Not all first-round draft picks work out. That is perhaps most true with the quarterback position. From 2011 to 2019, there were 28 quarterbacks selected on Day 1. Twelve of them never saw a second contract with the team that drafted them, while two are set to join that group and two more received an extension but were still moved on from shortly thereafter. And of course, the jury is still out on a few of the other ones.
So what happened? We looked at those 16 signal-callers and why their teams cut bait. How long did it take teams to move on? We went back to 2011 as a starting spot because that's when the current structure for the entry-level contract was established with the collective bargaining agreement. And we looked specifically at first-round quarterbacks because those are the calculated hefty investments -- both financially and in terms of draft capital and franchise direction -- whereas Day 2 and Day 3 QB picks are more likely dart throws and gambles.
We also tried to make sense of when teams tend to give up and cut their losses on a Round 1 quarterback, though every situation is different. And lastly, we took a look at four more former Round 1 picks who could be the next ones to be ditched -- including a pair of top-10 picks currently playing in New York -- and why.
Drafted: No. 8, 2011
The move: Benched, not re-signed
Starts before the Titans cut bait: 23
Why the team moved on: Locker's frequent bout with injuries kept him from living up to the expectations that come with being the No. 8 pick in the draft. The Titans finished no better than 7-9 with Locker as their quarterback. Tennessee didn't pick up Locker's fifth-year option before the 2014 season, and he briefly lost his job to rookie Zach Mettenberger later in that campaign. Rather than enter free agency, Locker retired in 2015, saying he lost his passion for football. -- Turron Davenport
What happened next: The Titans finished 2-14 in Locker's final season and selected Marcus Mariota with the No. 2 pick in the 2015 draft. Mariota took over as the starter and led the Titans to 9-7 records in 2016, 2017 and 2018 before suffering a similar fate. -- Davenport