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
224 37
Ryan Leaf is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Ryan Leaf Quarterback

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2
226 36
JaMarcus Russell is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
JaMarcus Russell Quarterback

3
124 24
Johnny Manziel is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
doro-the-exploro-gaming added Johnny Manziel

4
118 36
Tony Mandarich is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts

5
101 29
Todd Marinovich is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Todd Marinovich Quarterback

6
102 30
Lawrence Philips is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts

7
106 35
Akili Smith is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Akili Smith Quarterback

8
100 29
Charles Rogers is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Charles Rogers Wide receiver

9
65 13
Trent Richardson is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
KT32889MD added Trent Richardson Running back

10
99 44
Tim Couch is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Tim Couch Quarterback

11
87 34
Heath Shuler is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Heath Shuler Quarterback

12
47 15
Andre Ware is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Andre Ware Quarterback

13
89 38
Matt Leinart is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Matt Leinart Quarterback

14
71 27
Vernon Gholston is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Vernon Gholston Defensive end, Linebacker

15
69 27
Art Schlichter is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Art Schlichter Quarterback

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16
61 30
Ki-Jana Carter is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Ki-Jana Carter Running back

17
72 31
Joey Harrington is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Joey Harrington Quarterback

18
49 16
Dan McGwire is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Kenne_W added Dan McGwire Quarterback - Drafted ahead of Brett Favre. Younger brother of MLB legend Mark McGwire.

19
43 12
Brady Quinn is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
KT32889MD added Brady Quinn Quarterback

20
69 33
Courtney Brown is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Courtney Brown Defensive lineman

21
41 13
Steve Spurrier is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
willyboymcoy added Steve Spurrier

22
22 6
Steve Entman is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Steve Entman Defensive Tackle

23
38 13
Aaron Maybin is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Kenne_W added Aaron Maybin Defensive end, Linebacker - #11 in '09. Cut several times in his 2 year career.

24
40 15
Jason Smith is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Jason Smith Offensive Tackle

25
42 17
Matt Jones is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Matt Jones Quarterback

26
25 11
Rick Mirer is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Rick Mirer Quarterback

27
51 27
Brandon Weeden is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
manupinsky added Brandon Weeden Quarterback

28
22 5
Brian Bosworth is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
ScottPolichette added Brian Bosworth Linebacker

29
21 4
Cade McNown is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
KT32889MD added Cade McNown Quarterback

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30
39 19
Aaron Curry is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Aaron Curry Linebacker

31
45 19
Reggie Rogers is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Reggie Rogers Defensive tackle, Tackle

32
37 18
Derrick Harvey is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Derrick Harvey Defensive end

33
21 5
Curtis Enis is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
KT32889MD added Curtis Enis Running back

34
36 21
Peter Warrick is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Peter Warrick Return specialist, Wide receiver

35
22 10
Kyle Boller is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Kyle Boller Quarterback

36
45 25
Keith McCants is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Keith McCants Defensive end, Linebacker

37
61 39
Blaine Gabbert is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Blaine Gabbert Quarterback

38
19 3
Aundray Bruce is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Aundray Bruce Defensive end, Linebacker, Tight end

39
37 21
Troy Williamson is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Troy Williamson Wide receiver

40
59 37
Mark Sanchez is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Kenne_W added Mark Sanchez Quarterback

41
16 4
Maurice Clarett is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Maurice Clarett Running back

42
16 8
Kelly Stouffer is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Kelly Stouffer Quarterback

43
16 4
Justin Blackmon is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Justin Blackmon Wide receiver

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44
22 12
Kenneth Sims is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
JeffreyJustus added Kenneth Sims Defensive end

45
17 7
Mike Mamula is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Mike Mamula Defensive end, Linebacker, Defensive lineman

46
30 15
Wendell Bryant is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Wendell Bryant Defensive tackle, Tackle

47
27 15
Jamal Reynolds is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Jamal Reynolds Defensive end, Defensive lineman

48
43 27
Mike Junkin is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
Mike Junkin Linebacker

49
21 9
J. P. Losman is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
KT32889MD added J. P. Losman Quarterback

50
13 7
Trev Alberts is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Biggest First Round NFL Draft Pick Busts
muzziac added Trev Alberts Linebacker