Top Five Worst First Round Draft Busts in Bucs History

NFL NEWS: Tampa Bay Bucs

We talked about the best first round picks the Bucs made, now let’s talk about their worst.

The criteria I’m going by is their draft standing and their productivity within the team.

Reidel Anthony

Anthony was selected 16th overall in the 1997 draft. While others on this list are top 10 selections, Anthony is the exception on this list because he never achieved any form of success that a first rounder should have as a receiver.

In his five years with the team, Anthony never topped 1,000 yards receiving or 10 touchdowns. In fact, he only topped 500 yards receiving once in his career and that was his second year with the team in 1998 when he caught 51 receptions for 708 yards and seven touchdowns.

Anthony may be the first receiver the Bucs chosen in the first round in franchise history, but at least both Michael Clayton and Mike Evans achieved a 1,000 yard season.

Anthony played his final season with the Bucs in 2001, which also turned out to be his final year in the league. He finished with 1,846 career receiving yards and 16 touchdowns.

Keith McCants

McCants was selected fourth overall in the 1990 draft. His standing on this list wasn’t so much his lack of production, but rather his short tenure with the team.

McCants produced 12 sacks and 156 tackles in three seasons with the team. He was tied for third with defensive tackle Tim Newton in the team in 1991 with five sacks. He was tied for second the following year with tackle Mark Wheeler, defensive end Ray Seals and linebacker Broderick Thomas with five sacks.

McCants was cut by the Bucs in 1993 and was picked up by the Houston Oilers and would finish his career with the Arizona Cardinals in 1995. He finished with a paltry 1.5 sacks and 28 tackles his last three years in the league.

Gaines Adams

Adams was the fourth overall pick in the 2007 draft. His career is similar in the vein of McCants, but with slightly more productive stats. He finished his rookie year with six sacks, which was tied for second with defensive tackle Jovan Haye. The following year Adams finished with 6.5 sacks to lead the team for the season.

Five games in the 2009 season, the Bucs traded him to the Chicago Bears for a second round pick. The pick wound up being traded several picks before the New England Patriots selected tight end Rob Gronkowski. Adams finished the season with only one sack, which was produced prior to his trade.

Tragically, Adams died in January 2010 from cardiac arrest. He finished his career with 13.5 sacks and 93 combined tackles.

Eric Curry

Curry was the sixth overall selection by the Bucs in 1993. Curry never matched his rookie season when he produced five sacks, which was tied for second on the team with defensive tackle Santana Dotson.

In five seasons with the team, Curry recorded a total of 12 sacks and 84 combined tackles as his production waned. He found himself in a backup role to another first rounder in Regan Upshaw.

Curry departed for the Jacksonville Jaguars in 1998 recording only half a sack and 11 combined tackles in his final year in the league in 1999.

Vinny Testaverde

Testaverde earns the special distinction since he was the Bucs’ first quarterback to be taken at first overall. As the top pick in the 1987 draft, Testaverde never had the luxury of having the kind of defensive help other Bucs franchise quarterbacks to not only make up for their own shortcomings, but also succeed during his six-year run with the team.

Doug Williams had players like Lee Roy Selmon and Richard “Batman” Wood. Trent Dilfer had Derrick Brooks, Warren Sapp and John Lynch.

In Testaverde’s six years with the team, he amassed a 24-48 record with 1,126 completions out of 2,160 passing attempts for a 52.1 completion percentage, 14,820 passing yards, 77 touchdowns and 112 interceptions. His passing attempts, passing yards and interceptions are all-time Bucs’ franchise records.

Despite the team’s futility, Testaverde only had one season where he had double digit losses which was in 1988. He topped 3,000 yards passing twice, but never topped 20 passing touchdowns in a single season.

The league was kinder to Testaverde since he left the Bucs in 1993 in a career that spanned 15 more seasons with six more franchises, two of which with winning records (New York Jets and Cleveland Browns). The two-time Pro Bowler currently holds the NFL record for most losses by a starting quarterback with 123.

Should the Bucs draft a quarterback this year, he’ll have at least the luxury of having talents like Gerald McCoy and Lavonte David to help lead the defense.

About Tom

Tom Chang is a freelance journalist with a background in multimedia journalism and web publishing. He is currently pursuing his Masters in Journalism and Media Studies from the University of South Florida St.Petersburg. He graduated in 2004 with a Bachelors Degree in Mass Communications at USF Tampa. Tom's interests include a little bit of everything from entertainment to sports. He also wishes to delve into creative writing writing sci-fi/fantasy stories. Tom was recently the Online Editor for USF St. Petersburg's the Crow's Nest, he joined the staff in January 2010 where he started freelance writing, photographing, copy editing and later became a staff writer. Tom’s freelance experience in journalism amassed a wide range of companies including Creative Loafing, The Focus Magazine, Lutz News,, and Tampa Tribune.
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