Trading in the NFL is so rare because teams are loathe to give up people they spent picks on. They are willing to spend draft picks to fill their rosters, and trades of that nature have netted some of the greatest players in the sport. Trading one guy for another is much different, and this article explains some of the worst trades ever made in the NFL. Players who are acquired in the wrong way may damage a team for a decade, and lopsided trades cause a lack of parody in the NFL from year to year.
#1: Oilers Trading Away Steve Largent
Steve Largent was once the greatest receiver in league history. He has a trophy in Canton that is almost two stories tall for his achievement in breaking the career receiving mark, and he played nearly all that time for the Seahawks. he was traded to the Seahawks by the Oilers for an eighth round pick. There is no eighth round today, and the pick looks worse because the Oilers could have used Largent after finding Warren Moon out of the CFL. They missed out one a potential dynasty pairing because they did not evaluate Largent properly.
#2: Redskins Moving Up To Get Robert Griffin III
The Redskins gave away their everything to get Griffin, and they traded so much to the Rams that it looked like a sure thing. He played an incredible rookie season that will go down in history, but he faded fast. He is currently playing on and off for the Browns in what could be his last stop. The Redskins drafted Kirk Cousins with their first pick in the second round, and he looks like a $100 million dollar quarterback. The Redskins recovered, but the trade looks as dumb today as it did brilliant on the day of the draft.
#3: Saints Trade For Ricky Williams
The Saints traded a total of eight draft picks to get Heisman winner Ricky Williams. Ricky Williams may have been one of the finest talents to enter the NFL, and his running could have anchored an offense in New Orleans. Mike Ditka did not estimate Williams’ passion for the game properly, and Williams ultimately flamed out because he was more interested in meditation and smoking pot. The Saints lost big, and Ditka was fired. A bad trade paved the way years later for Drew Brees to come save the state of Louisiana.
#4: Chargers Trade Picks To Get Ryan Leaf
Ryan Leaf may be the biggest bust in NFL history. He came out of college with every intangible, every metric and a film collection to die for. He was unstable, erratic and uncoachable. The Chargers gave up several draft picks and a couple players to get Leaf, and all they got in return was someone they could not make due with. He became a burnout, a felon and a symbol for poor talent evaluation.
#5: Steve Young To The 49ers
The Bucs decided they did not want to wait for Steve Young to become a starting quarterback, and they traded him to the 49ers for nothing. They believed he would not develop in any system, but Young spent seven years backing up Joe Montana. He was prepared for the job when he took over, and he won the Super Bowl not long after. His hall of fame career included every noteworthy achievement, and he is considered to be the last of the small mobile quarterbacks.
NFL trades may be dangerous, and these five prove the point. Each one was a well-intentioned move to do right by the team, but the executives in each deal gave up potential for what turned out to be failure.