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AFJF

What makes a draft pick a bust?

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On 5/26/2020 at 8:00 AM, AFJF said:

I've had this conversation over the years with a few different people and it seems the term "bust" is thrown around for a wide variety of players, including some who have varying degrees of success in the NFL.  Is a guy a bust because he fails to meet expectations?  If so, whose expectations?  What if he falls short of expecdtations but still has a long/solid NFL career?

Best example I can think of with this question is somebody like Bryan Thomas.  When he was drafted, he was expected to be a guy who put up big sack numbers.  Based on those expectations, he'd be a bust because that never happene.  But is it fair (or even sensible) to refer to a 10-year starter as a bust?  Shouldn't that be reserved for guys like Vernon Gholston?  

Just curious to see what people are looking at when they say a guy is a bust.

I'm sure the word has different definitions for everyone. The only way I can actually define them is to give you examples and, go figure, the Jets have a sh*t ton of them. However, I'll only point to the more recent ones:

Vernon Gholston

Vladimir Ducasse

Quinton Coples 

Dee Milliner

Stephen Hill

Calvin Pryor

Jace Amaro 

Devin Smith

Darron Lee

Christian Hackenberg

And honestly I'm just being generous here. Note that I only mentioned 1st and 2nd round draft choices. I would personally define any player in rounds 1-3 could be labeled as a bust. But in this case I'm purposely omitting those names. That list spans 3 General Managers and runs from 2008 through 2016. A nine year period? It makes a few things very evident:

1) The drafting is so bad, that it appears that those GM's were actually TRYING to pick the very worst players? Obviously, that wasn't the case but I doubt many teams could possibly be as futile as the Jets at drafting. The Jets during that period were the only sure bet to completely F*ck up their draft.

2) The HC during this period is a NON-FACTOR. Regardless of your feelings about Rex and Toilet, NO HC could possibly succeed in those conditions. I submit that ANY HC must have talent to win. At least SOME talent and the Jets had ZERO coming in from the draft. So firing the HC should never have happened until the true root of the Jets problems, the General Manager, was fixed.

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14 hours ago, rangerous said:

that third round pick mangini made from ohio state.  i forget his name but he played linebacker.  i think it was schlagel.

The hog hunter. He uses dogs to hunt hogs and stabs them while the dogs hold it down. He sucked

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9 hours ago, y2k8 said:

I believe hindsight plays a role. To me, Vernon Gholston is less of a bust than say Kyle Brady because of the players that could/should have been selected.

Kyle Brady went on to have an ok NFL career with the Jets and Jags. His career was much more productive to Vernon Gholston's career. But the Jets should have picked Warren Sapp, a guy who went to the HoF.  Drafting Brady was a colossal mistake.

By comparison, Vernon Gholston's draft class was largely meh and realistically anyone the Jets picked at #6 would have been considered a major disappointment. 

Vernon Gholston was one of the worst draft picks in recent memory. Of any NFL team. 
 

Kyle Brady was a disappointing pick but hardly a bad player. He was decent even though he didn’t live up to expectations. 
 

I don’t understand this line of reasoning that Brady was worse. No way Jose. 

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I don't see how you can blame the player for his being drafted too early.  I remove the draft position from the bust equation because position is on the GM and not the player. 

If Gholston wasn't picked so early he most likely would never have seen the field.  Players that don't belong on the field are the only ones I call bust.  So to name a few, Gholston, Hackenberg, Polite.

Guys like Couples, Lee, Maulden are totally different.  Good enough to see the field but are more of a detriment than an asset.          

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5 hours ago, LIJetsFan said:

I don't see how you can blame the player for his being drafted too early.  I remove the draft position from the bust equation because position is on the GM and not the player. 

If Gholston wasn't picked so early he most likely would never have seen the field.  Players that don't belong on the field are the only ones I call bust.  So to name a few, Gholston, Hackenberg, Polite.

Guys like Couples, Lee, Maulden are totally different.  Good enough to see the field but are more of a detriment than an asset.          

I guess I don't understand your point? You say you can't blame the player for being drafted too early, but a bust is a bust just the same. Bottom line is the team has all their hopes and dreams for a good draft in player X. If player X doesn't perform well, then the team is still screwed. I agree you can't blame the player for where they are drafted. But that comes out in the wash. If player X takes a little longer to develop? WEll, maybe they were taken too early, but the fact still remains that player X eventually came into his own. A bust is a player who never performs and at best eventually becomes another teams bench player. You count on rounds 1-3 becoming STARTING players.

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6 hours ago, Prez33 said:

Vernon Gholston was one of the worst draft picks in recent memory. Of any NFL team. 
 

Kyle Brady was a disappointing pick but hardly a bad player. He was decent even though he didn’t live up to expectations. 
 

I don’t understand this line of reasoning that Brady was worse. No way Jose. 

I don't understand what you don't understand.  Picking Sapp over Brady isn't even second guessing.  The world and every Jets fan paying attention thought and expected the jets to take Warren Sapp but they took a tight end.  Sapp is in the Hall of Fame.  Brady was an atrocious pick at the time and in hindsight.  t was a franchise altering decision. Gholston is a jag, but so is every one else the Jets likely would have picked there.  It's not like the Jets passed on Lawrence Taylor to pick Vernon Gholston.

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13 hours ago, Sperm Edwards said:

I sympathize with the feeling, but that's a bit too far. By your measurement, Jamal Adams is one of the 2 biggest busts the Jets ever drafted, if not the biggest.

Being a dumb/regrettable pick in hindsight doesn't make the player a bust. Kyle Brady wasn't a bust, but given the other options he was a dumb/regrettable pick to make there. Adams was one of the worst Jets draft picks ever, considering the QB-needy Jets passed on two star QBs (one of whom is on pace to be the best QB in history) but that doesn't make Adams a bust.

I hear what you’re saying, that there was no Mahomes (let alone Mahomes and Watson) available when we took Gholston. But Gholston was not a bigger bust than Adams, even if the wrong hindsight move of drafting Gholston hurt less than the wrong hindsight move of drafting Adams. 

The Jets were never going to take a QB in the first round because Mr Coffee had his Qb of the future on the roster. Passing on Mahaomes and Watson doesn't sting as much.  Not like Kenny O'Brien being picked instead of Dan Marino.  Kenny O over Marino cost us Super Bowls.

Perhaps a pick can be a bigger blunder than a quote unquote "bust".  But when I think of the greatest Jets draft mistakes or blunders that truly damaged the franchise, a guy like Gholston doesnt bother me like Kyle Brady instead of Warren Sapp or Kenny O instead of Dan Marino.  

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3 hours ago, y2k8 said:

I don't understand what you don't understand.  Picking Sapp over Brady isn't even second guessing.  The world and every Jets fan paying attention thought and expected the jets to take Warren Sapp but they took a tight end.  Sapp is in the Hall of Fame.  Brady was an atrocious pick at the time and in hindsight.  t was a franchise altering decision. Gholston is a jag, but so is every one else the Jets likely would have picked there.  It's not like the Jets passed on Lawrence Taylor to pick Vernon Gholston.

Kyle Brady played 13 years in the NFL, including  8 years with Jax. He caught over 3,500 yards and 25 career TD’s. That’s a decent career. 
 

Vernon Gholston was drafted to be a pass rusher, difference maker for the NYJ. He finished a five year stint with three different teams racking up 42 tackles, 0 sacks, and 0 forced fumbles. That’s a disgrace. 

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5 minutes ago, Prez33 said:

Kyle Brady played 13 years in the NFL, including  8 years with Jax. He caught over 3,500 yards and 25 career TD’s. That’s a decent career. 
 

Vernon Gholston was drafted to be a pass rusher, difference maker for the NYJ. He finished a five year stint with three different teams racking up 42 tackles, 0 sacks, and 0 forced fumbles. That’s a disgrace. 

I get it, but your comparison completely ignores the monumental opportunity cost the selection of Brady over Sapp inflicted on the franchise.  The opportunity cost of Gholston over any one else they would have selected is negligible.

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8 minutes ago, Prez33 said:

Kyle Brady played 13 years in the NFL, including  8 years with Jax. He caught over 3,500 yards and 25 career TD’s. That’s a decent career. 
 

Vernon Gholston was drafted to be a pass rusher, difference maker for the NYJ. He finished a five year stint with three different teams racking up 42 tackles, 0 sacks, and 0 forced fumbles. That’s a disgrace. 

I woudl agree wtih this.  To call a player a bust, to me, it is on the player.  It is not Brady's fault that the Jets could have had Sapp instead.  Brady put together a nice career, maybe not as much production as you would want from a top 10 pick, but still a solid NFL player for over a decade.  That is not a bust.

Guys like Gholston, Blair Thomas, Lam Jones, Hack, Reggie Rembert, Stephen Hill, etc are all players taken high in the draft who flamed out pretty quickly without putting together solid careers.  Those guys are busts. 

To me, there is a difference between a bust and a solid player who is overdrafted.

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6 minutes ago, y2k8 said:

I get it, but your comparison completely ignores the monumental opportunity cost the selection of Brady over Sapp inflicted on the franchise.  The opportunity cost of Gholston over any one else they would have selected is negligible.

I agree that passing on Sapp was a huge mistake. No disagreement there. The Jets were scared of a pot bust or something minor like that, and went the “safe” route.  A dumb move. Agreed. 
 

But a “bust” for me is someone who vastly underperforms their college performance and draft position. Gholston was drafted to be the next Gastineau, LT, Reggie White. He wasn’t a pimple on the ass of any of them. In my mind, he was in the same class as Ryan Leaf and Tony Mandarich.
 

Tannenbaum struck out with the bases loaded in a 1 run game in the bottom of the 9th of game 7 of the WS with that draft pick. 

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There is a difference between a disappointment and a bust.

A guy like Quinton Coples was a disappointment but he had 16.5 career sacks, Gholston was a bust.

Ducasse is for sure not a bust, he has been in the league for like a decade.

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1 minute ago, Prez33 said:

I agree that passing on Sapp was a huge mistake. No disagreement there. The Jets were scared of a pot bust or something minor like that, and went the “safe” route.  A dumb move. Agreed. 
 

But a “bust” for me is someone who vastly underperforms their college performance and draft position. Gholston was drafted to be the next Gastineau, LT, Reggie White. He wasn’t a pimple on the ass of any of them. In my mind, he was in the same class as Ryan Leaf and Tony Mandarich.
 

Tannenbaum struck out with the bases loaded in a 1 run game in the bottom of the 9th of game 7 of the WS with that draft pick. 

I just remember at the time a common refrain on boards like this was "the Jets have the 6th pick in a 5 person draft".  We were hopeful that Gholston would be good, but I don't recall super high expectations.  And the reality was, it wasn't even a 5 person draft.  The top of the draft class was largely horrible.  So if Glenn Dorsey fell to us, would it really matter?  Or if we picked Sedrick Ellis, Derrick Harvey or Keith Rivers instead, would history have been rewritten?  I doubt it. Jarrod Mayo at #10 would have been the best we could have hoped for.  

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25 minutes ago, y2k8 said:

I just remember at the time a common refrain on boards like this was "the Jets have the 6th pick in a 5 person draft".  We were hopeful that Gholston would be good, but I don't recall super high expectations.  And the reality was, it wasn't even a 5 person draft.  The top of the draft class was largely horrible.  So if Glenn Dorsey fell to us, would it really matter?  Or if we picked Sedrick Ellis, Derrick Harvey or Keith Rivers instead, would history have been rewritten?  I doubt it. Jarrod Mayo at #10 would have been the best we could have hoped for.  

5 pro bowlers were taken in the next 10 picks after Gholston. Clady, DRC, Albert, Stewart and Mayo. But we fell in love with Gholston’s 14 sacks in 2007, and his bench press at the combine. Rather than trying to trade down and recognize that the value wasn’t there, we swung for the fences with Gholston and ended up with egg on our faces. 
 

 

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11 minutes ago, Prez33 said:

5 pro bowlers were taken in the next 10 picks after Gholston. Clady, DRC, Albert, Stewart and Mayo. But we fell in love with Gholston’s 14 sacks in 2007, and his bench press at the combine. Rather than trying to trade down and recognize that the value wasn’t there, we swung for the fences with Gholston and ended up with egg on our faces. 
 

 

Understood but not one of those pro bowlers were *viewed* at worthy of the #6 overall pick by any of the teams, including the ones that selected them.  The Jets have sucked at the draft but the Gholston draft I think they were doomed either way.  It was a bad year to have the #6 pick.

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17 hours ago, OCCH23 said:

I appreciate the time you put into the response, but respectfully agree to disagree.

Gholston did NOTHING and cost us more draft capital than pretty much anyone up there.  I suppose you could argue Robertson (since we actually traded up to get him) but he at least lasted 5 years and was playing with an arthritic condition.  Hack was by far the "worst" but cost us a late second as opposed to an early first.

Like you said, it depends on the definition of "bust" -- I see Gholston's picture next to the word in the dictionary.  Some of the posts above me talk about who could have been picked instead, and to me that has NOTHING to do with the "bust" label.

I just pray I live long enough to have a debate about the BEST Jet draft pick one day, instead of always being stuck with the WORST . . . 

 

Again.  I think Gholston was the biggest BUST, but not the worst PICK.  There's a distinction there.  There was logic behind the pick.  Gholston just failed.  I blame the player far more than I do Tannenbaum/Mangini. 

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2 hours ago, Beerfish said:

There is a difference between a disappointment and a bust.

A guy like Quinton Coples was a disappointment but he had 16.5 career sacks, Gholston was a bust.

Ducasse is for sure not a bust, he has been in the league for like a decade.

And that adds another layer to the discussion IMO.  How do you classify somebody like James Farrior, who was a first round pick for the Jets but did nothing for them?  He was great as a Steeler, but is he a bust as far as the Jets are concerned?  Do we call that a wasted pick instead?  Nothing wrong with the player, but if I'm an owner I'm not going to be thrilled when my GM says, "look at my track record, I drafted a bunch of dudes who played great once they left us".  I'm firing that GM and trying to find one who uses picks on players who play well for my team.

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9 minutes ago, AFJF said:

And that adds another layer to the discussion IMO.  How do you classify somebody like James Farrior, who was a first round pick for the Jets but did nothing for them?  He was great as a Steeler, but is he a bust as far as the Jets are concerned?  Do we call that a wasted pick instead?  Nothing wrong with the player, but if I'm an owner I'm not going to be thrilled when my GM says, "look at my track record, I drafted a bunch of dudes who played great once they left us".  I'm firing that GM and trying to find one who uses picks on players who play well for my team.

When I hear the term bust - I usually think it is on the player.  It is not necessarily a draft mistake, you picked the guy where he was supposed to go and the guy did not produce.  To me that is Gholston, Stephen Hill, etc.

Farrior may not have fit the Jets system, maybe he needed more time to devleop than we gave him.  Still a mistake since we took him and didn't getmuch out of him.  But as a player, James Farrior was not a bust.  That does not mean the Jets did not make a mistake in taking him (especially after trading back 2x and seeing two HOFers go in the spots we traded out of --Orlando Pace and Walter Jones).  Definitely a mistake.  But not a bust.

Then there are those memorable moments where mistake and bust converge.  Like when you take Christian Hackenberg in R2.  Clearly he was overdrafted, but the player did not produce.  

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"What makes a draft pick a bust?"

If you were drafted by Mike Mccagnan, your chance of being a bust was at around 95%

 

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7 hours ago, y2k8 said:

The Jets were never going to take a QB in the first round because Mr Coffee had his Qb of the future on the roster. Passing on Mahaomes and Watson doesn't sting as much.  Not like Kenny O'Brien being picked instead of Dan Marino.  Kenny O over Marino cost us Super Bowls.

Perhaps a pick can be a bigger blunder than a quote unquote "bust".  But when I think of the greatest Jets draft mistakes or blunders that truly damaged the franchise, a guy like Gholston doesnt bother me like Kyle Brady instead of Warren Sapp or Kenny O instead of Dan Marino.  

nah one of the rumors - for what they're worth - was that he would have considered only one QB in that draft: Trubisky. As in, if Trubisky slid to #6 (or maybe if he'd slid to #5) then Mac may have pounced on the opportunity.

The Jets already knew Hackenberg was not the man. Whatever they hoped he might become someday, it's one thing to make a bad pick and yet another to compound the mistake by doubling-down on it. He didn't show 1/10 the promise that freaking Smith showed. 4th string. 4th, sitting behind a journeyman and two busts, for all the extra brownie-points he'd have gotten just for not being Petty or Smith. 

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9 minutes ago, Sperm Edwards said:

nah one of the rumors - for what they're worth - was that he would have considered only one QB in that draft: Trubisky. As in, if Trubisky slid to #6 (or maybe if he'd slid to #5) then Mac may have pounced on the opportunity.

The Jets already knew Hackenberg was not the man. Whatever they hoped he might become someday, it's one thing to make a bad pick and yet another to compound the mistake by doubling-down on it. He didn't show 1/10 the promise that freaking Smith showed. 4th string. 4th, sitting behind a journeyman and two busts, for all the extra brownie-points he'd have gotten just for not being Petty or Smith. 

Why am I not surprised that Mr Coffee was a Trubisky fan?   So perfect.

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