The 2018 NFL draft begins April 26, and it’s a given that there will be a handful of out-and-out first-round busts. And chances are, some of those busts will be former SEC stars.
The 14 SEC schools certainly have had their share of first-rounders who never panned out. Here’s a look at the worst first-round pick from each of the conference members during the Super Bowl era. (One of our “honorees” was drafted when his school wasn’t in the SEC.)
WR Dennis Homan
The particulars: Drafted 20th in 1968 by the Dallas Cowboys
The skinny: He played five NFL seasons and had just 37 total receptions. He did play well in 1975 in the World Football League, though.
LB Aundray Bruce
The particulars: Drafted 1st overall in 1988 by the Atlanta Falcons
The skinny: He was an excellent athlete who started for the Falcons in his first two seasons. But to say he lacked football instincts would be kind, and though he had an 11-season career, he was a reserve for the final nine seasons and finished with 32 sacks (12 of those came in his first two seasons). Bruce, who started just 41 games in his career, didn’t have 40 tackles in any of his final nine seasons. He was barely a journeyman – and he went first overall (three first-rounders from that draft are in the Pro Football Hall of Fame).
K Steve Little
The particulars: Drafted 15th in 1978 by the St. Louis Cardinals
The skinny: Little is one of just four kickers ever drafted in the first round. He kicked a 67-yard field goal at Arkansas in 1977, a distance that remains an NCAA record. But he was just 13-of-27 on field goals in three NFL seasons (including just 7-of-20 from 30 yards or more), and was so erratic as a rookie that he only punted that season. He was cut six games in the 1980 season, and he was involved in a car accident that left him a quadriplegic a few hours after he was cut.
OLB Huey Richardson
The particulars: Drafted 15th in 1991 by the Pittsburgh Steelers
The skinny: Richardson was a star on some high-level Florida defenses. But he did nothing in the NFL. His career stats: Two seasons, 16 games, zero tackles. He played five games as a rookie, then was traded after the season. Richardson eventually got an MBA and works on Wall Street.
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