The NFL Draft's 10 Biggest Busts of the Decade

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Since joining the Jaguars, Williamson has 8 catches for 64 yards and 1 touchdown.

5. Matt Leinart – Selected 10th overall by the Arizona Cardinals in 2006

Leinart was one of the most decorated players entering the 2006 draft. He was a Heisman Trophy winner, national champ, Walter Camp Award winner, and a two-time NCAA Quarterback of the Year.

Leinart was off to a decent start in his rookie campaign. He started 11 games and threw for 2,547 yards. Unfortunately, Leinart only added 11 touchdowns and he had 12 interceptions.

Since his first year, Leinart has only six starts. He has six interceptions and only three touchdowns in the last three years.

The coaching staff did everything in their power to give Leinart the starting job in 2008, but Leinart failed to show leadership and understanding of the offense. Kurt Warner is the current Cardinals starter.

Leinart appears to have a limited future in Arizona. He has never been able to look impressive and that is with two All-Pro wideouts, Anquan Boldin and Larry Fitzerald, receiving the ball.

4. Peter Warrick – Selected 4th overall by the Cincinnati Bengals in 2000

Peter Warrick had an incredible amount of hype around him. The two-time All-American was supposed to be a franchise receiver in Cincinnati; he only played five seasons with the team.In those five seasons, Warrick never broke the 1,000 yard mark and never totaled more than 7 touchdowns.

In 2004, Warrick was limited due to injuries. He only started one game and played in four. It was that season that Bengals wide receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh took over as the number two wideout.

After his release in 2005, Warrick’s career has gone even more down hill. He played one year with the Seattle Seahawks and followed that up with stints in the Arena Football League, Canadian Football League, and Indoor Football League.

He was most recently a member of California Redwoods in the new United Football League (UFL).

3. Maurice Clarett – Selected in the 3rd round by the Denver Broncos in 2005

Clarett was not a 1st-round pick, but he was still a draft bust of epic proportions.

As a freshman, Clarett led the Ohio State Buckeyes to a 14-0 record and a National Championship title. During the season Clarett rushed for 1,237 yards and 18 touchdowns. It was all downhill from here.

Clarett, like USC wideout Mike Williams, applied for early entry into the NFL Draft. His appeal was denied and then Clarett was ineligible for the 2004 season.

He was drafted in the third-round by the Denver Broncos. Clarett had many issues with the coaching staff and he never played a down in the NFL.

A year later, in 2006, Clarett was arrested on armed robbery charges. A legal battle followed that lasted until Clarett was again arrested in August of the same year.

When all was said and done, Clarett was sentenced to 7 and a half years in prison, a sentence that he is currently serving.

2. JaMarcus Russell – Selected 1st overall by the Oakland Raiders in 2007

JaMarcus Russell was only drafted first-overall because he has a huge arm and he impressed scouts when he threw for 305 yards and 3 TDs in the Sugar Bowl during his junior year against a very weak Notre Dame defense.

Russell missed most of his rookie season because he was involved in a hold out. Russell has never recovered.

He has only 18 touchdowns compared to his 22 interceptions. Russell is one of the most inaccurate quarterbacks in the league and he has been benched this season in favor of Bruce Gradkowski.

Gradkowski was injured and Russell was still not called on. The team instead turned to Charlie Frye.

In a season where Russell was supposed to have a breakout year, he has a pathetic 3 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. His time in Oakland is coming to an end much to the pleasure of Raider fans everywhere.

1. Charles Rogers – Selected 2nd overall by the Detroit Lions in 2003

Rogers drew comparisons to Randy Moss during his college career at Michigan State.

Rogers’ NFL career can be described in one word: mess. He played in only 6 games during his first two seasons. In both 2003 and 2004 he suffered a broken collarbone that sidelined him. He was set to return in 2005, but received a suspension for violating the NFL’s Substance Abuse Policy. Rogers was never able to recover.

The Lions released him following the season, and that was it. Rogers was out of the league after only three embarrassing seasons.
Since leaving the NFL, Rogers has been arrested three times. Rogers had all the potential to be a top NFL wideout, but he threw it all away with his marijuana and pain killer abuse.

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  • Matt

    Being a Browns fan I am very familiar with draft busts, which is why I’m very surprised that Courtney Brown (1st Overall) or Gerard Warren (3rd Overall)didn’t make your list.

    A year earlier and I’m assuming Tim Couch would’ve made the top of the list.

    Great post :)

  • Jon

    I wouldn’t really call Leinart a “bust” because he is stuck behind a guy who has been playing at an all pro level. His stats in garbage time really don’t mean anything. He may be done in Arizona but he has yet to prove he isn’t a capable starter like every other guy on your list has.

  • ryanleaf

    are you frickin kidding me?
    where’s Ryan Leaf?
    Biggest bust ever.
    this top 10 list = #FAIL

  • timin

    you know what a decade it is right? it ain’t 1998.

  • jake

    I’d probably have put JaFatass over Charles Rogers only for the money that the Raiders are wasting on him.

    I’d also have considered putting Reggie Bush on here. Yeah, he’s shown flashes of brilliance, but overall it looks like he’s never quite figured out how to be a NFL running back.

  • slim420

    add darius heyward-bey to the mix

  • linedrivehitter

    How about Alex Smith, the #1 pick in 2005. His career QB rating is a lowly 67.7. He has thrown 35 touchdowns and 43 interceptions and was benched in favor of a QB (Shaun Hill) that only had two kneel downs under his belt in seven years in the league.

  • Rodeodoc

    I would have included Cadillac Williams, golden boy of the Bucs. Like his namesake, he spends most of his time getting repaired.

    • Kwame


  • Zach

    At least the Cadillac has some stats. Most of the bums on this list can’t say they have much if any stats.

    Well David Carr might have the single season sacked record.

  • Mike

    It’s too early to consider Gholston as a bust, he’s only in his second year. Guve him time, and he will make hia way obn the field

  • AJK

    Joey Harrington anyone?

  • Mark D

    While Carr is definitely a bust, he at least has an excuse: a horrific offensive line that never once got close to protecting him the way an NFL line should.

    And I’d replace Ghoulston (who doesn’t have near enough of a body of work to be judged upon, IMHO) with either the Williams out of Texas (who just flamed out with the Cowboys) or Brady Quinn.

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  • Yuli

    Wow! Who made this list?! Ryan Leaf anyone?!

  • Greg

    What about Ryan Leaf and Tony Mandarich?

  • jdove

    hey, this is one of our older posts… be sure to check out our more recent stuff…

  • jdove

    I would check out our BUST-O-Meter; its where he looked at the 2010 draftees and which ones had the highest chances to bust……

  • Kwame

    THat last one about Charlie rodgers is bullshyt, He is still a great wide reciver an in every game he played he showed up…an offense is a team game in the n.f.l. an he never had a decent quaterback too get it there an he still made plays, an pacman jones, u guys are shyting me rite…is this goin off of skill or off feild problems if so add the overrated rapiest Big ben or how about my personal best an favorite player of all time Deion Sanders or shyt Micheal Irvin crackhead this list was cool til those to name pop up(rodger &pacman) everybody has issues but those r great ”football” players