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Steelers "Sour 16" Bracket: ‘79 Greg Hawthorne vs. ‘91 Huey Richardson

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BTSC looks to the readers to help determine which Steeler first round pick since 1969 was the least successful. The first matchup is between a 1979 RB and Chuck Noll's final 1st.

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

While looking back at the first round selections of the Pittsburgh Steelers since 1969, it is apparent the Rooneys and the Steelers Personnel Department have had an astounding amount of success with their top pick throughout the years. It was very evident when trying to put together a list of 16 picks that didn't quite have the success expected out of a first round pick.

There are guys in the bracket I don't feel belong at all, like Chad Scott. After much consideration and complaints regarding the inclusion of Scott and Rashard Mendenhall, I've decided to eliminate them from the discussion and keep them out. I’m just going to treat it like the first round of 1988's Wrestlemania Tourney to decide the WWF Heavyweight Title when Andre the Giant and Hulk Hogan got disqualified.

Since this is just a fan poll and nothing is riding on it, why not?

We will just have a couple of byes. The decision was also made to have Gabe Rivera removed as well because of the vehicular accident that relegated him to a wheelchair for life and prohibited him from continuing a promising first and only six weeks as a professional. After a lot of thought that just feels better.

So, the top vote getter in the play-in round has been included. That's John Rienstra with 835 tallies that made up 45% of the vote. Second in votes was Bud Dupree, so he's being included as well...although I don't consider him deserving of the bust label. Keep in mind, most of these players included aren't necessarily true busts, but they make up the lower end of a fine lot.

The first matchup will be 1979's Greg Hawthorne and 1991's Huey Richardson. Let's take a look.

1979 Round 1 Pick 28

RB Greg Hawthorne-Baylor

Hawthorne spent five years with the Steelers and had 522 yards rushing, 710 receiving yards and 10 TDs total as a backup to Franco Harris. Hawthorne played only three games his senior year at Baylor before breaking a hip. The Steelers selected him anyway. With guys like Harris, Frank Pollard and Walter Abercrombie ahead of him, Hawthorne was moved to receiver and eventually requested a trade. He spent four more years in New England and Indianapolis before retiring.

1991 Round 1 Pick 15

DE Huey Richardson-Florida

Huey is regarded as possibly the most ill-advised pick ever in the first round for the Steelers. According to legend, the three players that the Steelers had in their que with three picks to go, all were selected. They didn’t have a fourth ready and were forced to scramble and settled on the All-American from Florida. Not familiar with the 3-4 defense, Richardson struggled and only had three tackles in five games for Pittsburgh. Bill Cowher and Tom Donahoe arranged a trade before the next season to Washington for a seventh-rounder or he would have been waived. Richardson didn’t last that season with the Skins and the Jets and was out of the league in just two seasons.

Be sure to vote and see who moves on in the "Sour 16" bracket.


Who should advance in the Steeler "Sour 16" bracket of first round busts?

This poll is closed

  • 3%
    1979 Greg Hawthorne
    (14 votes)
  • 96%
    1991 Huey Richardson
    (389 votes)
403 votes total Vote Now