The last time Demaryius Thomas missed the playoffs, he was a fresh-faced rookie still learning the ropes in the NFL. Thomas may still have a baby face by many people’s standards, but six years after that first season in Denver, he’s finally experiencing what it’s like to miss the playoffs again.

“It’s my first time since my first year having to really deal with it. It’s the first year knowing we’re not going to be in the playoffs. It’s a little different. I’m not used to it around here,” Thomas told reporters on Thursday ahead of Sunday’s season finale with the Oakland Raiders. A loss to Kansas City on Christmas ended Denver’s playoff hopes, just one season removed from winning a Super Bowl title.

While the Denver offense struggled through much of the season – the team has scored 10 or less points in three consecutive losses heading into Sunday’s game – Thomas again surpassed the 1,000-yard mark and is just four catches shy of 90 for the season. Even though his team will be resting and recovering in January, Thomas still looks at certain parts of his 2016 season as a success.

“It’s probably one of the best years I’ve had from being healthy, blocking and running routes,” Thomas said. “I’d say it was one of the best years I’ve had [in my career] career. The numbers might not say it, but if I go back and watch film and if guys go back and watch film, guys would probably say the same thing.”

Both Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark this season, but they have combined for just 10 touchdowns this year – five apiece. For Sanders, who spent the first four years of his career in Pittsburgh and went to the playoffs twice, it is the first time he will miss the playoffs as a member of the Broncos.

For more than two-dozen other Broncos, it will be the first times in their NFL careers their team has not participated in postseason play. Here’s a rundown of the Denver Broncos who have never experienced a January without postseason play, ordered by their tenure in the league.

Sixth-Year Players

TE Virgil Green
OLB Von Miller

Fifth-Year Players

DE Derek Wolfe
CB Chris Harris

Fourth-Year Players

RB C.J. Anderson
CB Kayvon Webster
NT Sylvester Williams

Third-Year Players

RB Kapri Bibbs
ILB Todd Davis
WR Cody Latimer
K Brandon McManus1
ILB Corey Nelson
CB Bradley Roby
OL Michael Schofield
RB Juwan Thompson

Second-Year Players

TE A.J. Derby2
CB Lorenzo Doss
WR Bennie Fowler3
G Max Garcia
TE Jeff Heuerman4
CB Taurean Nixon
Matt Paradis5
OLB Shane Ray
OL Ty Sambrailo6
QB Trevor Siemian


1 McManus was waived by the Colts prior to the 2013 season before signing with the Giants and being traded to the Broncos in 2014.

Derby was on New England’s injured reserve list for the 2015 playoffs.

Fowler spent the 2014 season on Denver’s practice squad.

Heuerman was on Denver’s injured reserve list for the 2015 playoffs.

5 Paradis spent the 2014 season on Denver’s practice squad.

Sambrailo was on Denver’s injured reserve list for the 2015 playoffs.