March 26th, 2013 |
Former NFL quarterback John Roach is celebrating his 80th birthday today. Roach played seven seasons for the Chicago/St. Louis Cardinals, Green Bay Packers, and Dallas Cowboys. He was a member of NFL Championship teams with the Packers in 1961 and 1962.
Roach appeared on two football cards, both in 1961, but with different teams. His 1961 Topps card pictures him with the Cardinals, but he was traded before the 1961 season first to the Cleveland Browns, then to the Packers, and he ended up on a 1961 Lake to Lake Packers card, as well. Both of his cards are pictured below.
According to OldestLivingProFootball.com, Roach is the 496th oldest former professional American football player.
Happy birthday, Mr. Roach!
March 23rd, 2013 |
Former NFL defensive end Roy Hilton is celebrating his 70th birthday today. Hilton played from 1965 to 1975 for the Baltimore Colts, New York Giants, and Atlanta Falcons. He was a member of the Colts teams that played in Super Bowls III and V. He got 1 1/2 sacks in Super Bowl V, which the Colts won 16-13 against the Dallas Cowboys.
Hilton is shown here on his rookie card, a 1969 Topps. He appeared on a few more cards, as well.
Happy birthday, Mr. Hilton!
March 23rd, 2013 |
error cards, Player Deaths
Harlon Hill, a receiver from 1954 to 1962 for the Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions, and Pittsburgh Steelers, passed away on March 21. Hill won the Newspaper Enterprise Association NFL MVP Award in 1955, and he is still the Bears’ second-leading all-time receiver. (Johnny Morris is first.) See whnt.com for a nice video tribute to Hill.
Hill played college football at Florence State Teachers College, now named the University of North Alabama. His quarterback for two seasons was George Lindsey, who became famous as Goober Pyle on the Andy Griffith Show. In 1986, the trophy for the Division II College Football Player of the Year was named after Hill.
The cards pictured here are Hill’s rookie card, a 1955 Bowman, and his 1956 Topps card. (The 1956 card is an uncorrected error card: Topps misspelled his first name “Harlan.”) He appeared on at least seven more football cards, as well.
March 21st, 2013 |
John Henderson, a wide receiver from 1965 to 1972 for the Detroit Lions and Minnesota Vikings, is celebrating his 70th birthday today. Henderson’s best seasons were 1969 and 1970, when he gained over 500 yards each season. He was the leading receiver in Super Bowl IV, with 7 receptions for 111 yards. It wasn’t enough: the Vikings lost to the Kansas City Chiefs, 23-7.
Though he played for eight seasons, I don’t believe that Henderson appeared on any standard football cards during his NFL career. He did, however, appear on a 1972 Sunoco Stamp, pictured here.
Happy birthday, Mr. Henderson!
March 19th, 2013 |
Interactive Team Cards, Interesting eBay Auctions, New in the Gallery | 4 Comments
In a recent Interesting eBay Auctions article, I pointed out a 1957 Baltimore Colts team photo, and I said that the image was reused a year later on the 1958 Topps Colts team card. This week, using the photo as a reference, I made an interactive version of that team card. On the interactive card, you can move your cursor over the players to see their names, and you can click on a player to see all of his cards in the Vintage Football Card Gallery. Give it a try!
As I was mapping the names on the photo to the image on the card, I found that a lot of the players didn’t appear on the team’s 1957 roster. I concluded that the photo must have been taken well before the 1957 regular season started. The Colts picked up several of the players in the photo in the 1957 draft, but apparently some of them did not make the team. One of the 1957 draftees who appears in the photo but not on the roster is Joe Unitas, Johnny Unitas’s cousin.
I was unable to find the first names of three of the players in the photo: Welch, Stephenson, and Pollard. The Colts didn’t draft them in 1957, and I couldn’t find matches in the online NFL player databases. My guess is that the players were walk-ons whom the Colts gave tryouts. If you happen to know any of their first names, let me know, and I’ll add them to the interactive card.
March 18th, 2013 |
Dave Osborn, longtime running back for the Minnesota Vikings, is celebrating his 70th birthday today. Osborn played for the Vikings from 1965 to 1975, and he finished his career with the Green Bay Packers in 1976. His best season was 1967, when he gained a total of 1244 yards rushing and receiving. Osborn was a member of the Vikings teams that played in Super Bowls IV, XIII, and IV. He scored the team’s only touchdown against the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl IV.
Osborn played college football at the University of North Dakota. He was elected to the University of North Dakota Letterwinners Association Hall of Fame in 1977.
Osborn is pictured here on his 1970 Topps Super Glossy football card. He appeared on dozen more cards and stamps, as well.
Happy birthday, Mr. Osborn!
March 17th, 2013 |
Two players in the Vintage Football Card Gallery are celebrating milestone birthdays today: Tom Bettis is 80, and Chuck Muncie is 60.
Tom Bettis played linebacker from 1955 to 1963 for the Green Bay Packers, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Chicago Bears. He was a member of two NFL Championship teams, the 1961 Packers and the 1963 Bears. After his playing career, Bettis held numerous coaching positions in the NFL, including a stint as interim head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs in 1977. There is a nice summary of Bettis’s career at InstantNewsKaty.com.
According to oldestlivingprofootball.com, Bettis is the 495th oldest living professional football player. He is pictured here on his 1963 Topps card, one of the short prints in the set. He also appeared on a two cards with the Packers.
Chuck Muncie was a running back from 1976 to 1984 for the New Orleans Saints and San Diego Chargers. Muncie gained over 1000 yards twice, in 1979 and 1981, and in 1981 he led the NFL with 19 touchdowns. Before his pro career, Muncie starred at the University of California, finishing second in voting for the Heisman in 1975. (See my page of football cards of Heisman Trophy candidates.)
After football, Muncie founded a youth foundation in California. He is pictured here on his 1978 Topps football card.
Happy birthday, Messrs. Bettis and Muncie!
March 15th, 2013 |
New in the Gallery | 1 Comment
Yesterday, via an eBay purchase, I obtained another card that will help me figure out how 1962 Topps football cards were arranged on uncut sheets. The John Unitas card shown here has a sliver of Bill Forester’s card on the left. This bit of information let me add the Unitas to a piece of the uncut sheet I already had. To see where the new piece fit, scroll toward the bottom of the 1962 Topps virtual uncut sheet page of the Vintage Football Card Gallery. Another ten years, and I should have it finished!
For other virtual uncut sheets, some completed and some not, see a previous article, U is for Uncut Sheets.
March 11th, 2013 |
Brothers, Fathers and Sons, New in the Gallery
As I wrote in a previous article, I am converting some of my more popular blog articles into standard web pages and moving them to the Vintage Football Card Gallery. I am finding that blog articles work best for news, and standard pages work better for information that is not time-sensitive.
This weekend I converted my Fathers and Sons and Teammate Brothers blog articles into gallery pages. In the process, I added a few fathers, sons, and brothers who are new to the Gallery since I wrote the original articles. The new pages are in the Fun Pages section of the Gallery home page. While you’re over there, check out the other pages to see if you’ve missed any new ones.
What is your favorite father/son or brother/brother football card pair? Here’s mine: George Sauer Sr. on his 1955 Topps All-American card, and George Sauer Jr. on his 1969 Glendale Stamp. There’s quite a resemblance, don’t you think?
March 10th, 2013 |
George Saimes, who played defensive back from 1963 to 1972 for the Buffalo Bills and Denver Broncos, passed away on March 8. There is a tribute to Saimes on the Buffalo Bills web site. Saimes was an AFL All-Star five times, and he played on Buffalo’s 1964 and 1965 AFL championship teams. He was elected to the Bills Wall of Fame in 2000.
Before his pro career, Saimes starred at both fullback and defensive back at Michigan State. In 1962 he finished seventh in voting for the Heisman Trophy. He was inducted into the MSU Athletics Hall of Fame in 2000.
Saimes is pictured here on his rookie card, a 1964 Topps. He appeared on numerous other cards and stamps, as well.
March 8th, 2013 |
Halls of Fame
Earlier this week, the National Football Foundation announced the names of the 2013 Football Bowl Subdivision candidates for the College Football Hall of Fame. Eleven of the 82 players and coaches on the ballot appear on cards in the Vintage Football Card Gallery. (One of them appears on someone else’s card, however.) Here are the eleven in the Gallery:
Bob Berry, Quarterback, Oregon. Berry had a long NFL career with the Vikings and Falcons. He is shown here on his 1972 Topps card.
John Didion, center, Oregon State. Didion played six seasons for the New Orleans Saints. This is his 1974 Topps card.
Charlie Gogolak, kicker, Princeton. Gogolak played six seasons for the Washington Redskins and Boston/New England Patriots. In 1966, he set a record for most extra points attempted in a game, with 10. (He made 9 of them.) He is shown here on his rookie card, a 1967 Philadelphia. Gogolak’s brother, Pete, also played in the NFL.
Rob Lytle, running back, Michigan. Lytle played seven seasons for the Denver Broncos. This is his rookie card, a 1978 Topps. Lytle finished third in voting for the Heisman Trophy in 1976, so he also appears on my page of cards of Heisman Trophy candidates.
Paul Naumoff, linebacker, Tennessee. Naumoff had a 12-year NFL career with the Detroit Lions. He is pictured here on his 1973 Topps card.
Tom Nowatzke, linebacker, Indiana. Nowatzke played eight seasons for the Detroit Lions and Baltimore Colts. This is his 1969 Topps football card.
Phil Olsen, defensive end, Utah State. Olsen played six seasons for the Los Angeles Rams and Denver Broncos. One of his teammates with the Rams was his brother, Merlin. (See my Teammate Brothers article.) Olsen is shown here on his 1973 Topps football card.
Jim Otis, fullback, Ohio State. Otis played nine seasons for the New Orleans Saints, Kansas City Chiefs, and St. Louis Cardinals. His 1976 Buckmans Disc is pictured here. Otis also appears on my page of cards of Heisman Trophy candidates.
Don Trull, quarterback, Baylor. Trull played six seasons for the AFL’s Houston Oilers and Boston Patriots, and two seasons for the CFL’s Edmonton Eskimos. He is shown here on his 1971 O-Pee-Chee CFL card. Trull also appears on my page of cards of Heisman Trophy candidates.
Clancy Williams, running back, Washington State. Though Williams was a running back in college, as a pro he played defensive back. He played his whole eight-year NFL career with the Los Angeles Rams. Williams’s son, Clarence, also played a season in the NFL. The elder Williams is shown here on his only card, a 1967 Philadelphia.
Darryl Rogers, coach, several schools. Rogers never played in a regular season game as a pro, but he did coach the Detroit Lions from 1985 to 1988. Apparently, he also tried out with the Denver Broncos in the early 1960s, because his picture ended up on Goose Gonsoulin’s 1961 Fleer card. For more cards that picture the wrong player, see the Mistaken Identities page of the Vintage Football Card Gallery.
You can see all 82 of the 2013 Football Bowl Subdivision candidates on the National Football Foundation web site.
March 7th, 2013 |
Milestone Birthdays | 2 Comments
Longtime San Diego Charger Rick Redman is celebrating his 70th birthday today. Redman played linebacker for the Chargers from 1965 to 1973, and he was also the team’s punter for his first three seasons. He made the AFL Western Division All-Star team after the 1967 season.
Before his pro career, Redman starred for the University of Washington. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1995.
Redman is pictured here on his 1970 Topps football card. He appeared on several other cards, also. Unfortunately, one of them, his 1965 Topps rookie card, actually pictures Larry Elkins. You can see that card and others that picture the wrong player on my Mistaken Identities page.
Happy birthday, Mr. Redman!
March 6th, 2013 |
Tony Lorick, a running back from 1964 to 1969 for the Baltimore Colts and New Orleans Saints, passed away on February 17. His obituary and a recent photo appear at grimesfuneralchapels.com. Lorick was a steady contributor with the Colts and Saints: he gained over 600 yards from scrimmage in four of his first five seasons. Before his pro career, Lorick starred at Arizona State University. He was inducted into the ASU Athletics Hall of Fame in 1983.
Lorick is shown here on his 1969 Glendale Stamp. He also appeared on several football cards and a 1969 Saints Doubloon.
March 5th, 2013 |
Milestone Birthdays | 1 Comment
Three players in the Vintage Football Card Gallery are celebrating milestone birthdays today: Tom Louderback is 80, Joe Scarpati is 70, and Horace King is 60.
Tom Louderback played linebacker from 1958 to 1962 for the Philadelphia Eagles, Oakland Raiders, and Buffalo Bills. Prior to that, he played one season in Canada for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. There is a nice article about Louderback’s career, in his own words, on the Tales from the American Football League web site.
According to oldestlivingprofootball.com, Louderback is the 494th oldest living professional football player. He appeared on one football card, the 1962 Fleer card pictured here.
Joe Scarpati was a defensive back from 1964 to 1970 for the Philadelphia Eagles and New Orleans Saints. In 1966, Scarpati led the NFL with 182 interception return yards, on eight interceptions. I learned today that he was also the holder for Tom Dempsey’s record 63-yard field goal in 1970. Scarpati appeared on at least six football cards and stamps. His rookie card, a 1967 Philadelphia, is pictured here.
Horace King was a running back from 1975 to 1983 for the Detroit Lions. King’s best season was 1978, when he gained 1056 total yards rushing and receiving. Prior to his pro career, King was one of the University of Georgia’s first African-American football players. He is pictured here on his rookie card, a 1978 Topps.
Happy birthday, Messrs. Louderback, Scarpati, and King!
March 4th, 2013 |
Former NFL defensive back Doug Plank is celebrating his 60th birthday today. Plank played from 1975 to 1982 for the Chicago Bears. Since 2001, Plank has coached in the Arena Football League, and in late 2012 he was named the head coach of the Orlando Predators. There is a video of the announcement and a summary of his career on the Predators web site.
Plank is pictured here on the green-bordered variation of his 1976 Coke Bears disc. He also appears on several other cards in the Vintage Football Card Gallery.
Happy birthday, Coach Plank!