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Bo Jackson Was the Biggest NFL Draft Bust Of All Time. And The Biggest Steal.

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With the 1st pick of the 1986 NFL Draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers selected Bo Jackson. He never played a game for them.

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Bo Jackson is a sports legend. The ESPN 30 For 30 documentary "You Don't Know Bo" produced about his exploits is one of the best that I've seen. While that documentary highlighted numerous stories and "myths" surrounding Bo, there were even more if left out. He was an amazing specimen of athletic ability. Since his retirement from sports, he's also been quite the philanthropist, particularly in Alabama since the 4/27 tornadoes in 2011.

He was also the biggest NFL Draft bust of all time.

No, I'm not kidding. Keep your Ryan Leafs, your JaMarcus Russells, your Johnny Footballs. At least they played a game for the team that drafted them.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers picked Bo Jackson, the reigning Heisman Trophy winner, 1st overall in the 1986 NFL Draft, and he never even signed with them, much less played a down for them.

The story was told in the aforementioned 30 For 30 about how a ride on Tampa Bay's team plane to visit the team's facilities caused Bo to be ruled ineligible for the final half of his senior baseball season. Bo believes it was an intentional move to get him away from baseball so that he'd sign when drafted in the NFL. The Tampa Bay Times website gave an even more detailed account of the story in an article last year around draft time.

I'd say that would make this pick by Tampa Bay the worst pick of all time. That's especially true since Bo warned them that he would do exactly what he did and never sign with the Bucs and choose to play baseball, instead.

Of course, the flip side of this is that one year later - after Tampa Bay's rights to him had expired - the Raiders picked Jackson up in Round 7 (there were 12 rounds in 1987) with the 183rd overall pick. That's a pick that could easily be considered the biggest steal in draft history. No one else apparently even considered that Jackson would be up for playing football in the first place after his choice to sign with the Kansas City Royals, but Al Davis was never one for doing anything conventional, so he took the chance and landed Bo in a late round.

Bo did things throughout his athletic career that amazed everyone. It's no surprise that he'd also end up with a distinction that shouldn't even be possible: being both the biggest bust and the biggest steal in NFL Draft history.