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Football The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts  

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List Rules Vote up the most-hyped first round picks who failed to perform after Draft Day.

The biggest first round NFL Draft pick busts are those players who were drafted really high, got monster rookie contracts then did little to nothing afterwards. From those who were overhyped only to fail to perform to those whose off-field problems outweighed their on-field performance, these are some of the worst NFL Draft picks of all time.

One name is frequently mentioned as not just the worst first round NFL draft pick ever but the biggest NFL Draft bust of all time: Ryan Leaf. In a fierce race with guaranteed Pro Football Hall of Fame future inductee Peyton Manning, Leaf was selected first overall in the 1998 NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers. That's where the fairy tale ends however as on- and off-field issues soon followed. As of 2012, Leaf was serving a lengthy prison sentence for burglary and drug charges. He played just 25 NFL games throwing 14 touchdowns and 36 interceptions.

But Leaf is far from the only NFL Draft bust of note in the history of the league. JaMarcus Russell is frequently mentioned for his inconsistent play and drug issues, not to mention having an amusing athlete mug shot. Bo Jackson was a great NFL player, at least until he dumped the sport and his fans for a baseball career. Don't even get started on quarterbacks drafted by the Cleveland Browns in their miserable history as few, if any, of those stories end well.

While not every first round draft pick is a guaranteed NFL legend, a certain amount of expectation comes with being selected so high and these men all failed miserably. Does a certain NFL Draft bust stick out in your mind as particularly awful? Vote for the worst first round draft picks ever, add any not listed or even re-rank these men who are all among the biggest first round NFL Draft pick busts of all time.
list ordered by

1
512 94
Ryan Leaf is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Quarterback

2
526 89
JaMarcus Russell is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Quarterback

3
362 125
Johnny Manziel is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
doro-the-exploro-gaming added

4
214 65
Todd Marinovich is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Quarterback

5
243 80
Tony Mandarich is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts

6
208 69
Lawrence Philips is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts

7
212 61
Trent Richardson is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
KT32889MD added Running back

8
202 65
Akili Smith is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Quarterback

9
180 55
Charles Rogers is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Wide receiver

10
195 72
Matt Leinart is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Quarterback

11
209 93
Tim Couch is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Quarterback

12
136 53
Art Schlichter is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Quarterback

13
108 45
Andre Ware is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Quarterback

14
126 45
Brady Quinn is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
KT32889MD added Quarterback

15
131 54
Vernon Gholston is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Defensive end, Linebacker

16
141 66
Heath Shuler is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Quarterback

17
123 65
Ki-Jana Carter is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Running back

18
125 54
Courtney Brown is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Defensive lineman

19
85 28
Maurice Clarett is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Running back

20
99 42
Dan McGwire is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Kenne_W added Quarterback - Drafted ahead of Brett Favre. Younger brother of MLB legend Mark McGwire.

21
77 23
Justin Blackmon is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Wide receiver

22
94 39
Brian Bosworth is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
ScottPolichette added Linebacker

23
126 66
Joey Harrington is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Quarterback

24
64 23
Curtis Enis is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
KT32889MD added Running back

25
59 31
Steve Entman is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Steve Entman Defensive Tackle