Chad Clifton
refer to caption
Clifton with the Packers in 2011
No. 76
Position:Offensive tackle
Personal information
Born: (1976-06-26) June 26, 1976 (age 46)
Martin, Tennessee, U.S.
Height:6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Weight:320 lb (145 kg)
Career information
High school:Martin (TN) Westview
NFL Draft:2000 / Round: 2 / Pick: 44
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played:165
Games started:160
Player stats at · PFR

Jeffrey Chad Clifton (born June 26, 1976) is a former American football offensive tackle who played in the National Football League (NFL) for 12 seasons with the Green Bay Packers. He played college football at the University of Tennessee and was selected by the Packers in the second round of the 2000 NFL Draft. During his career, he was named to two Pro Bowls and was part of the team that won a Super Bowl title in Super Bowl XLV.

Early years

Clifton was born in Martin, Tennessee. At Westview High School in Martin, Clifton was an all-around athlete. He lettered four times in football, starting his last three seasons as a two-way player. In addition to football, he was on the basketball team for three years. Throughout his high school years, Clifton played on the defensive tackle position and on tight end as a sophomore and offensive tackle in his junior and senior years. As a senior, he was named an All-American by Parade and Scholastic Coach magazines and received the Gatorade Circle of Champions "Player of the Year" award and Tennessee Class 2A Mr. Football lineman award.[1] Clifton's team lost in the state playoffs in his junior and senior years to Briarcrest Christian School in Memphis, Tennessee, whose offensive coordinator was former Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze.

College career

In 1995, Clifton enrolled at the University of Tennessee and redshirted his first year. From then on, he was a fixture on the offensive line. He started one season at the right tackle position and three at the left tackle position.[2] During these four years, the Tennessee Volunteers enjoyed great success with a 43-7 record and a win in the Fiesta Bowl over Florida State following the 1998 regular season to claim the National Championship. Clifton was a two-time All-Southeastern Conference selection (1997 second-team, 1998 first-team) and a Sporting News second-team All-American as a senior.[1]

Professional career

Green Bay Packers

Clifton with the Packers in 2006
Clifton with the Packers in 2006

During the 2000 NFL Draft, the Packers selected Clifton in the second round with the 44th overall pick.

Halfway through his rookie season, Clifton took over the starting left tackle position and would remain there for the rest of the season. He enjoyed continued success during his second season when he established a reputation as one of the NFL's best and unheralded blindside blockers for Brett Favre.

Clifton's 2002 season seemed as promising as his first two. However, on November 24, he suffered a severe pelvic injury after receiving a blindside hit from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Warren Sapp. Because the incident occurred after an interception with Clifton far from the play, Sapp received harsh criticism for his action. After the game, when Packers head coach Mike Sherman told Sapp that his play was uncalled for, Sapp began angrily shouting at Sherman in a tirade that was caught on camera, with Sapp famously screaming "put a jersey on". For his part, Sapp did not visit or telephone Clifton during his four day stay in a Tampa Bay hospital. As a result of his injury, Clifton missed the rest of the season, was hospitalized for almost a week, and could not walk unaided for five more weeks. In 2005, the NFL Competition Committee agreed on new guidelines for "unnecessary roughness", making hits such as that suffered by Clifton illegal.[3]

Clifton returned in 2003 to start all 16 regular season games and two more games in the playoffs. He played all 1,031 offensive snaps that season and contributed to establishing a team record for fewest sacks allowed in a season with 19.

On January 23, 2008, it was announced that he would replace Seattle Seahawks tackle Walter Jones in the 2008 Pro Bowl, which was his first career Pro Bowl. He went to Hawaii to the Pro Bowl with teammates wide receiver Donald Driver, defensive end Aaron Kampman, and cornerback Al Harris, as well as head coach Mike McCarthy. Clifton's quarterback, Brett Favre, was scheduled to be in the Pro Bowl, but was replaced by Jeff Garcia.[4]

On March 5, 2010, the Packers re-signed Clifton to a three-year, $20 million contract, with $7.5 million guaranteed.

At the end of the 2010 season, Clifton and the Packers appeared in Super Bowl XLV. He was a starter in the 31–25 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.[5]

Clifton had a successful season in 2010, which culminated in his second career Pro Bowl nomination.

On April 23, 2012, Clifton was released by the Packers after failing a physical.

Clifton did not sign with another NFL team after his release.


  1. ^ a b "Chad Clifton". Green Bay Packers. Archived from the original on August 18, 2017. Retrieved July 18, 2011.
  2. ^ "Chad Clifton". Tennessee Volunteers. Archived from the original on January 24, 2001. Retrieved November 18, 2016.
  3. ^ "NFL to vote to end 'unsuspecting' blind-side hits". March 15, 2005.
  4. ^ "Garcia, Schobel, Dockett, Cole, Albright added as injury replacements". ESPN. January 24, 2008. Retrieved December 28, 2010.
  5. ^ "Super Bowl XLV - Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Green Bay Packers - February 6th, 2011". Retrieved December 15, 2017.