10 biggest NFL draft busts in UCLA football history

The UCLA Bruins have produced plenty of Hall of Famers in the first round of the NFL draft, but in football there's a Josh Rosen to every Troy Aikman.
Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen
Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen / David Wallace/The Republic
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51. 1988. Gaston Green, RB. player. . . Gaston Green. No. 14 overall. Gaston Green, RB. 5

In 1987, Gaston Green and Troy Aikman led the UCLA Bruins to a share of the Pac-10 title. Aikman was the star but still had another season in college football before leaving for the NFL, so Green was UCLA’s top pick in the 1988 NFL Draft. 

Green was coming off back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons in LA and got to stay at home when the LA Rams selected him. Typically, a player making it to the NFL right in their own backyard eases the transition, but for Green, it was very rocky. So much so, that after three seasons with 451 total rushing yards and no touchdowns, he was traded to play for Denver in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains. 

The Broncos had an excellent offensive line in place and a need at running back, so Green slid right in and ran for 1,037 yards and four touchdowns in 1991. He was named to the Pro Bowl just one season after the team that drafted him gave up on him. However, the Rams wouldn’t regret the decision for long because after regressing to 648 yards and two scores in 1992, Green was out of professional football after just five years. 

It’s rare to have a Pro Bowler on a list of draft busts, but it’s clear that the 1991 season was an aberration, and the fact that it happened for a different team than the one that drafted him adds to the disappointment for that team with their selection.