Limas Sweed, Jarvis Jones, Huey Richardson, Steelers draft busts

5 biggest NFL draft busts in Pittsburgh Steelers history

It is hard to name a team that has had more success in their history than the Pittsburgh Steelers. They are tied with the New England Patriots for the most Super Bowls with six total. Pittsburgh has had countless Hall of Famers and there is at least one more on their roster right now in Ben Roethlisberger.

The Steelers are known as a team that always finds success in the draft. Roethlisberger, Terry Bradshaw, “Mean” Joe Greene, and Jack Lambert are just a few names that Pittsburgh has hit on. Despite all of the highs, no franchise is perfect. Even the Steelers have missed on some draft picks over the years. Here are their five biggest draft busts.

5. Jarvis Jones

The 2013 NFL Draft did not see much talent at the top with the first two picks being used on offensive tackles. The Steelers kept that trend going in the mid-round when they took Jones with the 17th pick. Pittsburgh was in the midst of building yet another strong defense, but Jones did not add to it.

Jones lasted four years in Pittsburgh and totaled six sacks. He signed with the Arizona Cardinals in 2017 but was released a few months later with an injury settlement. For reference, Eric Reid was taken with the next pick and DeAndre Hopkins fell to No. 27.

4. Mark Malone

Believe it or not, there was a time when the Steelers struggled to find a starting quarterback. This time came when the legendary career of Bradshaw began winding down. In 1980, Malone was selected with the final pick of the first round.

Malone lasted seven years in Pittsburgh. He started 46 games and was not known for winning. Malone threw for 54 touchdowns and 68 interceptions. In his final season with the Steelers in 1987, Malone started 12 games and threw six touchdowns with 19 interceptions. He would go on to play 12 games with the San Diego Chargers and one game with the New York Jets before his career ended.

3. Limas Sweed

In 2008, the Steelers had a historically bad draft. They used their first round pick on Rashard Mendenhall, who they got two decent years out of. Their second round pick was a 6’5″ receiver out of Texas. Sweed’s cup of coffee did not last long in Pittsburgh.

Sweed played just two seasons with the Steelers and never caught on with another team. Injuries were a big part of his tenure as he played just 20 games. He finished his career with seven catches for 69 yards and no touchdowns. Being a second-round pick saved Sweed from being higher up on this list, but Steelers’ fans remember him vividly as an all-time bad pick.

2. Tim Worley

Worley was taken seventh overall in 1989. He was expected to turn into the next great running back in Pittsburgh. After his rookie season, fans felt confident. Worley finished with 770 yards and five touchdowns, but that turned out being his best year.

Worley struggled with substance abuse problems. He was limited to just two games in 1991 and missed the entire 1992 season. Worley played 33 games in four years with the Steelers. His time was limited because of off-the-field issues and he could not hold onto the ball on the field fumbling 16 times.

1. Huey Richardson

It is hard to argue against Richardson being the worst pick in Steelers’ history. Richardson was taken 15th overall in 1991 as a big time settle pick for Pittsburgh. Chuck Noll did not hit on his final draft selection. The Steelers played a 3-4 defense forcing them to move Richardson to inside linebacker. That proved to be a huge mistake.

Richardson lasted one season in Pittsburgh. In 1992, Bill Cowher was brought in and he gave Richardson a shot at outside linebacker. After yet another failed experiment, Richardson was dealt to the Washington Redskins. After four games in D.C. and seven games with the Jets, Richardson was out of the league.

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