Drafted by the San Diego Chargers in 1998, Ryan Leaf is a well-known bust. As the number 2 pick of that year, some thought he was even better than the man who went number one, who some of you may have heard of. Unfortunately, Leaf was shaky from the start, in his third game as a professional football player he only completed one of 15 passes. His entire record as a starting QB? 4-17. You can find leaf on another one of our lists, athletes who went to jail.
Robert Griffin III actually had a successful enough rookie year with the Washington Redskins, reaching the playoffs and was looking better than the number one draft pick of his class, Andrew Luck. Sadly, RG3’s luck ran out when he suffered a significant knee injury in his rookie year. He hasn’t been the same since, being benched for Kirk Cousins and leading to huge speculation if he will be dropped at the beginning of the 2015 season. He’s still on the bench.
The talk of the town coming into the 2014 season, Johnny Manziel never quite lived up to his reputation coming into the NFL. Sitting on the bench for the majority of his rookie season he only started when the season was already lost in December, throwing 80 yards and 0 TDs. Combined with on and off the field issues, he was replaced by 35-year-old Josh McCown, Manziel is another predicted bright star warming the bench.
Blaine Gabbert was drafted by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2011 in three seasons Gabbert compiled a 5-22 record, throwing 22 touchdown passes and 24 interceptions. Over that span, he completed 53.3 percent of his passes. in 2014 traded to 49ers for a 6th round pick
Following the retirement of Brett Favre, Christian Ponder took over the job midway through his rookie year and improved enough in 2012 for the Adrian Peterson-led Vikings to finish 10-6 and in the playoffs. But some of the warning signs of ill-timed turnovers and poor decisions under pressure that popped up in his first two seasons persisted. he eventually moved to the Raiders, but was released after the 2015 preseason.
Jamarcus Russell, another player fans thought would rescue the franchise, Russell turned out to be quite the opposite. with a less than 50% completion rate and three terrible seasons, Jamarcus was cut from the Oakland Raiders. After his cut in 2010 Russell was arrested on drug charges and had weight gain issues, however in 2013, he launched an unsuccessful comeback into the NFL.
Courtney Brown. another browns picked that was thought to be a huge boon to their defense, this pass rusher had a tough time staying on the field. injury after injury piled up, with brown starting just 47 out of 80 games in five years. In those games he managed to rack up just 17 quarterback sacks. Brown retired with the Broncos in 2005 after managing 2 sacks in 14 games.
The number 1 pick of the newest NFL franchise, David Carr’s start with the Houston Texans was less than stellar. Carr was a league leader in number of sacks, which you could put down to the offensive line, but those sacks took their toll on Carr, who eventually became too nervous to perform deep throws. In 2006 he was released, and has spent the remainder of his time in the NFL as a backup with Carolina, San Francisco and the New York Giants among others.
Bruce Pickens – The Atlanta Falcons drafted Pickens third overall in the 1991 NFL draft. Being a 1st round pick expectations were high for Pickens, having had an incredible college career. However things didn’t look to good when he started professional football, never starting in more than 4 games through any of the 4 seasons he was in Atlanta, he played a total of 48 games, and recorded only 2 picks.
Brian Bosworth – A college star and highly feared linebacker, he was drafted by the Seattle Seahawks in 1987 and signed a 10 year, 11 million dollar contract. this turned out to be a huge disaster, with bosworth only lasting 2 seasons in the NFL, retiring after not being able to get over a shoulder injury. brian bosworths name now stands as a definition of peaking too soon.