The Atlanta Falcons’ claim to fame is the crushing

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The Atlanta Falcons’ claim to fame is the crushing

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FLOWERY BRANCH Shareef Miller Jersey , Ga. (AP)way they lost a Super Bowl. They’re hardly alone in these playoffs. Seven of the 12 teams still alive have never celebrated in the big game, matching the largest group of playoff-bound squads with not-so-Super pedigrees since the 1999 season. Will that lack of championship-winning experience prove costly? If you’re on a team that hasn’t won a ring, it’s only natural to just shrug it off as a meaningless anomaly. ”It’s right here, right now,” Falcons defensive end Adrian Clayborn said Thursday. ”What’s in the past doesn’t matter.” But there’s no denying that six-time champion Pittsburgh and five-time winner New England – the defending champ, as well – are the only true blue bloods in this field. The Falcons have lost both of their Super Bowl appearances, including last season’s 34-28 overtime defeat in which Tom Brady and the Patriots stunningly rallied from a 25-point deficit in the second half . The NFC’s top seed, the Philadelphia Eagles, is also 0-2 in the Super Bowl, as are the Carolina Panthers. Buffalo and Minnesota are the only franchises to lose four times in the big game without a title, and the Bills, of course Germaine Pratt Jersey , are the lone team to suffer that fate in four straight years. The Tennessee Titans (who began their existence as the Houston Oilers) came up short in their lone Super Bowl try. Jacksonville has never been to the title game at all . Jaguars owner Shad Khan said it’s good to have a bunch of teams chasing their first crown. He noted the huge demand for tickets in attendance-challenged Jacksonville, where the Jags are hosting the Bills in a matchup of teams that broke long playoff droughts this season. ”Could you imagine the hottest ticket in football is right here, selling for five, six times face value?” Khan said. ”Our cheapest ticket is 300 bucks, standing room. Could you believe that happening in freaking Jacksonville?” Kansas City, New Orleans and the Los Angeles Rams have only one title apiece, though the latter’s came during their two-decade-long stint in St. Louis. The Chiefs reached two of the first four Super Bowls, winning it all in 1970, but they haven’t been back since. The Saints won their lone Super Bowl appearance during the 2009 season. ”Once you get in, it’s wide open for anybody,” insisted Tennessee linebacker Brian Orakpo, a nine-year veteran who will play his first playoff game Saturday against the Chiefs. ”Yeah http://www.bengalsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-ryan-finley-jersey , the Patriots and Steelers have a lot of pedigree, a lot of tradition, and you’ve got some young up-and-comers like ourselves that are hungry.” Since the NFL went to a 12-team postseason format in 1990, the largest group of playoff teams without a Super Bowl title on their resume came 18 seasons ago. Kurt Warner and the high-flying Rams were among eight squads that had never won the championship until they held off Tennessee in the title game, memorably stopping the Titans’ final play at the 1-yard line. The only other times that the current playoff structure included as many as seven non-Super Bowl-winning teams were 2008 and 1996. When it comes to postseason neophytes, the Bills are drawing much of the attention after reaching the playoffs for the first time since 1999 , snapping the longest dry spell in any of the four major professional sports. But Buffalo it still known for that unprecedented four-year run of futility in the Super Bowl, which began in 1991 with Scott Norwood missing a potential game-winning field goal in the final seconds and was followed by three straight double-digit blowouts. ”It’s time to create some other memories of the Bills,” Thurman Thomas, the Hall of Fame running back on those Super Bowl-losing teams, told The Associated Press. ”It’s not the squad that went to the four straight Super Bowls. It’s somebody else.” The Vikings were the first franchise to lose four Super Bowls, accomplishing that ignominious feat in an eight-year span that ended in 1976. They haven’t gotten that far again Renell Wren Jersey , losing five times in the NFC championship game, most recently during the 2000 season. Coach Mike Zimmer said it’s important to take advantage of a season such as this, when the Vikings defied expectations by claiming a first-round bye behind a dominant defense journeyman quarterback Case Keenum . ”A lot of young guys come in and they expect it’s going to happen every single year,” Zimmer said. ”Really, you never know. The last time I won the Super Bowl was 1995 (as a Dallas assistant coach), so it’s been awhile.” Receiver Adam Thielen isn’t fretting over all those Super Bowls the Vikings lost so many years ago. He’s only concerned with the next one, which will be held at Minnesota’s home stadium. ”We’re not really focusing on what’s happened in the past,” Thielen said. ”Every year is a totally different situation: different team, different types of players. Honestly, for us, we just know that we have a lot of confidence in the way that we’re playing football.” — AP Sports Writers Teresa Walker in Nashville, Tennessee http://www.bengalsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-michael-jordan-jersey , Mark Long in Jacksonville, Florida, John Wawrow in Buffalo, New York, and Dave Campbell in Minneapolis contributed to this report. — ATLANTA (AP) — Changes are being considered on Atlanta’s offensive line after Matt Ryan was sacked six times in the latest of the Falcons‘ three straight losses.Coach Dan Quinn said Friday backup linemen Zane Beadles and Ty Sambrailo could have bigger roles as the Falcons try to find better protection for Ryan and improved run blocking.The Falcons (4-7) ran for only 26 yards on 16 carries in their 31-17 loss at the New Orleans Saints on Thursday night. Atlanta was eliminated from the NFC South race and would need a dramatic turnaround to revive its fading wild-card hopes.Ryan and wide receivers Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley lost fumbles in the red zone. Quinn said those turnovers and the play on the line of scrimmage were the “the two biggest factors in the game and that part of our game needs a lot of attention and focus.”“Obviously when you have a run game performance like we did, there’s a lot to look at and a lot that needs our attention because that was considerably below the line,” Quinn said. “That was also the big thing in pass protection.“To have the six sacks and have the run game that we did, that’s not going to get the job done.”The Falcons have lost starting guards Brandon Fusco and Andy Levitre to season-ending injuries. Quinn said replacement starters Wes Schweitzer and Ben Garland don’t deserve all the blame for the struggles against the Saints.“It was a little bit spread around,” Quinn said. “If it had just been one area we’d have tried to address it as quick as we could.”Beadles was signed on Oct. 30 and has worked at tackle and guard in practice the last two weeks. Sambrailo has been the team’s swing tackle.Quinn said he and offensive line coach Chris Morgan have discussed options on the line.“We’ll revisit it again on Monday,” Quinn said. “I’m certainly not pleased with the results of where we were yesterday, but I haven’t made a final decision of who or what or if there are going to be changes. It’s definitely something we’re looking at to try and make sure we’re playing at our best.”Ryan also threw an interception.“I thought we did some good things offensively, but when you turn the football over four times against a really good football team that’s playing with a lot of momentum Greedy Williams Jersey , that’s too much to overcome,” Ryan said after the game. “We need to be better than that as we move forward. We’ve got an extended weekend here to get some rest, but also to take a look in the mirror and find ways that we can all be better and that’s what we need to do.”The team’s dire playoff outlook won’t affect plans to have linebacker Deion Jones play when he is available.Jones came off injured reserve last week after missing two months with a broken right foot. He was inactive against Dallas last Sunday and again was held out against the Saints in what Quinn described as a close call.The Falcons will try again to have Jones active on Dec. 2 against Baltimore.“I’m hopeful that we’ll have him in the lineup,” Quinn said. “I know he was very close. The fact I think he is that close, that he’s ready to help us win, I think he’ll be out there.”Freeman also still has a chance to return for the final two regular-season games.The Falcons also have lost both starting safeties for the season.