Every year and throughout all sports, young players will get their chance to leave a mark on the franchise that drafts them. Some players will live up to there potential, some players will exceed their expectations. And then there’s the players that never live up to the hype. Let’s talk about some of my favorite busts from each sport
NFL – Vince Young
If you’re an NFL fan there’s a 99% chance you know who Vince Young is. One of the best CFB players of all time who also played in one of the greatest CFB games ever played, the BCS National Championship where Young’s Texas Longhorns upset the USC Trojans. But Young never really showed his full potential in the NFL.
His NFL career didn’t start too bad. In his rookie season in 2006, he nearly led the Tennessee Titans to the playoffs and he showed signs that he would be a very good quarterback. He would make the Pro-Bowl that year plus he’d also make another Pro-Bowl in 2009. But after that, it all seemed to go downhill. In the 2010 season, Young would be released from the Titans after an altercation with head coach Jeff Fisher.
Vince Young would sign with the Philadelphia Eagles for the 2011 season but was then benched midway through for not meeting expectations. He then bounced around teams such as the Buffalo Bills, Green Bay Packers, and Cleveland Browns before finding himself playing in the CFL. After watching him play in college, nobody would ever imagine that Vince Young’s NFL career would only amount to a mere 5 seasons.
NBA – Adam Morrison
A three-year player at Gonzaga, winning many awards and being named All-American in 2006, Adam Morrison was drafted to the Charlotte Bobcats 3rd overall in 2006. This athlete defines the term “bust” without a doubt. Midway through his rookie season, coaches already started to realize that he wasn’t going to be great in the NBA. That same season, a torn ACL would keep him sidelined for the next year and a half. When the knee healed up, he was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers. While here he did win 2 rings, he did not see merely enough playing time. Morrison played 2 more years in Europe and would bounce around some summer league teams before going unsigned in 2012 ending his basketball career.
MLB – Brien Taylor
Brien Taylor is a player that most casual MLB fans wouldn’t even know about. A Yankees pitching prospect in the early 90s that could’ve turned New York’s “Core Four” into the “Fantastic Five”. As a southpaw, he dominated high schools for 4 years and seemed to be exactly what the Yankees needed at the time. In his first year in the minors, he was sent straight to High-A and had a 2.57 ERA which was very impressive.
The next year he was sent to the Double-A Albany-Colonie Yankees (right here in the capital region) and impressed even more there with a 13-7 record. He was a rising star. But this is where his career turns. That winter he went back home to North Carolina, and on a December night, he was involved in a bar fight defending his brother. He ended up tearing his capsule and glenoid labrum. The doctor performed surgery and said it was “the worst he had ever seen”. And to make it worse he was charged with misdemeanor assault.
He would play a couple more years in the minors but would never be the same after the injury. He would then join the Seattle Mariners for a quick stint in 1998, then the Cleveland Indians in 2000. His career was over. After baseball, Brien Taylor has had a long list of legal issues including child abuse and cocaine trafficking. He was released from jail in 2015.
NHL – Rick DiPietro
I didn’t think I was going to include hockey in this but when you’re a goalie and you’re drafted first overall, you’re expected to be one of the greats. Since the year 2000 there has only been 1 other goalie drafted first overall, Marc-Andre Fleury, one of the greatest goalies of this era and most likely a hall of famer. Rick DiPietro did play a 13 year career all with the New York Islanders, but never really seemed to stay healthy. He would never live up to the hype of being a first overall pick. I guess his goal was living up to his hype