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US Sports

20th Nov 2014

An NFL player could play in his 25th consecutive defeat tonight

Say a prayer for Antonio Smith tonight before you go to bed

Sean Nolan

How hard would it be to stay motivated?

American sport has, at least in our opinion, a very healthy interest in recording every minutiae of their games. From yards covered to bases stolen, nothing is uncounted these days. Sadly, that also includes defeats and tonight in Oakland a very sad, but significant milestone will more than likely be reached by one player.

Despite being a 10year veteran of the NFL, you can be forgiven for not knowing a whole lot about Oakland defensive tackle Antonio Smith. Smith has had a decent career with the Cardinals, Texans and, from this year, the Raiders, with 149 games under his belt and 42.5 career sacks.

Tonight, Smith will face the 7-3 Kansas City Chiefs and if the Raiders lose (they are 7.5 point underdogs with Ladbrokes) it will be the 25th consecutive defeat for Smith.

The last time he experienced a winning feeling was on September 15 2013, when he lined out for the Texans win over the Titans, in OT. Smith then played 14 of the next 15 games the Texans played, losing all of them.

He then moved to the Raiders in the off season, and Oakland have lost all 10 games of the 2014 season, meaning in his 150th game tonight, Smith faces his 25th consecutive loss.

The record losing streak for a team in the NFL is the 1976-77 Buccaneers, who lost 26 on the bounce.

Hat-tip to the folks on the Grantland NFL podcast for highlighting this nugget.