If you're looking for someone to give a sympathy cheer to this weekend in the NFL playoffs, make it Atlanta Falcons TE Tony Gonzalez. Gonzalez has done a lot of impressive things in his 16-year NFL career, but there's one thing he's never done: win a playoff game.
As the NFL heads into the divisional round, Gonzalez headlines a group of seven active players who have played more than 100 career regular-season games but have gone 0-for-their-careers in the playoffs.
- TE Tony Gonzalez, Falcons: 254 career games played, 0-5 in postseason
- PK Matt Bryant, Falcons: 147 career games played, 0-5 in postseason
- CB Dunta Robinson, Falcons: 131 career games played, 0-2 in postseason
- WR Roddy White, Falcons: 128 career games played, 0-3 in postseason
- OL Tyson Clabo, Falcons: 100 career games played, 0-3 in postseason
|The home of the Super Bowl|
Gonzalez has the most yards, the most catches and the most touchdown receptions of any tight end in NFL history, but that has meant zero for him in the postseason, where he's 0-5. The winless mark includes an 0-3 record during his 12-year career with the Chiefs and an 0-2 record with the Falcons.
Gonzalez's toughest postseason loss may have been his first one, a 14-10 loss to the Broncos after the 1997 season. In that game -- where Gonzalez scored a third-quarter touchdown -- the Chiefs drove inside Denver's 20-yard line in the final minute, but they were unable to convert a short fourth down. The win over Kansas City propelled QB John Elway and the Broncos to the franchise's first Super Bowl title.
Beside Gonzalez, the Falcons will have four other players on the field Sunday who have played in at least 100 career regular-season games, but have yet to win in the playoffs. CB Dunta Robinson (131 career regular season games), WR Roddy White (128) and T Tyson Clabo (100) are all looking for their first postseason win. Clabo and White are both 0-3 thanks to Falcons playoff losses in 2008, 2010 and 2011. Robinson, who came to Atlanta from Houston, didn't play in his first playoff game until 2010 and both of his losses have come with the Falcons.
Falcons K Matt Bryant hasn't been in the league as long as Gonzalez, but he has the same 0-5 postseason record. The 11-year veteran was the New York Giants kicker during the 2002 season when the Giants blew one of the biggest postseason leads in NFL history to San Francisco. Trailing 38-14 in the third quarter, the 49ers fought back to take a 39-38 fourth-quarter lead. With only seconds left in the game, Bryant lined up for a 40-yard game-winning field goal attempt that he never got to try. The snap from Trey Junkin to holder Matt Allen was low and Allen ended up throwing an incomplete pass.
Bryant, Gonzalez, White, Clabo and Robinson aren't the only players headed into the divisional round with zero playoff wins in their career. Broncos S Mike Adams is also on the list and Adams just might have the most depressing story of them all. Adams has played in the NFL since 2004 (130 career games), but has yet to play in a single postseason game in his career.
The Broncos' game on Saturday against the Ravens marks the nine-year veteran's first in the playoffs. Adams missed the postseason while spending his first eight years with the 49ers (2004-06) and Browns (2007-11).
"I'm looking forward to playing in rain, sleet, snow -- whatever it is," Adams told the Denver Post this week.
The seventh and final player looking to end his playoff drought this weekend is Patriots WR Brandon Lloyd. Lloyd has played in 128 career games but still has yet to taste playoff success. Lloyd was traded from Denver to St. Louis last October, then had to watch as Tim Tebow and the Broncos pulled off an improbable overtime playoff win over the Steelers in last year's wild-card round. Lloyd is 0-1 in his postseason career, with the loss coming as a member of the 2007 Redskins.
The bad news for our seven winless postseason players: With the Falcons, Patriots and Broncos not facing each other this weekend, there is a chance the postseason drought could continue for all of them.
For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our RSS Feed, watch Pro Football 360 daily at 3 p.m. ET and NFL newsletter. You can also follow Will Brinson @willbrinson, Ryan Wilson @ryanwilson_07 and Josh Katzowitz @joshkatzowitz.