As we steamroll toward the 2012 NFL draft, we take a brief look back into the annals of Buccaneer history to provide you the best and worst of the previous Tampa Bay Buccaneers drafts. These opinions are of the article's author and not intended to represent the consensus of all the staff of Buc Nation.
Throughout the history of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, there have been just some terrible misses in the NFL draft. Many of these occurred between 1980-94 when the franchise was mired in one of the worst runs in sports history. A lot of them occurred in the 2nd or 3rd round - which is as far back in the draft as we wanted to go to consider a bust (after all, if a 5th round pick doesn't amount to much, it's not really a bust - just a waste).
Of all of these bad apples, these are the ten I feel have been the worst picks in Franchise history.
List: 10 Worst Draft picks in Buccaneers History
10. Kenyatta Walker, 1st round, pick 14, 2001
9. Dexter Jackson, WR, 2nd round, pick 27, 2008
8. Dan Sileo, DT, 3rd Round, Supplemental, 1987
7. Charles McRae, T, 1st round, pick 7, 1991
6. Rod Jones, CB, 1st Round, pick 25, 1986
5. Gaines Adams, 1st round, pick 4, 2007
4. Bo Jackson, RB, 1st Round, 1st Overall, 1986
3. Eric Curry, DE, 1st Round, pick 6, 1993
Player: Keith McCants
Draft: 1st round, pick 4, 1990
Before the Eric Curry mistake, Keith McCants was the first Alabama high draft choice to fail the Buccaneers. The Bucs chose McCants over USC linebacker Junior Seau because of Head Coach Ray Perkins familiarity with the player.
McCants had a dominant college career and was a tackling machine for the Crimson Tide. Perkins envisioned McCants solidifying the Bucs linebacking core for at least three years - at least that's what he told doctors when they told him that McCants was a medical risk and that he's knee may give him four solid years - at best.
After a disappointing rookie season saw him start just four games at linebacker, new Bucs coach Richard Williamson and defensive coordinator Floyd Peters converted McCants to defensive end. The increase in weight to play the position eliminated his speed and McCants never became the dominant force he was expected to become.
''To tell the truth, I do not see a future at defensive end,'' McCants said about the position change, ''I'm going to tell you about the toughest thing I had to do this year. It wasn't playing defensive end. It was accepting the role of defensive end. That was tough because I am a linebacker."
The Buccaneers had Broderick Thomas, who was already in the role that McCants was supposed to provide, a pass rushing linebacker with the ability to make plays. McCants had no future at linebacker in Tampa Bay.
When the team drafted Eric Curry, McCants had hoped it would allow him to return to linebacker and that he and his fellow Alabama alumni could rekindle some of that Roll Tide magic.
Unfortunately for McCants, he never got the opportunity to play with his college teammate, as he was cut during the 1993 pre-season.
Upon his release, new Bucs coach Sam Wyche said, ''We dang sure went the whole nine yards with trying him at defensive end and trying him at Sam (strong-side) linebacker. We gave him a look at every spot. He gave it his best shot. We've got none, and he should have no regrets about anything that has happened. It just didn't work out.''
McCants would catch on with the Houston Oilers and was on every highlight reel in America not for his spectacular play but for being the player who broke up the scuffle between defensive coordinator Buddy Ryan and offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride during a Nationally televised game.
On the field McCants didn't do much for the Oilers or the Arizona Cardinals before retiring in 1995.
What went wrong with Keith McCants?
The Bucs ruined him by playing him out of position (33 votes)
He was damaged goods. (49 votes)
He just wasn't that good. (49 votes)
Three coaching staffs in three seasons - nuff said. (34 votes)
165 total votes