2008: Jamarcus Russell, Oakland Raiders
It could easily be argued that Jamarcus Russell was the biggest draft bust in the history of the NFL. After being taken with the #1 overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, he never even came anywhere near the same galaxy of living up to the immense potential that scouts and observers had seen in him. He started off his career on the wrong foot from the get go, missing all of training camp in his rookie year, in a contract hold out. In his first season as a full-time starter, Russell provided a glimpse of things to come.
He won five of the 15 games he started, threw for an NFL-low 161.5 yards per game, and finished with a laughable 31.8 quarterback rating, which was also the worst in the league. After his disastrous 2008 season, Russell only played in another 9 NFL games, and was out of the league by the age of 24. Not exactly what you’re hoping for when you draft a guy with the #1 pick and pay him $39 million.