Yesterday I wrote about free agent busts 6-10 since 2000 in part 1. Today we get to the top 5 and it should come as no surprise that Daniel "I've never met an overpriced free agent I didn't like" Snyder and the Washington Redskins dominate this list. Honestly, if anyone should be grateful for the lockout it has to be Redskins fans, and MLB of course.
5) Javon Walker (WR Oakland Raiders)
Imagine you're an NFL WR who's just been cut by your team after you missed half the season due to injuries. Realistically, what's the best deal you could hope for? Well if Al Davis is the one signing the checks, how about $55 million over six years with $16 million guaranteed. That's exactly the deal the Raiders handed Walker in 2008 after he was cut by the Broncos in a season where he had only 26 receptions and no touchdowns in eight games. Anyone want to guess what happened with the Raiders? Plagued by injuries, Walker lasted only two years in Oakland where he had a scant 15 receptions and one TD in eleven games. For those doing the math at home, that's more than $1 million per reception.
4) Ahman Green (RB Houston Texans)
Let me give some advice to all the GMs out there, since I know they're all reading this. If you're signing a RB who's been in the NFL for nine seasons, has carried the ball just under 2,000 times, and his last two seasons were plagued by injuries, expecting him to be a reliable every down back is about as realistic as expecting Brangelina to stop adopting foreign babies. But that's what the Texans were hoping for when they signed Green to a four year, $23 million contract in 2007. Predictably, Green struggled through two more injury riddled seasons where he played in only 14 games, rushed for 554 yards, and scored just 5 touchdowns, before being let go in 2009. Now if they could just figure out a way to cut ties with head coach Gary Kubiak, they might actually make the playoffs for the first time in franchise history.
The rest of the top 5 biggest free agent busts after the jump.
3) Deion Sanders (CB Washington Redskins)
When the I'vegotasunburnskins signed Sanders to a whopping seven year, $56 million contract in 2000, new owner Daniel Snyder said Sanders was "the ultimate weapon in football." If by "ultimate weapon" he meant he was great at destroying locker rooms, he was right. Sanders could still cover receivers, and finished his first and only year in our nation's capitol with four interceptions, but his tendency to run the opposite direction of running backs became even more apparent as he got older. To make matters worse, the Redskins released their leading KR/PR, Brian Mitchell, to make room for Deion, only to watch him have a very pedestrian 7.4 yards per punt return, while Mitchell continued to dominate for the next three years with the rival Eagles, returning 2 punts and 2 kickoffs for touchdowns and averaging 11.7 yards per punt return. But Sanders did have one notable achievement for the Redskins. In 2002, while being a guest commentator on a game between the Redskins and Cowboys on MNF, Sanders became the first person ever to be part of the broadcast team in the booth while also still receiving a salary from both teams playing on the field.
2) Adam "no I'm not related to David" Archuleta (S Washington Redskins)
In 2006 Snyder struck again when he made Archuleta the then highest paid Safety in the history of the NFL, signing him to a seven year, $35 million contract, with $10 million guaranteed. Despite his huge salary, Archuleta got to know the bench better than the field. He rode the pine for the entire second half of his only season in Washington and finished the year with no interceptions and just one sack. Luckily for the Redskins, the Bears were almost as stupid as they were. They dumped Archuleta and the remaining $5 million of his bonus on the Bears in a trade after the season. After one season in Chicago the Bears couldn't find anyone as dumb as them so they simply dumped Archuleta on the curb. Archuleta is now out of football, but don't feel too bad for him. I can think of worse things in life than earning tens of millions of dollars playing football and being married to playboy playmate Jennifer Walcott.
1) Albert Haynesworth (DT Washington Redskins)
Come on, everyone had to see this coming. Where to even begin with Haynesworth and his $100 million contract with $41 million of it guaranteed? I could mention how he complained about having to show up for work at the start of last season, couldn't even pass a conditioning test, played in only 8 games, and finished the year with just 16 tackles and 2.5 sacks. Or there's the road rage incident in February when Haynesworth was tailgating a man, flipped him off, and when the man pulled over Haynesworth beat him up. But maybe the best is the sexual assault charge being filed against him by a waitress who's accused him of fondling her while she served him. And what's his defense? Why he's using the old, I don't "even like black girls" and that she's just jealous because "I was with a white woman." Seriously, you can't even make this stuff up. Although, the Redskins should have seen some of this coming when Haynesworth, still with the Titans, stomped on Andre Gurode's head even though Gurode wasn't wearing a helmet. By any definition of the word, Haynesworth has got to go down as not only the biggest bust of the last decade, but the biggest bust in the history of the NFL, which is good since he's unlikely to get one in Canton.