All posts by Lee Bolton

Newsome, Ozzie

Cards: Score 1990, Proset 1990.
Acquired: TTM 2010. c/o The Baltimore Ravens
Sent: 1/13/2010  Received 2/11/2010  (29 days)

Ozzie Newsome and the Browns during the late 80’s began to have a more and more contentious relationship with Houston. While the Browns would claim that the Steelers were their true rivals, the Oilers snuck up on them starting in ’88, and under Glanville the two teams (and in fact the whole division for that matter) ignited a hated rivalry.  The Oilers and Browns would face up in the finale of 1988 and lose at Cleveland 28-23, then somehow hold on to win in Cleveland the next week in wildcard weekend 28-23.

Newsome would always manage to keep his streak alive and ended up notching 150 straight games with a catch and retired at the end of 1990 after 13 seasons with the Browns. He was inducted into the HOF in 1999. Newsome moved with the Modell franchise to Baltimore where he has become an extremely successful general manager and the first black GM in the NFL for the Ravens.

Games 198              Rec 668               Yds 7980              Avg 12.1          TD 47

Largent, Steve

Cards: Score 1989, Action Packed 1990.
Acquired: In Person 1993, CAC conference, Austin, Tx.
See Also: Steve Largent (2)

Josh and I got wind of a Christian Athletes for Christ conference at a hotel in Austin where Largent was the keynote speaker. We went into the hotel and cased the joint like professional paparazzi and then found a spot out of the way but near the event banquet that we could stake out. It was probably the most boring hour and a half we spent in our lives sitting out there, but once the doors kicked open to the hall and people started leaving, Josh and I bum rushed the entrance towards the podium. You could almost put a camera above us as we went into that room full of circular tables with us dodging around them and the people up to the front. I would swear that Largent looked at us both dumbfounded, but to our glee he autographed both of my cards and Josh’s as well. I realized that at this time after that happened, I had passed up Josh in my obsession with the hobby, as I was ecstatic to add such a player of prestige to my collection and he was just… okay.

Steve Largent was originally a 4th round choice of the Houston Oilers in 1976 who found himself traded to the expansion Seattle Seahawks for an 8th round draft choice.  Largent was neither the fastest or biggest receiver in the league but he made up for it with great hands and precision route running.  After retiring in 1989 Largent held many of the league records including career receptions, yards, touchdowns and consecutive games with a catch. A 7 time Pro-bowler, and member of the 1980’s decade team, Steve was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame 1995.  He then began his career in politics serving the State of Oklahoma and then moving onto Congress representing the 1st district.

Games  200        Rec  819          Yds  13,039         Avg  16.0              TD  100

Blake, Ricky

Cards: Ultimate WLAF 1991, Proset World League 1991.
Acquired: In Person, Dallas Cowboys Training Camp 1992.

Ricky Blake was an All-Pro WLAF Prospect when he made the jump from the San Antonio Riders to the Dallas Cowboys in the NFL after he ranked third in the league with 554 yards. A bruising fullback with deceptive speed Blake was not drafted out of Alabama A&M. Instead he did some time in the CFL and then took a year off before being drafted by San Antonio.  (Ricky also wore one of the WLAF’s experimental helmet cameras against the London Monarchs that year.) Blake made the transition to the NFL shortly thereafter being signed by the Dallas Cowboys where I got his autograph that next year in 1992, signing with his Dallas #(46).  (It is commonly mistaken that he returned to the Riders in 1992 but Ivory Lee Brown had taken over for him in SA.) Ricky started out with a bang in ’91, then was injured after 2 games on a long run against Phoenix and never played again for the Cowboys, sustaining a hip pointer much like the one that ended Bo Jackson’s career.

Blake however would return to play for the Fort Worth Arena league team in 1994, notching 12 yards on 4 carries and one tackle that year.  Later then he was picked up by the Barcelona Dragons of the newly reconstituted NLFE in 1995, playing for one season, rushing for 398 yards on 98 carries before retiring.

WLAF Games  10     Att   120         Yds   554        Avg     4.6            TD  5
Rec 16      Yds 107       Avg 6.7      Lg 24      Td 1