The 10 Biggest Busts in Fantasy Football History

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Serenity Now!


Without a doubt, Fantasy Football is one of the most frustrating and agonizing things you put yourself through every year. You research for weeks, draft what you think is a good team, and look forward to Week 1 more so for your fantasy squad than your real team. But just a half into the season, you want to break your computer while watching Red Zone or FantasyCast.

As Bill Paxton said in the great American classic Twister: you can’t explain it, you can’t predict it! That is how I feel every Sunday during Fantasy Football season. This year, I especially feel that way since I am one of those idiots who drafted Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson in the first round. Johnson is easily on track to become one of the biggest fantasy busts of all-time, but who are the biggest busts the fantasy world has ever seen?

It took a while to research this, but I compiled a list of what I believe to be the ten biggest busts in Fantasy Football history. I didn’t account for a injured season; therefore, you will not see Tom Brady on this list. I also didn’t account for Jamal Lewis due to my own idiocy, so he will get his due respect here. Alas, here are the ten biggest Fantasy Football busts of all-time.

Bryan is a featured writer for Rant Sports. Although he concentrates on MLB, you can see him covering a multitude of things across Rant Sports. Follow Bryan on Twitter

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10. Rickey Dudley (2000)

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Before there was there was Jermichael Finley, there was Rickey Dudley. He was big, athletic tight end who could catch the ball well. There was no Rob Gronkowski back in the day, 600+ yards and five touchdowns was about as good as you were going to get out of the tight end position, making Dudley one of the most valuable guys in fantasy. Coming off a year where he had 555 yards and nine scores, Dudley was the top tight end available in 2000, but only racked up 350 yards and four touchdowns in his final season in Oakland.
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9. Tiki Barber (2003)

Atiim Kiambu Hakeem-Ah Barber was a late bloomer in his career with the Giants. In his sixth season (2002), Barber rushed for 1,387 yards and 11 touchdowns, while racking up 597 receiving yards as well. Barber’s dual-threat potential excited most draftees, but they forgot that Barber wasn’t really a red zone back. Barber did rush for 1,216 yards in 2003, but scored three times all season.
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8. Jeff Blake (1997)

Bengals Inquirer
I’m sure we all remember Bengals QB Jeff Blake. Well, he was actually a really good fantasy quarterback way back in 1996. Outside of Brett Favre, there really wasn’t a definite number two fantasy quarterback coming into 1997. Owners expected Blake to replicate his ’96 campaign where he threw for 3,624 yards, 26 total touchdowns , and 14 interceptions. Instead, they got the Jeff Blake we all remember: the loser QB of the Bungals. Blake only had 8 TDs to go along with 7 INTs in 1997.
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7. Braylon Edwards (2008)

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Braylon Edwards, alongside Derek Anderson, led the Browns to one of their few winning records in 2007. Edwards caught 16 touchdowns and racked up 1,289 receiving yards, which made him a high target during most 2008 drafts. But all Edwards did was be on the list of busts, scoring only three times with 873 receiving yards.
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6. Emmitt Smith (1997)

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During his prime, there wasn’t a more sure thing than Emmitt Smith racking up yards and touchdowns for the Dallas Cowboys. In 1997, however, Smith battled injuries all season, only picking up 1,074 yards and 4 TDs all season. The four touchdowns are the second lowest total Emmitt had during his Cowboys’ career.
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5. Terrell Owens (1999)

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Although Owens was still relatively unknown in 1999, he was coming off a season where he racked up 1,097 yards and 14 scores. So one could expect Owens to breakout that season - - right? Wrong. Owens only had 754 yards and four scores in ’99, his lowest yards total outside of his rookie season.
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4. Rudi Johnson (2007)

Rudi Johnson Foundation
Rudi Johnson might have not been a household name, but he had a three-year stretch that any running back would dream of. From 2004-06, Johnson averaged 1,407 yards and 12 touchdowns, certainly impressive numbers for any back. Apparently, that three-year stretch took a huge toll on Johnson’s body, because in 2007 he only played in 11 games, rushing for only 497 yards and three scores.
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3. Marc Bulger (2007)

Nick Wass - AP
Marc Bulger was a fun fantasy quarterback to have in the late 2000s. You knew the Rams weren’t going to mess around with running the ball; ergo, you could expect a 4,000 yard, 20 touchdown season from the Rams’ QB. Coming off a great season in 2006 where he threw for 4,301 yards and had a 3:1 TD/INT ratio, Bulger was a high pick in a lot of fantasy leagues; however, Bulger was one of the bigger busts in 2007. He finished the season throwing for 2,392 yards, 11 touchdowns, and 15 interceptions.
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2. Eddie George (2001)

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Eddie George was as much as a horse as a running back could be. In his brief eight-year career with the Tennessee Titans, George averaged 342 carries a season; hence, you can understand why he retired after only eight seasons. George was coming off a season where he had 1,509 yards – albeit on 403 carries – and 14 touchdowns in 2000. However, George’s body never bounced back well enough from the pounding he took, rushing for only 939 yards and five touchdowns in 2001.
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1. Shaun Alexander (2006)

While a lot of these guys were busts, they weren’t necessarily picked in the first round - - that’s where Shaun Alexander comes into play. Alexander wasn’t only a first round pick in 2006, but he was a legitimate candidate for the number one overall pick. He was coming off his record breaking season in 2005, where he totaled 1,958 yards from scrimmage and scored 28 times; therefore, you can understand why owners would have taken him number one overall. But Alexander was a huge bust, having less than 1,000 from scrimmage and only seven scores.