Right now, at the moment of this writing, the WWE has approximately 250 wrestlers employed on their roster across five different shows encompassing nine hours a week. While that might seem like it’s a fairly even split of talent per show, some talent appears on more than one show. Some talent barely appear at all. According to Daniel Bryan on the CM Punk DVD, there are always some talent in the locker room that are content just to collect a paycheck.
While some of these guys might not be just content to get a check, they are barely used and barely seen. Whether they want their release or not, whether they enjoy traveling and not taking nearly as many bumps as they used to be debatable.
10 The Ascension
When Triple H needed a monster heel tag team to round out the NXT roster, he tasked the Ascension to be that team. But for whatever reason, clearly Vince McMahon either never saw the need for yet another painted face, ass kicking team, or he just didn’t see it in the Ascension. The guys have actually been in the company on one roster or another since 2011 and on the main roster since 2014. Can anyone figure out the last time they had a tag match on Raw or Smackdown? Either heat them up on one of the rosters or let them go.
9 Alicia Fox
Being the longest tenured female shouldn’t net you a career. No disrespect to the Foxy One, but she did kind of cost Arn Anderson his job when he allowed her to work intoxicated at a House Show.
For whatever reason, she wasn’t reprimanded. That, plus the extent of how she’s barely or poorly used could free up a roster spot for another capable lady.
8 Apollo Crews
A six-foot-one, 240-pound monster that can do shooting star presses from a standing position. You’d think Vince would be all over that athleticism and physique. But instead, Apollo Crews’ greatest claim to fame has been playing second fiddle to Titus. Now that there are several other places to work, the WWE might not want to let anyone go, but it’s still surprising that a guy with so much raw (no pun intended) talent isn’t being used.
7 Curtis Axel
As the son of Mr. Perfect and grandson of Larry the Ax, Joe Hennig had a huge name to live up to. It almost made sense to not put that burden on him by calling him Michael McGillicutty. But then the announcers would call out who he’s related to! Every so often, the WWE trots him out there to either team up with Bo Dallas or chase around the 24/7 Champion. There are several wrestlers on this list that could benefit from new scenery, but only one guy has the name value of wrestling history, and that’s Curtis Axel.
6 Eric Young
For someone who is such a talented hand that can have a good match with anyone, does anyone know whose cereal Eric Young went to the bathroom in? The guy busted his hump in TNA and did any and all nonsense that was asked of him (including blatantly ripping off both Santino and Daniel Bryan). He showed up to NXT to not a lot of fanfare, but his group SaNiTy was starting to gain some traction when they were drafted to the main roster. Sadly, Young hasn’t been used much on the main roster. The only high profile angle he’s been involved with lately was getting smashed with a chair by Seth Rollins on the road to Rollins’ match with Baron Corbin.
5 Heath Slater
Ok, so he’s got kids to feed, but heating Heath back up again to make him credible in fans’ eyes as some sort of contender for something would be extremely difficult. Slater debuted strong as one of the members of the Nexus.
But every time he got anywhere near a semblance of being heated up, he was pushed to the bottom of the card. He and Rhyno won the inaugural Smackdown Live tag titles, but much like the rest of the people on this list, that was already years ago and he hasn’t been used a helluvalot since.
4 Shelton Benjamin
Shelton Benjamin got one of the rawest deals in history. He’s one of the most athletically gifted wrestlers to grace the ring during the modern era. But his developmental class featured not one, but four of the greatest superstars of any era - Cena, Orton, Batista, and Lesnar. While that always makes him second fiddle, Benjamin still could have an amazing run, should the company ever turn him loose.
3 Tino Sabatelli
From a physique standpoint, Tino Sabatelli certainly looks the part of a wrestler, or at least Vince McMahon’s idea of what a wrestler should look like. However, Sabatelli has spent five years in developmental and most of those have been injured. The former NFL player was first out with a concussion and now has been dealing a pectoral injury. He’s barely on TV and how much do you want to invest in someone that’s been injured several times already and hasn’t been able to have a proper run in developmental?
Similar to guys elsewhere on this list and beyond, Fandango is another guy grossly underused and underrated. After gaining some traction with Tyler Breeze, ‘Dango got injured last year.
Now, a part of NXT perhaps the Fashion Police will be reunited. But if you’re not gonna use him for anything, it might be time to either transition Fandango to be a trainer or an agent.
1 Luke Harper
While he has recently reappeared on WWE programming, Luke Harper has taken to social media for months that he wants to leave. He’s one of the best big man brawlers in the sport and for whatever reason has only been allowed to show off a mere fraction of what he’s capable of. WWE clearly think he and Rowan are best suited to be with the each other - maybe they can both stay injury free long enough to make the dent that Vince sees them making.