We are all in agreement that the Patriots picking up Tom Brady as the 199th pick in the 2000 Draft was the best Draft Pick ever. Brady was almost not picked at all and this year he could be playing for his 8th Super Bowl title – check out Fanduel’s Super Bowl odds for more information on that.
If Brady was the best Draft pick then who was the worst? That is what we are going to find out today. Who do you think will be number 1?
#10 – Rae Carruth, Carolina Panthers (1997, 27th overall pick)
This pick was bad through no fault of the Panthers. After 2 seasons of playing for the Panthers Carruth was arrested and charged with Conspiracy to Commit Murder. He spent 19 years in jail.
#9 – Vernon Gholston, New York Jets (2008, sixth overall pick)
Gholston set a college record for most sacks in one season (that stood until 2018). However, he was then paid $18 million by the Jets for 3 seasons – during which he scored a grand total of 0 sacks.
#8 – Andre Ware, Detroit Lions (1990, Seventh overall pick)
Andre Ware broke 26 different collegiate passing records during his junior season at Houston in 1989. He only ended up starting 6 games for the Lions as a signal-caller and didn’t have a good game.
#7 – Justin Blackmon, Jacksonville Jaguars (2012, fifth overall pick)
Blackmon seemed like a great pick at first – he had a corker of a rookie season (64 receptions, 865 yards). But after multiple suspensions, he was only able to play 4 games in 2013. He didn’t play for the Jaguars again after that.
#6 – Rick Mirer, Seattle Seahawks (1993, second overall pick)
The Seahawks weren’t subtle about the fact that they had been planning to pick Drew Bledsoe in the 1993 draft. But he went in the first pick, so they were forced to settle for Rick Mirer. Unfortunately, Mirer was nothing like Bledsoe and really wasn’t talented enough to play in the NFL.
#5 – Heath Shuler, Washington Football Team (1994, third overall pick)
This story makes us feel really sorry for Shuler because he wasn’t a bad player. He was just unlucky with the team that picked him.
In 1994 Washington picked 2 quarterbacks in the draft – one in 3rd and one in 197th. Shuler ended up losing his role to the 197th pick of the year.
#4 – Charles Rogers, Detroit Lions (2003, second overall pick)
The Lions had a choice between Charles Rogers and Andre Johnson in 2003. They picked Rogers. Poor Lions – it is very likely that Andre Johnson will end up being a Hall of Famer.
Rogers played for the Lions for 3 seasons before leaving the NFL for health reasons.
#3 – JaMarcus Russell, Raiders (2007, first overall pick)
Everyone knew that JaMarcus Russell had little to no work ethic. His college mates warned the raiders, as did his college coaches, even the head of the NFL warned them. And still, they wasted their first pick on him.
They ended up firing him after three years after he refused to train over the summer.
#2 – Ryan Leaf, Chargers (1998, second overall pick)
The Chargers wanted to pick Payton Manning in the 1998 draft, but their rivals the Colts had the pick before them. So, when Manning was taken they went for option 2 – Ryan Leaf.
In his rookie season, he threw 2 touchdown passes and 15 interceptions. After that the media hated him and he was bullied out of the sport.
#1 – Akili Smith, Bengals (1999, third overall pick)
There are two reasons why Smith is at the number 1 spot on this list – his career and what the Bengals gave up to pick him.
Smith only played 17 games – he lost 14 of them, threw 5 touchdown passes but also managed to throw 11 interceptions. His pass completion was under 50% too.
To get the third pick in 1999, the Saints offer the Bengals their first-, third-, fourth-, fifth-, sixth-, and seventh-round selections in 1999 as well as a first-round pick in both 2000 and 2001, along with a second-round pick in 2002.
They said no so they could pick Akili Smith.
In conclusion, we think Akili Smith deserves the title as the worst ever Draft pick. Akili Smith wasn’t the only bad Draft pick that the Bengals made in the 1990s, but he really was one of the worst. Every choice they made that year is still a mystery to us.