Top 15 Worst Draft Mistakes in Philadelphia Eagles History

The NFL Draft is a captivating event. Often times we see the futures of NFL teams sparked by the choices that they make during the Draft. However on the other hand, a misguided pick can leave the team

The NFL Draft is a captivating event. Often times we see the futures of NFL teams sparked by the choices that they make during the Draft. However on the other hand, a misguided pick can leave the team in ruin for years to come.

Every NFL team has their own terrible draft selection list, but you may be surprised to realize that the Philadelphia Eagles, who have never won a Super Bowl, are one of the best drafters in NFL history.... that was a joke. The history of the Philadelphia Eagles were founded back in 1933 and have made a variety of disappointing draft selections, hence the lack of Super Bowl wins.

This list was carefully researched and selected based on a set of criteria aimed to help find terrible Eagles draft picks that either turned out to be terrible players or players who negatively influenced the Eagles franchise. Although the list could be much longer, these are 15 selections that stick out far above the rest.

15. Siran Stacy


The Eagles didn’t have a first round pick in 1992. They had to wait for the 48th pick and they used it on running back Siran Stacy. Stacy had the talent to go earlier in the draft but he was known to have a bad reputation, so other teams wisely passed on him. He had been involved in a number of juvenile criminal activities and suffered a serious knee injury in college. Yet the Eagles took a gamble on Siran, hoping he had grown up a bit. They were wrong.  Prior to his rookie season, he was caught speeding and made things even worse by assaulting his girlfriend later in the year. Sealing his fate even further was the fact that the Eagles signed Herschel Walker, which resulted in Stacy not playing at all.

After the 1992 season, the Eagles cut Stacy loose and he never saw an NFL field again.

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14 Brandon Whiting


We are sure that there are plenty of Philadelphia Eagles fans who remember the touchdown bombs that Donovan McNabb threw to Terrell Owens. But more importantly, most NFL fans remember the amazing amount of distractions and controversies that Terrell Owens brought to the Eagles. Now, obviously, we cannot place Owens on this list since he was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers or we could he would have been an easy choice. T.O. was a huge detriment to the team in many different ways, but as we said T.O. can't be on the list. If we can’t blame him, who can we blame? Why not blame the guy who was part of the trade that brought T.O. to the Philadelphia Eagles?

Brandon Whiting, a DE drafted in 1998, played a respectable five seasons with the Eagles where he recorded 16.5 sacks. Then in 2003, a fifth round draft pick and Whiting were packaged together to bring Terrell Owens to the Eagles, which usher in a period of time filled with highs and very low lows for the franchise.

13 L.J. Smith


L.J. Smith was expected to come in and serve as a receiving TE similar to rival TE Jeremy Shockey, who was in his prime in the mid 200s. Drafted in the second round of the 2003 NFL Draft, Smith never lived up to those expectations. Averaging 38.5 receptions and three touchdowns per season during his time with the Eagles, Smith never made it past "meh" status in the record books. After six lackluster seasons with the Eagles, he spent a single season with the Baltimore Ravens before retiring.

12 Todd Pinkston 


The bad receiver train keeps on rolling with Todd Pinkston. Drafted in the second round of the 2000 NFL Draft, he played with the Eagles from 2000-05. Pinkston was a tall and skinny receiver with a knack for making a big play, but often refused to go across the middle to run routes and was often criticized for his lack of physical presence on the field. No defense coordinator stayed up late at night worrying about him. Even though he was known for his big play ability, he only managed 14 touchdowns over five seasons. In 2005, he tore his Achilles tendon and never shook off the injury.

11 Leroy Keyes 


The 1969 NFL Draft is widely known for giving the NFL greats like O.J. Simpson (regardless of what happened after his career), Roger Wehril, and Joe Greene. Who had the third overall pick in this legendary draft? The Eagles. To everyone's surprise, they selected running back/defensive back Leroy Keyes. Keyes had four terrible seasons with Eagles, where he produced 2.95 yards per attempt, scored only three touchdowns and eight interceptions. Needless to say, the Eagles passed on many legends, including Joe Greene who went fourth overall, and selected a player that wasn't effective on either side of the ball.

10 Matt McCoy 


Linebacker Matt McCoy was drafted in 2005 with the aspirations that he would help the Eagles struggling linebacker corps. As a second round pick, he was expected to step in immediately and produce for the team and he was given the starting job during his second season in the league. After a disappointing 2006 in which he lost his starting job, it took the Eagles another half season to realize they had been wasting their time. He was released in 2007 and was out of the league by 2011.

9 Jon Harris


Jon Harris is one of many defensive linemen who have been picked early in the draft by the Eagles to end up a bust. Drafted in the first round of the 1997 NFL Draft, Harris never lived up to his expectations. He was a complete waste of a draft pick, let alone a first rounder, In his two seasons of professional football, he recorded a grand total of two sacks. Two sacks are not really first round production. Hell, that isn’t really even fifth round production.

8 Freddie Mitchell 


There was a long line of wide receivers to come and go during the early 2000s on the Eagles roster. They were always searching for the perfect fit for Donovan McNabb and usually looked to the draft. Freddie Mitchell is a perfect example of how the Eagles failed to achieve find the right receivers for McNabb during that period. Drafted in 2001 as a first rounder and as the number one WR for McNabb, Mitchell, or Fedex, had a big mouth and big expectations. Despite having a few memorable moments, Mitchell failed to deliver consistent number. He never caught more than 35 receptions in a single season and never broke 500 yards. He probably shouldn't thank his hands, but chastise them.

7 Winston Justice

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The number one job of an offensive lineman is to protect the quarterback, which is what they expected from Winston Justice when he was drafted in the second round of the 2006 NFL Draft. In his first two seasons, he only started one game. How bad could one game get for a lineman you ask? In that one game, Justice gave up six sacks to the rival New York Giants, which is obviously pretty terrible. He started for them over the next two seasons, but wasn't much better. After getting traded in 2012 to Indy, he played a couple of seasons, but is now out of the league.

6 John Reaves


The Eagles have had numerous quarterbacks come and go in their lengthy history, but no one came and went as quickly as John Reaves. John Reaves was drafted as the 14th overall pick in 1972 and was on the team for only three seasons. After he went 0-7 in his first seven games, the Eagles knew pretty quickly that they had made a mistake with this pick. At the end of his career, his record was 4-13, which is simply not good enough for a first round pick.

5 Leonard Renfro 


Leonard Renfro was drafted 24th overall by the Eagles in 1993. By 1994 he was out of the league. Yeah, that's pretty bad. As big of a first round flop as they come, Renfro recorded zero sacks in 23 games. for the Eagles and no one even took a flier on him after he was released by the Eagles. Two picks later, the 49ers selected the dependable Dana Stubblefield, who played the same position and was a multiple-time Pro Bowler. The Eagles really missed on this pick.

4 Bernard Williams


Bernard Williams is a fantastic example of how terrible the Eagles were at drafting in the mid 1990s. Drafted in the first round of the 1994 NFL Draft (14th overall), Williams started every game of his rookie yea. Which just so happens to be one more than the number of failed drug tests he had. Yes, he actually failed fifteen drug tests. Known for smoking marijuana, and later being unable to stop smoking marijuana, he would be banned by his second season, never to play in the NFL again. He later played three seasons in the Canadian Football League, where they are a little more lenient on their drug policy.

3 Kevin Allen


The biggest reason Kevin Allen is listed this high on the list is because of who the Eagles could have drafted instead of him. Kevin Allen, an offensive tackle, was drafted ninth overall in the 1985 NFL Draft. Allen played only a single season in the NFL, which is an obvious indication that he was a huge bust. Allen’s first career start was against the amazing Lawrence Taylor and the New York Giants. Taylor racked up a spectacular eight sacks while lined up against Allen. After his terrible rookie season he was tested positive for cocaine and released from the team before his second season ever got started. If that wasn’t enough, he was charged for sexual assault and spent 33 months in prison only a week after getting cut. Allen is actually one of a very small group of players who have received lifelong bans from the NFL. Wow, that's a pretty incredible flame out from the league

Oh and Jerry Rice, considered the best wide receiver of all time, was drafted only seven picks after Allen. Ouch.

2 Jerome McDougle


Drafted as the 15th overall pick in 2003, Jerome McDougle is a close second on our worst Eagles draft mistakes list. The Eagles franchise has a history of making bad moves in the draft and this was no exception, as they moved up 15 picks to grab McDougle. How did their return on investment pan out? Partly due to injuries, he rewarded the team with three sacks in three seasons.

Here's the hard part. The very next pick in the draft was future Super Bowl champion and future Hall of Famer, Troy Polamalu. That's a tough pill to swallow.

1 Mike Mamula


Every Eagles fan will automatically recognize, and surely agree with, our selection for the worst Eagles draft mistake. During the draft, the Eagles traded up and gave three draft picks to grab Mamula. What did they get in return? 31.5 sacks and 8 forced fumbles. Not really a great return on investment.

That's not bad for a player that was drafted in the second or third round. Not the seventh overall pick who cost you three draft picks. If you're wondering what the Tampa Bay Buccaneers got in that draft, they were able to draft both Warren Sapp and Derrick Brooks, with Sapp being a pick acquired from the Eagles at 12th overall.

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Top 15 Worst Draft Mistakes in Philadelphia Eagles History