5 biggest NFL draft busts in Virginia Tech football history

Virginia Tech football hasn't produced many first-round NFL draft picks, but most of the very highly drafted players have panned out in the league. These later first-round selections, however, haven't worked out as well and are the biggest draft busts.

Tennessee Titans cornerback Caleb Farley (3) drops back in coverage during the first quarter of a
Tennessee Titans cornerback Caleb Farley (3) drops back in coverage during the first quarter of a / George Walker IV / USA TODAY NETWORK
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Jim Druckenmiller, QB. 1. player. 42. . Jim Druckenmiller, QB. Jim Druckenmiller. . 1997. No. 26 overall

There is no question about who is the biggest draft bust in Virginia Tech football history. Jim Druckenmiller was supposed to be the next great quarterback for the 49ers, following Steve Young, who replaced Joe Montana. Druckenmiller didn’t even finish his rookie contract in San Francisco. 

Druckenmiller had back-to-back 2,000-yard passing seasons at Virginia Tech and was the 1996 Big East Offensive Player of the Year, but he did that at 24 years old. Druckenmiller was a 25-year-old rookie in the NFL and was still expected to be a developmental project behind Young. 

The 49ers didn’t realize that Druckenmiller had already reached his ceiling. In 1997, he was forced to start a game in Young’s absence and he completed 10 of 28 passes for 102 yards and a touchdown with three interceptions and one touchdown. It was clear immediately that he couldn’t play in the NFL and that was ultimately his only NFL start. 

After a second season backing up Young, Druckenmiller was traded to Miami, but never played a snap for the Dolphins. Over his six career appearances, Druckenmiller completed 21 of 52 passes for 239 yards and a touchdown with four picks and four sacks.

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