NFL: Players That Deserve a Championship Before They Retire

Dan Marino is the most notable NFL player in history to finish his career without a single Super Bowl win. It’s always nice to see players win a championship in old age and then retire directly after. However, for some players, chances seem pretty slim that they get to ride into the sunset with a Super Bowl ring on their finger.

Larry Fitzgerald, WR Arizona Cardinals

Fitzgerald is entering his 16th season in the league and still has no Super Bowl rings. Despite an opportunity in 2008, the Cardinals did not capitalize. The last time Fitzgerald missed a regular season game was in 2014. He’s been the poster child of durability late in his career. Given the current state of the Cardinals organization, he likely won’t get a Super Bowl win unless he leaves. New head coach Kliff KIngsbury needs time to incorporate his offense and to develop newly drafted quarterback Kyler Murray. A Super Bowl is the furthest thing from his mind at the moment. Unfortunately, Fitzgerald may not have the gas left in the tank to make it to another Super Bowl with the Cardinals.

Philip Rivers, QB, Los Angeles Chargers

Rivers has been an elite NFL quarterback since he began starting games in 2006. Since then, he’s never missed a game and has started 219 consecutively (including playoffs). He’s an 8-time Pro Bowler. He has surpassed the 3500 yard mark every year but one; And he has eclipsed the 4000 yard threshold every year except for three.

Even in spite of that, the 37 year old quarterback has never even appeared in a Super Bowl. His team was well-equipped to do so this year after going 12-4 last year and losing in the Divisional Round to the New England Patriots. Rivers may be towards the end of his career but his team is still competitive as long as he can keep up and he may be able to help bring the Chargers the first Super Bowl in their history before he decides to hang up the cleats.

Justin Houston, LB, Indianapolis Colts

Houston has been one of the premire pass rushers in the NFL since his career started in 2011. He almost broke Michael Strahan’s sack record in 2014. But he has never won a Super Bowl in his career as a Kansas City Chief. He left the Chiefs this offseason and ended up bolstering the defense of another Super Bowl hopeful in the Colts. Age 30 is a dangerous age for pass rushers. He could start to lose his edge at ant time but it would be great to see him playing on the biggest stage in the NFL and hoisting a Lombardi as a fitting end to an illustrious career.

Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons

Jones has been a top 5 wide receiver in the NFL since he broke out in 2012. He appeared in Super Bowl 51 as a member of the Falcon but lost the game in overtime. Jones, 30, is a consistent pass catcher and one of the league’s most athletic players. The Falcons wide receiver boasts six Pro Bowls and has made four All-Pro teams (two first team, two second team.) He has also led the league in receiving yards twice in his career. He has been a valuable asset to a team that’s primed for a rebound this year after losing most quality defensive starters early on in the year. A Super Bowl win, which would be the team’s first ever, could be in the cards for the Falcons if they stay healthy and Jones would be able to add to his list of accolades.

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