Biggest NFL Draft Busts: Top 10 Worst No. 1 Picks In History

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Every year, all 32 National Football League franchises come together for the annual player selection. The NFL Draft has been around for 83 years, meaning there have been plenty of athletes whose names were called to have an opportunity to achieve their professional dreams.

And every year, there is one player who earns the honor of being the cream of the crop and being the No. 1 pick.

Unfortunately, with the glory of being the top player in your draft class comes great responsibility. There will be overwhelming pressure and expectations on the players who are the first overall pick, and not everyone is cut out for that.

That means we will have major disappoints and potentially franchise-ruining mistakes.

Plenty of franchises have had to face this reality — especially the Cleveland Browns –, and some players will forever be tagged with the “bust” label.

Who were the biggest disappointments and worst No. 1 picks throughout the years?

Let’s have a look.


10. Kenneth Sims


Sims had a familiar story: he entered the league as a player who many thought would revolutionize his position. The former Texas Longhorns defensive end never found his footing as a professional and recorded just 17 sacks throughout eight seasons in the league. His inconsistently led to the defensive end starting every game only once. It also didn’t help that Sims was known for his lack of conditioning — this will be a familiar trend — and he was ultimately released after being arrested and charged with possession of cocaine.

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College: Texas
NFL Team: New England Patriots (1982-1989)
Position: Defensive End
NFL Career Stats: 17 career sacks, 5 fumble recoveries, 64 starts
College Stats: N/A, two-time All-American, Vince Lombardi Award winner