2. Courtney Brown, DE (2005-06)
It was only for a brief time, but one of the three former #1 overall NFL Draft picks to play for the Denver Broncos was the top pick of the 2000 NFL Draft, former Penn State star Courtney Brown.
Courtney Brown started every game of his rookie season, finishing 4th in the Defensive Rookie of the Year voting after racking up 16 TFLs, 4.5 sacks, and 8 batted passes. He was obviously expected to come in and give the Cleveland Browns a true defensive cornerstone piece along with their top pick in the 1999 NFL Draft, quarterback Tim Couch.
Unfortunately for the Browns, neither Tim Couch nor Courtney Brown ever became fixtures for the team. In fact, they would probably be considered among the team's lengthy list of NFL Draft busts. But in his lone year with the Denver Broncos, Courtney Brown was a key piece of one of the best and most underrated defenses in Broncos franchise history.
Although he signed a lengthy big-money contract with the Broncos, Courtney Brown simply couldn't stay healthy enough to remain in the NFL beyond that 2005 season in Denver. He was able to play in 14 games for the Broncos in 2005, racking up 24 total tackles, 6 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, and a batted pass.
The 2005 Denver Broncos defense ranked 3rd best in the NFL in points allowed, and they were a team that simply couldn't be run on. They had the 2nd-best run defense in the league that year and they forced a ton of turnovers -- 36 in all. Teams were forced to throw against this team thanks to the dominance up front of guys like Courtney Brown and the rest of the "Brown-cos" like Gerard Warren, Michael Myers, and Ebenezer Ekuban.