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Odd of Drafting a Bust with a Top Ten Pick?


Jack Straw
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I took a look at the history of top ten draft picks selected between the years of 1994-2007; To determine who represents the lowest risk in the upcoming NFL Draft, I have explored how blue chip players drafted at certain positions have a higher rate of success than other positions. The research is too large for the site to allow me to publish it -- can a moderator do it if I e-mail it to them?

Each position is broken down into three categories:

1) Players who reached the Pro Bowl

2) Players who became consistent starters

3) Players who busted

If a general manager is torn 50/50 between two players of equal talent at equal positions of need, it makes a great deal of sense to draft the one whose position represents the lower risk -- hence the rationale behind the research.

Odds of Drafting a Consistent Starter By Position

OT: 100% --> 0% bust rate

DT: 85% --> 15% bust rate

WR: 65% --> 35% bust rate

DE: 73% --> 27% bust rate

CB:75% --> 25% bust rate

RB: 65% --> 35% bust rate

QB: 63% --> 37% bust rate

***No offensive lineman from 1994-2007 has busted..

Odds of Drafting a Pro-Bowler by Position

RB: 57%

OL: 54%

DT: 53%

QB: 50%

WR: 30%

CB: 45 %

DE: 27%

Edited by WestchesterJet
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Go tell a Bills fan that no top-10 OL draftees have busted.

Agreed. Just because a guy was a "consistent starter" (for only 3 seasons) doesn't change the fact that the return on investment was horrible for where he was selected and what he got paid.

Edited by JohnnyHector
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Agreed. Just because a guy was a "consistent starter" doesn't change the fact that the return on investment was horrible for where he was selected and what he got paid.

There's a big difference between being a bust and a consistent starter in this league. Using your logic Trent Dilfer and Kerry Collins would be considered busts because they never lived up to the slot they were drafted in.

Both players were starters for a long-time and had decent careers; neither can be considered a bust. Same goes with Williams. If Williams is a backup for the next five years, he'll move into the bust category. But as of right now he's started 56/59 games in his career, and has an opportunity to have a decent career after a terrible start.

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There's a big difference between being a bust and a consistent starter in this league. Using your logic Trent Dilfer and Kerry Collins would be considered busts because they never lived up to the slot they were drafted in.

Both players were starters for a long-time and had decent careers; neither can be considered a bust. Same goes with Williams. If Williams is a backup for the next five years, he'll move into the bust category. But as of right now he's started 56/59 games in his career, and has an opportunity to have a decent career after a terrible start.

+1

The idea that top picks absolutely have to come in and make immediate, franchise type impact is a stupid, unrealistic one anyway.

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There's a big difference between being a bust and a consistent starter in this league. Using your logic Trent Dilfer and Kerry Collins would be considered busts because they never lived up to the slot they were drafted in.

Both players were starters for a long-time and had decent careers; neither can be considered a bust. Same goes with Williams. If Williams is a backup for the next five years, he'll move into the bust category. But as of right now he's started 56/59 games in his career, and has an opportunity to have a decent career after a terrible start.

I disagree. Bust/not bust must be defined solely based on what the player contributes to the team that drafted him during his rookie contract not his overall career.

For example let say Gholston gets cut, signed by another team and then goes on to have a hall of fame career...he would still be a draft bust as far as the Jets are concerned cause they got nothing for their millions of dollars and top 10 pick.

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I disagree. Bust/not bust must be defined solely based on what the player contributes to the team that drafted him during his rookie contract not his overall career.
That just seems dumb. Why?

If we were to cut Gholston and watch him become a HOF for another team then the Jets would be the busts. Why would you cut a guy you've barely played just because your fans think any first round pick who isn't a HOF from Day 1 should be labeled a bust?

Entirely too much significance is put on money and draft status....way too much.

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That just seems dumb. Why?

If we were to cut Gholston and watch him become a HOF for another team then the Jets would be the busts. Why would you cut a guy you've barely played just because your fans think any first round pick who isn't a HOF from Day 1 should be labeled a bust?

Entirely too much significance is put on money and draft status....way too much.

The purpose of the draft is to improve your football team. That is also the purpose of trades and FA signings. If use a high draft pick and a ton of cap space on a player that doesn't improve the team then he is a bust.

The same player can both be a bust and a solid contributor. As far as the Vikings and NE are concerned Randy Moss is/was a valuable contributor. As far as the Raiders are concerned he is a bust.

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The purpose of the draft is to improve your football team. That is also the purpose of trades and FA signings. If use a high draft pick and a ton of cap space on a player that doesn't improve the team then he is a bust.

The same player can both be a bust and a solid contributor. As far as the Vikings and NE are concerned Randy Moss is/was a valuable contributor. As far as the Raiders are concerned he is a bust.

Makes sense, but all in all it goes to show how stupid the idea of "bust" really is. That word is thrown around like the 15 cent whore it is, and it has no meaning beyond "that guy didn't work out for us" in this league.

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Thomas Jones was the 4th pick in the draft -- is he a bust because he sucked his first 3 or 4 years in this league?

For the Cardinals? He absolutely was. Overall in the league? No. But when you are talking about draft value, its the value that the drafting team gets in return that matters. No NFL team is willing to wait 6 years to finally get a return on their investment of a top 10 pick. A player doesn't have to get forced out of the league in order to be a complete waste of a pick for a given team.

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Makes sense, but all in all it goes to show how stupid the idea of "bust" really is. That word is thrown around like the 15 cent whore it is, and it has no meaning beyond "that guy didn't work out for us" in this league.

Actually that is a perfect definition for bust.

If Kareem Brown goes on to have a HOF career it won't change the fact he was a bust for NE. Not as big of bust as Gholston is for the Jets cause NE used a late 4th round pick on him and didn't spend millions of dollars.

If Matt Cassel never wins another game or goes on to have a HOF career he was a great use of a 7th round pick for NE. Won 11 games and NE got a 2nd round pick, for very little cap space. No matter what he does in KC doesn't change that although it will effect the analysis of who got the better end of the trade deal.

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The purpose of the draft is to improve your football team. That is also the purpose of trades and FA signings. If use a high draft pick and a ton of cap space on a player that doesn't improve the team then he is a bust.

The same player can both be a bust and a solid contributor. As far as the Vikings and NE are concerned Randy Moss is/was a valuable contributor. As far as the Raiders are concerned he is a bust.

Well put.

This isn't like the 1980's. There is a salary cap (or was one anyway). You can't draft a guy that high, pay him a mega-deal, and hang onto him patiently for 6 years hoping someday he just wakes up and gets it. It's a waste of cap space and a terror for team morale to practice with a lazy sack of garbage who makes 2 or 10 times what lots of good players do.

If he was taken later, even maybe late in the same round, maybe Buffalo hangs onto him. Maybe he doesn't eat himself stupid because he hasn't had his mega-payday with $15M+ guaranteed or up-front yet. Maybe lots of things, but for the Buffalo Bills he was a busted draft pick. The guy was out of football without injury for three full seasons and only saw the field due to others' injuries, and only lightly penciled in to start in 2010.

Not to dump on WJ's analysis, as I'm sure it took him quite a while to compile. But "bust" differs in opinion from one person to the next. Some see the term like a light switch being on or off. I'm more in the camp that sees people as total busts, moderate busts, and relative busts because of how much they get paid and how much trade value they have.

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There's a big difference between being a bust and a consistent starter in this league. Using your logic Trent Dilfer and Kerry Collins would be considered busts because they never lived up to the slot they were drafted in.

Both players were starters for a long-time and had decent careers; neither can be considered a bust. Same goes with Williams. If Williams is a backup for the next five years, he'll move into the bust category. But as of right now he's started 56/59 games in his career, and has an opportunity to have a decent career after a terrible start.

The fact that he started 47 of 51 games for Buffalo might mean something if he was drafted in 2005 instead of 2002. Where was he for the subsequent 48 regular season games played in the NFL?

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where is LB in this study??

Linebackers rarely get drafted in the top 10 (less than one per year, on average) so I didn't think it was worth compiling the lack of data. Generally speaking, linebackers are pretty safe picks (Lavar Arrington, Brian Urlacher, Peter Boulware, James Farrior, Kevin Hardy, etc) with the minimal downside (AJ Hawk, Chris Claiborne, etc).

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The fact that he started 47 of 51 games for Buffalo might mean something if he was drafted in 2005 instead of 2002. Where was he for the subsequent 48 regular season games played in the NFL?

Probably on a buffet line somewhere. But his career isn't over yet. He's still starting in this league, and if he goes to the pro-bowl for the next three years, I'd have a hard time calling him a bust, right?

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Because it gives him room to keep parroting the laughably labored contrivance that Gholston is already a bust no matter what he does from now on. That's pretty much it.

This topic is discussed in detail in the first half of my forthcoming ebook You Can't Triple Stamp a Double Stamp: My Life Arguing with Retards on the Internet. The second half is comprised mostly of an exhaustive albeit fairly dry calculation demonstrating conclusively that there aren't enough hours in RJF's actuarial lifespan to actually sit down and listen to all of the records he claims to like.

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