As we continue to inch closer and closer to the 2011 NFL Draft, we want to take a look back at some of the worst draft picks of the last 10 NFL Draft events.
The following names are arguably the worst draftees in not only the last 10 years, but also in NFL Draft history.
10) Peter Warrick, Cincinnati Bengals, 2000- fourth overall
The Peter Warrick hype started when he was a freshman at Florida State. He was a big time play maker, and was a Heisman Trophy contender his senior season, until being suspended for two games for receiving an extreme discount on clothing from a store. The discount was so large that it was considered shoplifting under Florida Law.
Warrick wasn’t completely unproductive with the Bengals, but he failed to emerge as a play maker and could never become a true number one receiver that the Bengals had hoped when they drafted him fourth overall in 2000.
9) Ryan Sims, Kansas City Chiefs, 2002- sixth overall
Ryan Sims was so highly coveted coming out of North Carolina, that the Chiefs grabbed him with their sixth overall pick in 2002. He started every game in his second season, but never made a huge impact, and has just 8.5 sacks in his nine year career.
He was traded to the Buccaneers in 2007, and was recently cut from the team in 2010. It is believed by many that Sims’ collegiate success was partly to do with teams trying to find a solution to stopping Julius Peppers.
8) Mike Williams, Buffalo Bills, 2002- fourth overall
When Mike Williams came out of Texas, the promising left tackle was sure to be the next Orlando Pace or Jon Ogden. The Bills played it safe and allowed Williams to start on the right side, which is something teams do to help the game slow down for rookie offensive tackles.
Williams made the transition to left tackle and became a revolving door for opposing blitzing defenders. He would later lose his job to an undrafted free agent by the name of Jason Peters, who has emerged to be one of the better left tackles in the NFL to this day. For being the fourth overall pick, Williams qualifies as a major bust in NFL Draft history.
7) Byron Leftwich, Jacksonville Jaguars, 2003- seventh overall
It’s unfortunate for the Jaguars because Leftwich was quite the tease. The former Marshall quarterback actually showed promise and progression as an NFL quarterback in both his second and third seasons. But ankle injuries kept Leftwich off of the field, and he could never solidify himself into the starting role again. He had two separate ankle injuries with the Jaguars, and then had another ankle sprain after signing a two year deal with Atlanta.
Leftwich currently is the backup to Ben Roethlisberger in Pittsburgh, but there were much higher expectations for a player drafted seventh overall.
6) David Terrell, Chicago Bears, 2001- eighth overall
David Terrell was absolutely electric at Michigan. Michigan seemed to have a tradition of their top wide receivers to wear the No. 1, and it was evident that Terrell was easily the No. 1 receiver coming into the 2001 NFL Draft.
But Terrell just could not find ways to produce in Chicago. Perhaps it was partially due to the fact that there was never a productive quarterback for the Bears, or just because his speed in the NFL was virtually non-existent and he could not get any separation from defenders.
5) Alex Smith, San Francisco 49ers, 2005- first overall
It’s an unfortunate story for Alex Smith. With Utah starting to represent the Mountain West very well in the NCAA, there was a lot of hype. Urban Meyer would become the next Florida head coach, and Smith was to be the next great San Francisco quarterback.
But injuries, and inconsistency with the offense have lead to poor play from the former Ute. Many apologists for Smith blame the lack of talent around him, including poor wide receiver play, offensive line play, and poor play calling. Smith showed some promise in 2009 helping the 49ers look like a playoff contender again, but 2010 he regressed yet again. It’s clear that he’ll never live up to the No. 1 overall hype; much unlike the other guy the 49ers could have selected in Aaron Rodgers, the Super Bowl XLV MVP.
4) Charles Rogers, Detroit Lions, 2003- second overall
2003 looked to be a great rookie season for Charles Rogers, the highly touted Michigan State wide receiver drafted second overall. Rogers never really got the ball rolling on his career, and his poor attitude, and substance abuse problems seemingly played a large factor.
Rogers couldn’t stay on the field. He broke his collarbone twice in his first two seasons, and would find himself suspended for four games in 2005 after his third violation of the NFL’s substance abuse policy. Rogers would later be released by new head coach Rod Marinelli who dubbed Rogers as a player with poor work ethic. Rogers would try out with a few teams in 2006, and never get signed again. Rogers had to pay back 6.1 million dollars to the Detroit Lions thanks to his breaking of the substance abuse policy which was a clause in his initial contract.
3) Adam “Pacman” Jones, Tennessee Titans, 2005- sixth overall
Perhaps one of the most hyped cornerbacks of the last ten seasons coming out of college was Pacman Jones. He received the nickname “Pacman” based on his ability to “eat” quarterback passes out of the air. The West Virginia product would find himself in problems with the Titans early after he held out for much of his first NFL training camp due to disagreements in contract negotiations based on his off-field activity.
One of the most active off-field players, Pacman would find himself in trouble with the law on numerous occasions. He was arrested for drunk and disorderly conduct on more than one occasion, his car was taken into police custody on a cocaine bust in 2006, and then was later accused of assault and battery, after slamming a dancer’s head on a stage. He was also accused of firing his gun in a public place.
Regardless, the Titans were obligated to cut Jones, who would serve a one year suspension by Commissioner Goodell, and later sign with both the Cowboys and Bengals.
2) David Carr, Houston Texans, 2002- first overall
Some NFL fans have to feel sorry for David Carr. Carr was sacked 268 times in his first five seasons with the Houston Texans. The Texans had no blockers up front for Carr, and the Fresno State product was a scrambling quarterback who also had a tendency to “run into” sacks.
Carr has never thrown for more than 16 touchdowns in a season, and struggled to prevent turnovers, fumbling at least once nearly every game. The Texans removed Carr from their presence prior to the 2007 season, and he would sign to play with Carolina, New York (Giants), and he’s now with San Francisco. The 49ers now feature two former No. 1 overall picks from the Mountain West Conference.
1) JaMarcus Russell, Oakland Raiders, 2007- first overall
Usually, you like to give a quarterback three full seasons to evaluate their future with the team. But with Jamarcus Russell, Al Davis wanted results, and he wanted them immediately. Davis’ yearning for Russell to make such an impact could have something to do with the 68 million dollar deal Russell was given. 31.5 million dollars was guaranteed in Russell’s first and only NFL contract.
The LSU quarterback with the laser, rocket arm never could find a way to stay off the ground, or even complete passes to his fellow receivers. Granted, there wasn’t much help around him, he still found ways to make the Raiders worse than what they already were, which is hard to do.
Russell’s experiments with “Purple Drank”, a mixture of codeine syrup and grape color/flavor, ended up getting him arrested in 2010. Russell reportedly tested positive for codeine at the 2007 NFL Scouting Combine, but Al Davis refused to acknowledge it as a setback, ultimately costing the Raiders millions.
Corey Simon, Philadelphia Eagles, 2000- sixth overall
Reggie Williams, Jacksonville Jaguars, 2001 - ninth overall
Koren Robinson, Seattle Seahawks, 2001- ninth overall
Roy Williams, Dallas Cowboys, 2002- eighth overall
Cadillac Williams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2005- fifth overall
Matt Leinart, Arizona Cardinals, 2006- 10th overall
The Jury Is Still Out… But it’s Coming:
Reggie Bush, New Orleans, 2006- second overall
Vernon Gholston, New York Jets, 2008- sixth overall
Andre Smith, Cincinnati Bengals, 2009- sixth overall
Vince Young, Tennessee Titans, 2006- third overall
Derrick Harvey, Jacksonville Jaguars, 2008- eighth overall
Darrius Heyward-Bey, Oakland Raiders, 2009- seventh overall
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