Top 20 Places Careers Go To Die

We all know those clubs around the sporting world that are nothing more than glorified morgues. Promising young talent goes through the front door every off-season, only to come out zombies around the back and no one has an explanation about how or why this continues. But somehow history keeps repeating itself and these poor kids coming through the draft or transfer period keep making the same awful decision.

These graveyards never intend to be this haunting. Despite numerous turnovers of backroom staff and playing stocks, the performance levels are diabolical season in, season out. When the opportunity presents itself to turn over a new leaf to begin a period of rejuvenation, everyone drops the ball to develop a winning culture. Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger believes confidence in athletes is the hardest thing to foster and the easiest thing to lose. On the evidence of these clubs that looks a feasible theory.

Whether it’s the Browns, Lions or Jaguars in the NFL, Newcastle, Aston Villa or Sunderland in the EPL, or any other franchise with a history of screw-ups, the hall of horrors is a stain on their respective leagues. Particularly in America where the notion of equality underpins the very essence of an even playing field, these sides that drag the chain undermine the whole operation. If you’re only as strong as your weakest link then so help these sports organizations.

The good news is sports move in cycles. Some last longer than others, but even the Knicks and Villa had their glory years to look back on fondly. Those that are chasing the dream without ever getting a taste are the saddest of all and something that has to be rectified immediately. These are the top 20 places where careers go to die.

20 Detroit Lions

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

19 Tampa Bay Rays

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

18 Chicago Bears

Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

17 Aston Villa


16 Florida Panthers

Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

15 Philadelphia 76ers

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

14 Newcastle United


13 Memphis Grizzlies

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

12 Philadelphia Union

Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

11 Jacksonville Jaguars

Logan Bowles-USA TODAY Sports

10 Queens Park Rangers


9 Milwaukee Brewers

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

8 Toronto FC

Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

7 Leeds United


6 Cleveland Browns

John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

5 Sunderland AFC


4 Charlotte Hornets

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

3 San Diego Padres

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

2 Getafe FC


1 New York Knicks

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

The crème de la crème of sporting graveyards. The Knicks are box office for attraction, the city sells itself and with Phil Jackson and Carmelo Anthony on board they’re starting to build something. But we’ve been here before right? Since their iconic team of the 1970s, the team has had to put up with a lot of garbage for a boutique franchise expecting a lot better. Whether their careers died on the spot or went on to succeed elsewhere, the list is long and embarrassing. Luc Longley, , Clarence Weatherspoon, Renaldo Balkman, Steve Francis, Malik Rose, Eddy Curry, Shandon Anderson and Jerome James – Madison Square Garden was never for them.

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Top 20 Places Careers Go To Die