The NFL draft is approaching and RG3 is coming….we assume, but keep in mind these are the Redskins. With all the draft discussion going on I felt it was a fitting time to go over the Redskins top 10 draft busts of all time. This list is only about a players time in DC, not on some other teams, because who cares about other teams? Most players on this list, but not all, were first rounders:
10. Taylor Jacobs: WR Florida – 2003 Round 2 Pick number 44
Well, Taylor Jacobs might not be a true bust because nothing much was expected. He was the Skins first pick of the 2003 draft and we can thank The Ole Ball Coach for this one. Over his 3 years in DC, Jacobs had 30 catches for 315 yards. At the time of this pick the Redskins had other needs, such as O-line depth (not at lot has changed in 2012 and we still need that). Taylor Jacobs is not so much the bust at number 10 because he was awful, but rather for the Redskins picking him in the first place.
9. Rod Gardner: WR Clemson – Round One Pick 15
Taken by the Redskins 15th overall in 2001 out of Clemson (1st mistake nothing good ever comes out of Clemson), Gardner was supposed to be the next Art Monk (Second try at this we will get to the first one a little later). I would love to just stick Gardner under the bus, because unfortunately I bought into him BIG TIME. Other than looking like some sort of small dog you may see in a purse, he did pass the eye test. But Rod never had a QB in DC, which is part of the reason he is so low on the list. But QB problems aside, he was still the 15th overall pick putting him in the top half of the first round, and if you have that kind of talent then you should be able to make the QB situation better by yourself.
8. Jason Campbell: QB Auburn – Round One Pick 25 AND Carlos Rogers: CB Auburn – Round One Pick 9
This is one of two on our list that I have grouped together. However, I pin very little of their bust status on these players. Jason Campbell went undefeated his senior year at Auburn (for those of you who do not know they are in the SEC, the best conference in the country) he could and still can play, but he was never put in a position to succeed and in my opinion never had the support of the fans (other then this guy, how did Donovan work out for us? Sexy Rexy?). Carlos Rodgers was the 9th overall pick in the draft and the 3rd CB taken. Rodgers would have been fine in DC had he been able to catch the ball, but when you can’t do that teams will target you because the end result will be either an incomplete pass or pass interference. Both of these players have had success outside of DC where they have the support of the fans and organizations they play for, but DC was just a wrong fit from the start.
7. Laron Landry: SS LSU – Round One Pick 6
If no one else is going to say it then I am. Dirty 30 sucks. I actually just flinched in my chair and he bit on the double move. You want to say “Oh but he hit so hard”, yeah he did after the receiver caught the ball and tucked it away because he was 3 steps late on the play. Also, while we are on the subject, you know who doesn’t post body building shots online? Ed Reed. You know who’s going to the Hall of Fame? Ed Reed. If you do not believe me watch him play Tom Brady twice this season and see how that works out for him.
6. Devin Thomas: WR Michigan State – Round 2 Pick 34 AND Malcolm Kelly: WR Oklahoma – Round 2 Pick 51
*Fred Davis is a blunt away from making this a 3 way*
These 2 were supposed to change the offense, supposed to give us outside play makers, and what they gave us was 71 catches 847 yards and 3 touchdowns….COMBINED. Malcolm Kelly could not stay healthy, just like he could not stay healthy in college, probably high school, and possibly jr. high. Devin Thomas could not understand the offense, other than running in a straight line, possibly because he only had about 15 or so D1 college games under his belt. The second round picks were a complete waste, and the Skins organization sold these two to the fan base as if they were Chris Carter and Randy Moss.
5. Patrick Ramsey: QB Tulane – Round One Pick 32
The term “reaching” for a player is defined by Patrick Ramsey. The Skins wanted a QB so they took one, one who was by all accounts not ready and would not be any time soon. There was not a QB taken after him until the 4th round when the Jaguars took David Garrard (who obviously is better than Ramsey). Ramsey, by not fault of his own, got his butt kicked because of his O-line, or lack of. After that he got gun-shy and developed what I like to call David Carr syndrome — who was selected first in the same draft oddly enough.
4. Michael Westbrook: WR Colorado – Round One Pick 4
This was the Redskins first attempt to replace Art Monk and it did not work out so hot. Westbrook once again, like most WR’s the Redskins choose in the draft, had a million dollar body and a 5 cent head. Westbrook gave a good effort for about 16 games in 1999 posting over 1,000 yards receiving, then in 2000 as a follow-up, produced 9 catches for 103 yards….the entire season. Westbrook’s biggest problem was immaturity. This was never more clear than when he beat the crap out of teammate Stephen Davis for calling him some form of a homosexual slur. Westbrook was a jerk and to be honest the only one on this list I am happy ended up doing little to nothing in the NFL.
3. The entire 1970’s
For 10 years the Redskins did not have a first round pick…. and actually for 8 of the 10 years of the decade they did not have a second or 3rd round pick either. I understand that George Allen was all about the old guys and hated rookies, but seriously?? For example: In 1980 they had a first round pick which they used on Art Monk, the following year they selected Mark May. The year after that — they won the super bowl. See how drafting works? This also is so high on the list because it became a future trend, as the Redskins still trade away draft picks for old players (I won’t list them its to painful) and struggle to develop depth much like the teams of the 70’s.
2. Desmond Howard: WR Michigan – Round One Pick 4
Desmond Howard was a kick returner, not a wide out, and kick returners SHOULD NEVER get picked 4th overall. Cue the Redskins. The thing that makes this pick so bad is the two WR’s taken after Howard was selected. Carl Pickens (540 career receptions) and Jimmy Smith (862 career receptions) combined for almost as many total career catches (1,402) than Howard had total yards (1,597). Howard was an all around bust (minus his one super bowl moment) who did not pan out any place, and with 66 total catches in 3 years……he definitely did not work out in DC.
1. Heath Shuler: QB Tennessee – Round One Pick 3
Shuler was a great athlete at Tennessee, he could run and make all different kinds of throws. At the time of the draft, the Redskins needed a QB in a desperate way, and it came down to Shuler and Trent Dilfer. The Redskins went the way of Shuler, who then went the way of a 13 TD 19 INT line during his 3 years in DC — all of this after holding out for two weeks before his first training camp. The part that makes this even worse is that in the 7th round of that very same draft, the Skins went on to select Gus Frerotte with the 197th pick. Frerotte then went on to start 46 games for the Redskins from 1994-1998. Shuler is the biggest bust hands down in the history of the Redskins, and was a big part of the teams set back in the 1990s.
The Redskins are primed to select Robert Griffin III, QB from Baylor, with the 2nd overall pick in this 2012 Draft. Hopefully looking back on this pick after a few years, we won’t have to worry about RG3 even being mentioned in a similar type of list.