Category Archives: CFL

Fernandez, Mervyn ‘Swervin’ (2)

Cards: Action Packed 1990, Score Supplemental 1989, Topps 1990 1,000 yard club, ProSet 1989
Acquired: TTM 2017, C/o Home
Sent: 1/23     Received: 4/14   (83 days)
See Also: ‘Swervin’ Mervyn Fernandez

Ah, Mervyn Fernandez, such an underrated receiver. After proving his worth in the CFL for the BC Lions, Fernandez showed up to the NFL in 1987.  A shrewd selection by Al Davis in the loaded 1983 draft, Fernandez was picked by the Raiders in the 10th round.  After a few years with the Raiders, he returned to the BC Lions to finish out his career in 1994.  Always well remembered by the CFL, he’s received numerous accolades from the league since retirement.

Fernandez has some great cards. His Score 1989 Supplemental is really nice. The color on this card is outstanding, even without adjustment.  The Action Packed 1990 card was a really solid shot of Mervyn. It’s a dynamic action shot of him although the framing was typical of most cards of that era with the color framing in gold.  The ProSet 1989 was really the card set that blew the doors off of Topps stranglehold on the market. It’s a great card through and through however it suffers from the offset cutting issues that plagued ProSet throughout most of its print cycle. Topps inserted a nice glossy 1000 yard club card at the top of every pack which all had solid action shots of their players. After I ran out of Action Packed cards to buy at the 7-11 everyday after school, I’d slowly soak in the Topps cards. Mervyn’s autograph certainly stuck out nicely on this canvas.

Humphery, Bobby (2)

Cards: Topps 1985, Topps 1987, Pro Set WLAF 1991 Update
Acquired: TTM 2017, C/o Home
Sent:  5/31   Received:  6/14  (15 days)
See Also: Bobby Humphery

Bobby Humphery was an enforcer for the San Antonio Riders during their 1992 season. Selected in the 11th round of the WLAF draft, he really provided veteran leadership to the young defensive backs. The Riders pass defense was ranked first in the league that year, and they were one of the few teams that could go toe to toe with the eventual World League Champion Sacramento Surge and a key reason for that was Bobby.

It was a shame that Pro Set pulled the plug on their WLAF set for the 1992 season. While Ultimate and Wild Card filled the vacancy as best as they could peppering  their sets with veterans and rookies, for some reason they both omitted the highly decorated Humphery.  I had to look hard to find any photography of Hump from his days in the WLAF.

Apparently he noticed that too, so when Bobby received the custom card I created he wrote me an extremely nice thank-you note.

Thank you Lee, for the Rider cards. I always wanted these cards but I could never find them. I will honor these.” – Bobby Humphery

The custom WLAF 1991 entry that I made of him was based off of a Gameday Magazine I had from that 1992 that was sold during the season finale. In the team notes, frequently they’d have a photo or small blurb about a player who has really made a difference on the team. The last one had this grainy black and white shot of Bobby. Although I have found other images on the web, I have not been able to find a suitable enough image, so I decided to go ahead and work with this image in Photoshop.  It came out decently enough for a colorized and fuzz adjusted image.  While I wasn’t entirely happy with my printer, it was satisfactory enough that I thought Bobby would appreciate it.  He also included a signed copy of his Topps 1985 rookie card as well as thanks for the additional copies of the Riders cards I gave him.

Among Bobby’s greatest NFL accomplishments is that he led the NFL in 1984 with 22 kick returns for 675 yards and a 97 yard touchdown. He also had 8 kick returns for 234 yards and a touchdown against the Bengals during the season finale in 1986.

Skansi, Paul


Cards: Score 1991, Action Packed 1990, Topps 1990
Acquired: TTM 2017, C/o Home
Sent:  3/20    Received: 3/30   (10 days)

Paul Skansi is an interesting figure in the history of Seahawks football. I always viewed him as an important participant and observer in the growth of the sport that always seemed to fly under the radar. Skansi is a member of Seahawks- or as I knew them- the pink clad Seattle Knights of Tecmo Bowl. He then returned to play in Tecmo Super Bowl as well. In the midst of this, as the great card rush occurred during the late 80s and 90s, Skansi had numerous football cards of him produced. Now as a key role player for the team, it was surprising that Topps, Score, and even Action Packed produced cards of the tenacious receiver- but ProSet (the biggest card set of the market) did not.  I remember him in that first pack of Action Packed I ever opened, because his name is so unique.

Paul, with his impressive hands and fearless and precise route running, was quite the find for the Seahawks. A local product from the University of Washington, he was a Steve Pelluer favorite. He helped the Huskies win an improbable and exciting Apple Cup with his circus TD catch in 1981. He’d conclude his career at the college with 161 receptions – which still ranks 5th all time on the school’s record books.

Originally a 5th round pick of the Steelers in 1983, he found himself on his hometown Seahawks by 1984. There he became a valued and fearless slot man that was counted on for numerous first downs to keep the chains moving. While he was always overshadowed by the likes of Brian Blades and Steve Largent, Skansi worked best in 3rd down situations.  Initially he also saw time on punt return duties as well. He’d play the next 7 seasons in Seattle, and then briefly try his hand in the CFL with the Ottawa Rough Riders  in 1992.  Skansi’s shining moment came in a thrilling matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs in 1990. As Derrick Thomas played havoc with the Seahawks offensive line all day, Seattle’s offense hung around. In the closing moments trailing 16-10, quarterback Dave Kreig threw a bullet over the middle for 25 yards to Paul for the winning TD.

Paul since his playing days has done a lot of coaching and scouting. After coaching his way through the college ranks, Skansi has joined the Chargers where he’s been a scout for the last 17 years.  He lives outside of Seattle, and always loves to talk Huskies football.

He was kind enough to write testaments on all his cards.

Matthew 6:33
33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

Philippians 4:13
13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

Joshua 1:9
9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

He also enclosed a nice note thanking me for writing him.  As always, players like Paul are the ones I love to get the autographs from, as they always add to the memory I already have of them.

G/GS 115/2     REC 166    YDS 1950     AVG 11.7    TD 10     LG  32
PR 96       YDS  863       AVG 9.0    TD  0     LG 57