The NFL Draft’s 10 Biggest Busts of the Decade

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It is closing in on draft season, and the 2000’s are coming to an end. This seems like a perfect time to put together a list that highlights the 10 biggest busts of the decade.

There is no science to determining what makes a bust, but to make this list I considered the level of hype a player had coming into the draft and then the level of failure said player had.

It was hard to narrow down a list to just ten. Busts like Courtney Brown and Joey Harrington failed to make the list, but they were strongly considered.

So without further introduction, enjoy the list and hope that your team’s general manager can recognize talent better than the men who made the follow selections:

10. Vernon Gholston – Selected 6th overall by the New York Jets in 2008

It may be unfair to list a player who is only in his second season as one of the biggest busts of the decade, but Vernon Gholston is a special case. People everywhere fell in love with Gholston after he blew up at the NFL Scouting Combine.

Gholston put up ridiculous numbers and had the scouts drooling. He was also one of only two people to record a sack against former Michigan OT Jake Long during his collegiate career.

With all the athleticism, Gholston seemed to be a perfect fit at outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense. Gholston has yet to make any serious contributions though. His largest contribution to the team is keeping the bench warm.

In his two years, Gholston has totaled a whopping 24 tackles and he has yet to record a sack.

9. David Carr – Selected 1st overall by the Houston Texans in 2002

David Carr was the first selection in 2002 and he was the first draft pick in the Texan’s team history. Carr made a splash during his collegiate career when he led his Freson State Bulldogs to a 11-3 record and the team climbed to as high as 8th overall in the polls.

Carr won the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm award after his senior year and during his career he threw for 70 touchdowns and only 23 interceptions. Carr even had his number retired at Fresno State.

During his pro career, Carr never led the Texans to a winning season in his five years with the team. Carr was released and later signed with the Carolina Panthers and New York Giants as a back-up.
Carr has only 65 touchdowns in his 8 year career. He has thrown more interceptions (70).

8. Mike Williams – Selected 10th overall by the Detroit Lions in 2005

Williams was an excellent wideout at the University of Southern California where he received All Pac-10 honors twice, and was a Biletnikoff Award finalist in 2003. The receiver only played two seasons at the school and totaled 30 touchdowns.

Williams attempted to enter for the 2004 NFL Draft, but the Supreme Court ruled him ineligible. Since paperwork was filed and an agent was hired, Williams was also ineligible to return to USC.

For some reason that is not known, Williams was still drafted 10th overall by the Lions after sitting out an entire season.

After being a first round pick, Williams started only four games his rookie season. In those four games he caught 29 balls for 350 yards and 1 touchdown. Williams only totaled 15 more catches in his career following his rookie season.

7. Adam “Pacman” Jones – Selected 6th overall by the Tennessee Titans in 2005

Adam Jones makes this list for reasons not just associated with football. Jones appeared to have a promising future in the NFL. He was a sensational kick returner and was in the process of becoming a top tier corner in the league.

Jones then had numerous off the field incidents that resulted in him being suspended for the entire 2007 season. He was eventually traded to the Dallas Cowboys for a fourth-round pick the following year and Jones was once again suspended for 4 games. In his return to the field, he suffered a season-ending neck injury.

Jones was cut by Dallas following the 2008 season and he has not found any work since.

6. Troy Williamson – Selected 7th overall by the Minnesota Vikings in 2005

Troy Williamson was immediately thrown into a tough situation. The Vikings were looking to replace Randy Moss and they selected him with their first pick in ’05.

Williamson was often a league leader in drops, and he has yet to have more than two touchdown receptions in the same season in his 5 year career.

Williamson blamed poor eye sight for his troubles, but even after correcting his vision he was just awful. He now plays for the Jacksonville Jaguars after being traded for a 6th-round pick in 2008.

For the Final Five Continue…