had a QB rating of over 100 in seven games and had four games with a QB rating of under 40.
Regardless, he still helped the Bears to a 13-3 record finishing and their first super bowl since 1985, finishing the regular season with 3,193 passing yards 23 touchdowns and 20 interceptions.
Aftermath: Grossman would start off the 2007 season rough with a 45.2 pass rating and ten turnovers through three games. He was benched in week four, but got his Job back only too have his knee injured again. He would start 7 games that year with 1,411 yards, four touchdowns, and seven interceptions.
Rex Grossman would resign a one year contract with the Bears only to be a back-up to Kyle Orton in the 2008 season. In 2009 he was a back-up for Texans. He is currently a back-up for the Redskins.
1. Derek Anderson, QB
Before the breakout: Anderson was drafted by the Ravens in the sixth round in the 2005 draft. He was waived a couple games into the 2005 season and picked up by the Browns. He didn't see any action in his rookie year but started a couple games in his sophmore year. In his three starts in the 2006 season he threw 5 touchdowns and 8 interceptions.
One shining season: With starter Charlie Frye playing poorly in the 2007 season opener, Anderson got the green light and took advantage of it. Anderson got the starting job next week and Frye was traded two days later.
Anderson seemed to be the franchise quarterback that the Browns have been looking for. He threw for 3,787 yards 29 touchdowns and 19 interceptions, and made the 2008 pro bowl. He was 10-5 that season as a starter and the future was looking promising for the Browns.
Aftermath: The Browns signed Anderson to a three year extension. He started nine games throwing just 1,615 yards and throwing 9 touchdowns and 8 interceptions. In the 2008 season, he had the worst QB rating in the league.
In training camp, Anderson last a quarterback battle to Brady Quinn and lost his starting job. He eventually got it back three games into the season with Quinn playing poorly but didn't keep it.He started seven games throwing only three touchdowns and 11 interceptions. Which again was worst in the league among players who played in at least 8 games.
He was released by the Browns after that season and signed with the Cardinals. He had another chance to redeem himself with Matt Leinart's departure this season. He started the first four games for the Cards and threw 5 interceptions and 3 touchdowns. He is currently second string for the Cardinals after being benched before week five.
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