With the NFL being the only professional sport that is seeming to move on at a semi-normal pace during its offseason, April’s upcoming draft is a great reminder of the players that have come into this league and how their successes/failures have dictated team’s actions since then.

Looking back to 2010, the first-overall selections in each of the past 10 drafts have been mixed bags, filled with QB’s going first and teams regretting their decision soon after. With a few non-QB’s mixed in, let’s take a trip back to see how the drafts have panned out from the top selections.

2010 – Sam Bradford
QB, Oklahoma
Drafted by: St. Louis
Current team: Free agent

To start off this piece, Sam Bradford was seen as the ‘best option’ for the Rams in the 2010 NFL Draft, as they were quite desperate to draft a franchise leader. Having picked second the year prior and selected OT Jason Smith, the Rams were looking to for something more solid, and Bradford was their guy.

Injuries plagued Bradford for his entire career, as his throwing shoulder seemed to get mauled injured almost every game. While he went on to have good seasons with the Rams, he was quickly out of St. Louis (after five rocky seasons) and played for the Eagles, Vikings, and Cardinals after.

He last played in 2018 with Arizona after having signed a 2/$40M deal but was released before the end of ‘18. Currently a free agent, Bradford’s time in the league is over.

2011 – Cam Newton
QB, Auburn
Drafted by: Carolina
Current team: Free Agent

The first positive story in this piece, Cam Newton came out of Auburn as the consensus best pick in the draft, and he was one of three QB’s taken in the ‘11 draft (others were Jake Locker and Blaine Gabbert – gross).

He won Rookie of the Year, set all-time NFL rookie records for passing and rushing yardage, and made the Pro Bowl three times and led this team to Super Bowl 50, losing 24-10. That same year was when Newton won his lone NFL MVP award, and he put on a clinic that season, both running and passing the ball.

But with staff changeover in 2020, Newton is out of a job and was released by Carolina after they were unable to find a trade partner. The former top pick is out on the street, and while no suitors have been jumping on his availability, he is too good of a talent to be jobless for long.

2012 – Andrew Luck
QB, Stanford
Drafted by: Indianapolis
Current team: Retired

The total professional in every aspect of his job, Andrew Luck’s career was very solid, and he went out on his own terms, something that many players have been choosing as of late, valuing safety over money. But for Luck, his pressure coming in as the 1st selection was greater than most because of the QB that had just departed.

Peyton Manning was now a member of the Denver Broncos and Luck was tasked with replacing the last 14 years of memories right out of the gate as a rookie, something no one should be tasked with doing. Yet, Luck’s career started out very strong, leading the Colts to the playoffs in three consecutive seasons to open his career, 2012-14.

While 2017 was lost to injury, no signs truly pointed to Luck wanting to walk away from the game, yet during halftime of a preseason contest in ‘19, the rumor leaked and people were told: Luck is done with football. An abrupt end to a very solid career, Luck is one of the players choosing to forego years of torture on his body and to keep his health at the forefront of his decisions.

2013 – Eric Fisher
OT, Central Michigan
Drafted by: Kansas City
Current team: Kansas City Chiefs

A bit of a surprising selection at the time, Eric Fisher’s rise from Central Michigan offensive tackle to first-overall selection was a surprising one and one that surprisingly didn’t involve a QB. The first QB did not go until 16 (E.J. Manuel) in this specific NFL Draft, but Fisher was quite the polarizing prospect.

Out of a smaller Division-I school, Fisher’s rise up the draft boards was a shocker to some, and the Chiefs’ decision seemed to have fallen flat in his first few years in the league. Consistently becoming a liability on the edge, Fisher was deemed a bust from the get-go.

But he remains with the Chiefs to this day, and he is a solid tackle for the Chiefs for at least one more season.

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2014 – Jadeveon Clowney
DE, South Carolina
Drafted by: Houston
Current team: Free agent

The first defensive player on this list, Jadeveon Clowney has been destroying backfields since he was drafted in 2014. Pairing up with J.J. Watt for the majority of his career, Clowney was a wrecking ball on the defensive front, blowing up QBs and plays behind the line.

Clowney was traded by slingin’ Bill O’Brien to the Seattle Seahawks last year, and he thrived with Seattle. Waiting for a new contract, Clowney looks to cash in this winter.

2015 – Jameis Winston
QB, Florida State
Drafted by: Tampa Bay
Current team: Free agent

The much-maligned QB from FSU is in need of a new team, just like Newton, but comes with much more baggage. Leading the league in potential turnover plays, the controversial QB has played himself out of his current deal with Tampa Bay, with Tom Brady stepping in.

Marred in controversy ever since his collegiate career, Winston will be forced to pick from a small pool of starting jobs this offseason, some of which may not be beneficial to his future financial gains.

2016 – Jared Goff
QB, California
Drafted by: St. Louis
Current team: Los Angeles (formerly St. Louis)

Marking the second QB taken first overall by the Rams in his decade, Jared Goff’s time with the now-LA Rams has been solid, if unspectacular. Quarterbacking his team to a loss in last year’s SB, Goff is now running the show underneath Sean McVay with the Todd Gurley departure.

Of the QBs on this list, Goff looks to be the one in the best state on his team, and he projects to remain a top-15 QB in the league for the next few seasons.

2017 – Myles Garrett
DE, Texas A&M
Drafted by: Cleveland
Current team: Cleveland

While the headlines follow Myles Garrett for his Steelers incident last year, he has put together a really strong NFL career to this point and is only the second defensive player on this list.

Garrett, who was the first of two consecutive 1st-overall selections made by Cleveland in back-to-back years, went before the Bears fatefully took Mitch Trubisky, and was in the same draft as Deshaun Watson and Patrick Mahomes. The 6’5, 262 DE remains a mainstay on the Browns defensive front and looks to be a badly-needed stud for CLE.

2018 – Baker Mayfield
QB, Oklahoma
Drafted by: Cleveland
Current team: Cleveland

The 2nd of two consecutive 1st-overall selections and the first of two consecutive QBs taken 1st overall from Oklahoma, Baker Mayfield’s career trajectory has been quite up and down, and his personality has likened him to Johnny Manziel in certain instances.

While his footing may not be as strong as Goff’s is, Mayfield and the Browns are a disastrous marriage that probably won’t break up for a long time. Tied to mediocrity for the long haul, Mayfield’s roller-coaster-like career here will probably continue for a while, but he has the tools to thrive and become THE guy under new HC Kevin Stefanski.

2019 – Kyler Murray
QB, Oklahoma
Drafted by: Arizona
Current team: Arizona

The final entrant on our list is also the only player ever that was drafted in the 1st round in two leagues, MLB and NFL. The former Oakland Athletic’s first-round selection thrived under Kliff Kingsbury in his rookie season, and with the addition of DeAndre Hopkins alongside Larry Fitzgerald, 2020 has the makings of a breakout year for Murray.

While the Cardinals play in the tough NFC West, Murray seems to have the tools around him and inside him physically to make a run at a playoff berth.