1st Round WR's 2000-2004: A Real Horror Story



In just a couple of weeks, the streets will be filled with witches, goblins, ghosts and other nightmarish creatures as they roam door to door demanding candy. But if you really want to scare your friends this Halloween, you should dress up as one myriad 1st round WR busts who entered the NFL between 2000 and 2004. Just hearing the name "Rashaun Woods" or "R.Jay Soward" is enough to send a chill up any general manager's spine. Drafting WR's is exceptionally difficult, but the early part of last decade produced some real nightmares.

When you draft any player in the 1st round, you are hoping for a cornerstone of your franchise. A player who will not only be a game-changing talent, but someone who can bring longevity and long-term stability to his position. Unfortunately, it rarely works that way. Consider these haunting facts:

Between 2000-2004 there were 24 WR's drafted in the 1st round. Of those, only Reggie Wayne (2001, Colts), Andre Johnson (2003, Texans) and Larry Fitzgerald (2004, Cardinals) are still with their original team. Less than half (11) are still active in the league.

The 24 WR's have cumulatively averaged just 3 catches and 42 yards per game over the course of their careers. Only 4 of the receivers (Fitzgerald, A.Johnson, Wayne and Santana Moss) have averaged 4+ catches per game. Only 7 have averaged 50+ receiving yards per game:

2000-04_wr_1_medium

But that's not all. Of the 24 1st round WR's in this time period, only a quarter of them (Wayne, Fitzgerald, A.Johnson, Lee Evans, Michael Clayton and Michael Jenkins) played more than 5 seasons with their drafting team. So much for "long term stability". This is what it looks like in graphical form:

1st_round_service_time_medium

Three 1st rounders (Rashaun Woods, R.Jay Soward and Sylvester Morris) only played one season in the league. The majority of the others played out their rookie contracts (typically 4 or 5 year deals) and bolted for greener pastures - or the unemployment line.

The 2000-2004 1st round WR's have compiled 154 seasons played and 90 of those (58%) have resulted in fewer than 50 receptions:

Number_receptions_medium

Not scared yet? Take out the three superstars (Wayne, Fitzgerald, A.Johnson) and the other 21 WR's have averaged a paltry 13% of their team's catches throughout their career. Hardly what one hopes for when selecting a receiver early in the draft.

So when the spring rolls around and your favorite team is considering a WR on Day 1 of the draft, don't get your hopes up too high. As exciting as it is to imagine Alshon Jeffery, Justin Blackmon or Michael Floyd as the next Reggie Wayne, Larry Fitzgerald or Andre Johnson, the WR class of 2012 is likely to produce more tricks than treats.

 

Read more of my work at http://pick256.wordpress.com/

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.