There have been plenty of bad draft picks over the years but who are the 30 biggest NFL Draft busts of all time?
The NFL Draft is often a time of hope for all fans since a potential franchise-changing superstar can be available with the mere turning in of a card. There is also a chance that said draft pick could flame out and set back an organization for years.
There have been many busts in the history of the NFL but this list breaks down 30 of the worst flameouts we’ve seen. Since higher picks tend to have loftier expectations this list is comprised almost entirely of players picked inside the top ten with one notable exception, where we will start.
30. Biggest NFL Draft busts of all-time – New York Jets QB Christian Hackenberg
It takes an awful lot to make the list of biggest busts of all time as a second-round pick but Christian Hackenberg was downright dreadful for the Jets. Taken as the Jets’ potential quarterback of the future in 2016 by then-GM Mike Maccagnan, Hackenberg was a complete disaster and easily cemented himself as the team’s worst draft pick in the last decade.
Many scouts felt the Hackenberg pick was a reach and he never earned the trust of the Jets’ coaching staff, failing to get on the field even in a lost 2017 season where New York had to finish the year with Bryce Petty under center. Hackenberg was later dealt to the Oakland Raiders for a conditional draft pick but that trade was negated when he got cut prior to the start of the season.
Two other teams took a flier on Hackenberg but he never played an NFL snap, making him the first quarterback picked in the first two rounds of the draft to fail to play in a regular-season game since the AFL-NFL merger in 1967. That ignominious stat alone earned Hackenberg a spot on the list.