Where the Streets Have No Gold: Cities Without a Championship, Part 1



In every major North American sport, there are those teams that just can’t bring a championship to their town. In the five major sports leagues that I looked at (NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, MLS), 55 franchises have yet to win the championship in their respective league. And out of those 56 teams, 21 U.S. States are represented along with the District of Columbia and Canada.

In this three-part blog, I will look at each sport and the teams that have not been crowned champs. In part 1, I’ll look at the NFL and MLB. Part 2 will look at the NBA and NHL. Then part 3 will look at the MLS and then an overall look at the cities and states represented.

Each section has a list of the franchises without a championship. This lists are made using these three standards: championship game/series appearances, playoff success, and franchise establishment.




The NFL has 13 teams that have yet to win a Super Bowl. Of those teams, four have yet to even reach the big game much less win the championship.

13. Buffalo Bills: Four Super Bowl appearances in 1991, 1992, 1993, and 1994.

12. Minnesota Vikings: Four Super Bowl appearances in 1970, 1974, 1975, and 1977.

11. Philadelphia Eagles: Two Super Bowl appearances in 1981 and 2005.

10. Cincinnati Bengals: Two Super Bowl appearances in 1982 and 1989.

9. Arizona Cardinals: One Super Bowl appearance in 2009.

8. Carolina Panthers: One Super Bowl appearance in 2004.

7. Tennessee Titans: One Super Bowl appearance in 2000.

6. Atlanta Falcons: One Super Bowl appearance in 1999.

5. San Diego Chargers: One Super Bowl appearance in 1995.

4. Houston Texans: Have never made it to the Super Bowl and were established in 2002.

3. Jacksonville Jaguars: Have never made it to the Super Bowl and were established in 1993.

2. Cleveland Browns: No Super Bowl appearances and were established in 1946, with a hiatus from 1996 to 1999.

1. Detroit Lions: No Super Bowl appearances in being established in 1930.

*The Bills and Vikings both made it to the Super Bowl four times but the Bills trips were more recent.

*The Eagles and Bengals both made two Super Bow appearances but the Eagles had one appearance in the last 10 years.

*The Cardinals, Panthers, Titans, Falcons, and Chargers were listed by the dates of their one appearance.

*The Texans were established most recently, followed by the Jaguars. And the Browns and Lions are both older franchises but the Lions were established earlier and the Browns did not play for three seasons.


of the New York Yankees of the Seattle Mariners on August 22, 2010 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.


In Major League Baseball, only eight out of thirty teams have yet to win a World Series Championship. This is by far the best ratio of the five major leagues. Out of the eight teams, only two have yet to even play in the championship series.

8. Texas Rangers: Won the AL Pennant and made it to the World Series in 2010 and 2011.

7. San Diego Padres: Two World Series appearances in 1984 and again in 1998.

6. Tampa Bay Rays: Established in 1998 and made a World Series appearance in 2008.

5. Colorado Rockies: Established in 1993 and appeared in the 2007 World Series.

4. Houston Astros: One World Series appearance in 2005 after beginning play in 1962.

3. Milwaukee Brewers: Established in 1969 and appeared in the 1982 World Series.

2. Seattle Mariners: No World Series appearances and established in 1977.

1. Washington Nationals: No World Series appearances and established in 1969. Played as the Montreal Expos until moving to Washington, D.C. in 2005.

*The Rangers World Series appearances were more recent than either of the Padres’ appearances.

*The Brewers, Astros, Rockies, and Rays were listed on dates of World Series appearances.

*The Nationals top the list because they were established eight years prior to the Mariners and did not take a hiatus when moving from Montreal to Washington, D.C.

Daryl Karpinski Jr.