Category Archives: NFL

Henne, Chad

Cards: SPX 2008 (277/599), Score 2009, Score 2014, Prism 2014
Acquired: EBay 2015, TTM 2016, C/o Home
Sent: 5/10   Received: 5/19  (9 days)

Chad Henne is an absolutely underrated quarterback.  Whenever he takes the field in place of Blake Bortles for the Jaguars against the Texans, I get very nervous. He frequently will just take off and run for 4-7 yards instead of trying for a low percentage completion.

After Chad built an impressive resume at Michigan as a 4 year starter, he was selected in the second round of the 2008 draft by the Miami Dolphins.  The heir to the throne of Chad Pennington, he played sparingly his rookie year, appearing in 3 games in mop up duty.  Chad took over the gig full time in 2009 (after a shoulder injury to Pennington) and in 14 starts, compiled a 7-6 record as a starter, throwing for almost 2900 yards and 12 TDs.  He again returned as starter in 2010, completing 301 of 490 attempts with 15 TDs.   Chad could not hold onto the starting quarterback job in 2011, fighting Matt Moore the entire season.

The Dolphins decided to go in another direction at quarterback in 2012, drafting former Texas A&M signal caller Ryan Tannehill. In the meantime, Henne was the odd man out and signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars.  Initially he’d be Blaine Gabbert’s backup, but as the team continued to struggle,  Chad was thrust into the lineup. He’d post 11 TDs on 308 attempts, averaging a bit over 208 yards a game.  Henne was the anointed starter of the Jaguars in 2013. He’d throw a career high 503 times for 3241 yards and 13 touchdowns.  (The Jaguars would sweep the Texans for the first time in- a very long time that year.)

The Jaguars decided to start over again at the quarterback position in 2014, selecting Blake Bortles in the 1st round of the NFL Draft.
Chad’s playing time has decreased significantly since then. He saw action in 3 games in 2014, but was quickly supplanted by Bortles as the starting quarterback. Since then Blake has been almost impervious to harm, so Chad has not been on the field at all. He’s restructured his contract twice to help out the Jaguars salary cap.  Henne is a veteran now and has seen his way around many defenses in the past.  He may not have the best TD to INT ratio, but I sense there is still some tools there that some quarterback guru could groom.

In 2017 with a new coaching staff in place and a new GM in Tom Coughlin that had no ties to Bortles whatsoever- it’s clearly obvious that the franchise has become impatient with Blake. They’ve put him on a short leash with Henne waiting to start in the wings.

 

Alexander, Dominique

leaf15_domalexanderCard: Leaf Draft 2016
Acquired: 2016, Box Breaker

After taking the Big 12 by storm in his Freshman season, Dominique Alexander held down the starting position at linebacker for the Sooners for 3 years before joining his brother Derrick  in the 2016 NFL draft.  Undersized, but plays with intensity, Alexander is wildly at home equally chasing the run or guarding against the pass. Scouts want to see Dominique bulk up some and improve on shedding blocks.

The 3rd ranked ILB in the 2016 draft, Alexander is expected to go early in either the 2nd or 3rd round. Surpisingly Dominique fell off the draft boards all together. He quickly found a home with the Cleveland Browns and made 7 total tackles and a fumble recovery in his rookie year.

LeBeau, Dick

Cards: TNT Signature Select, Topps 1971
Acquired: TTM 2017, C/o The Tennessee Titans
Sent: 1/19/17  Received: 1/27/17   (8 days)

To say that Dick LeBeau has a decorated football history would be an understatement. After playing both halfback and defensive back in college, LeBeau was moved to cornerback fulltime when he entered the NFL. Selected by the Cleveland Browns in 1959, LeBeau did not make the squad and was quickly snatched up by the Detroit Lions. The rest is history. The Lions already had an outstanding secondary. LeBeau was icing on the cake. He arguably became one of the best players in Detroit history (at least defensively) recording 62 interceptions for 762 yards and 3 TDs.  He earned 3 ProBowl trips from 1964-1966 and AP in 1964, 1965, and 1970.

Retiring from play after the 72 season, LeBeau immediately jumped into coaching, working as a special teams coach for the Eagles from 1973-1975.  From there he honed his skills as a positional coach with the defensive backs for the Packers (1976-1979) and Bengals (1980-1983). Dick was promoted to defensive coordinator for Cincinnati in 1984- a position he held until 1991.  In 1992 he joined the Steelers as a defensive backs coach, and in 1995 was elevated to defensive coordinator.  LeBeau returned to the Bengals in 1997 and was head coach for the franchise from 2000-2002.  After a brief stay on the Bills in 2003 LeBeau returned to the Steelers as their defensive coordinator from 2004-2014, and then off to the Tennessee Titans as their coordinator where he coaches to this day (2017).  LeBeau was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the Pride of the Lions in 2010.

Dick LeBeau is one of the most reliable high profile TTM signers in the hobby today. I think I had taken it for granted for a long time, but I finally decided to take a shot at him in 2017. Part of the reason for my delay was the lack of decent cards of him. Frankly most of the cards that were on the market were quite bad looking, or were just plain expensive. LeBeau’s turnaround was quite quick signing this old beat up Topps card and my custom in about a week flat.

G/GS  N/a    Tac N/a         Sac N/a          Fum N/a
Int   62       Yds   762          Avg  12.2      TD  3     Lg   70t