Mel Kiper Jr. looked at 13 biggest quarterback draft busts since 1979.
Yes, there’s an AFC West presence in the piece.
Arguably, the AFC West has produced the two biggest drafts busts of all-time: Oakland’s JaMarcus Russell and San Diego’s Ryan Leaf. There has been a lot to be proud about in the AFC West over the years. These two disasters in cleats are not on that list.
Here is what Kiper had to say about each player:
Ryan Leaf, No. 2 overall to San Diego, 1998
You'll never find a better case of a guy who really needed to be held back and allowed to develop by the franchise that drafted him as a young man (he came out after his junior year). But Leaf was put in command of a terrible team and fell apart quickly when asked to lead the team and deal with the consequences of losing. Compared to some earlier names on the list, Leaf's weak career numbers don't even look as terrible, but the sound bites and the cameras and the money all added to the effect.
JaMarcus Russell, No. 1 overall to Oakland, 2007
Normally it should be impossible to use the word "bust" when talking about a guy drafted so recently. Guys such as Philip Rivers didn't even start games for a couple years. But Russell has been the epitome of a bust. We questioned his passion for the game during the draft process, and those questions seem to have been answered in the worst ways. He has a ton of natural talent, but nothing else has worked.
When Russell was cut last May, I wrote that I thought Russell was a bigger draft bust than Leaf or any other draft prospect. I have maintained that Russell is a bigger bust than Leaf because he was a No.1 overall pick and he was more expensive than Leaf.
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