Category Archives: NFL

Woodson, Darren

Card: StarPics 1992
Acquired: Dallas Cowboys Training Camp 1993

As you see on the 1992 StarPics card, Darren Woodson was originally an outside linebacker, but his skill set determined that he was a better fit at the safety position. With the emergence of Darren Woodson at safety, James Washington became expendable. That’s a tall thing to say considering James Washington’s performance for the Cowboys over the past few seasons had been exceptional- but Woodson was up to the tall order, both being a great hitter and well rounded in coverage. In 1993 he’d set a team record for defensive backs with 155 tackles from his strong safety position. Frequently he’d line up in a linebacker position (sometimes called ‘elephant’ at the college level) and unfairly cover the slot receiver. He’d be named AP in 1994, 1995 and 1996, the ProBowl from 1994 to 1998, was a SuperBowl Champion 3 times and over 12 seasons he’d become Dallas’ all-time combined leading tackler with 1350 tackles.  With the retirement of Darren Woodson in 2004 (due to injury) Dallas’ secondary collapsed.  In 2006 a rumored comeback was in the works, but with the Cowboys unable to make the playoffs he remained in retirement. Since football Darren has been involved with ESPN and provides honest commentary about the Dallas Cowboys. Listed below is also a nice highlight reel of Darren’s hits and picks.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wQOf3Tcd2Io

G/Gs 178/162    Tac 1350   Sac 11   Fum 12     Int 23    Yds 271     Avg 11.7    Td 2    LG 84

Anderson, David “Dave”

Cards: Donruss Classics 2006, Upper Deck 2006, Leaf Rookies & Stars 2006 Longevity, Leaf Rookies & Stars 2006, Donruss Gridiron 2006, Bowman 2006, Topps Magic 2007.
Acquired: Texans Blitz 2009, In Person 2010

Okay so David Anderson’s story really proves how small the world is to me. I adopted the Texans as my primary team in 2002 and followed them religiously. I was amongst the throng of people who said, “What?” when the Texans took Mario Williams with the first pick of the 2006 draft. It would prove to be the franchise’s best draft, with Williams, Ryans, Winston, Daniels and Anderson all coming out of it with Williams, Ryans and Daniels have all being named to the ProBowl. Dave was the Texans final pick of their draft taken in the 7th round on the 251st pick and I thought the pick was right where it should be. A great reciever at Colorado State, he basically owned all the records at the position when he left. I watched him blow up teams in the preseason in 2006 as Dave was gunning for a job. He’d end up making the team, but would find himself cut and brought back. (Dave later would switch numbers from 14 to 89, because he wanted a ‘real wide receiver number’, after his rookie season.) Dave saw increased playing time as well starting one game in 2008, and 8 games in 2009.  Not the fastest or biggest player on the team, Anderson has solid hands- a fact he attributes to his brother throwing lightning hard footballs at him as a child. (Unofficially, he also has one of the highest thrown to/reception percentages in the league to support this as well.) He’s also a willing blocker and adequate hitter. In 2008 after catching his first professional touchdown, Anderson did Conan O’Brien’s shoestring dance, catching the latter’s attention. Anderson would capitalize off of this making an appearance on O’Brien’s late night show. In 2009, Dave would see time at tight end for the team, pulling down a career high 36 balls emphasizing his ‘do it all mentality’.  After being under utilized by the team in 2010, Anderson would see some time at punt returner, and occasionally back in the slot. In week 14 he grabbed three catches against the Ravens and appeared poised for a good game, but separated his shoulder and missed the rest of the season. He’d finish the year with a paltry 117 yards on 11 catches.

In Spring of 2009, while I was a teacher’s assistant at school, I ran into another football fan- which is a rarity at an art school. I explained to the other fan that I was a Houston Texans fan.  In busts David Anderson’s brother, Erik, questioning me about my loyalties to the franchise, so I had to make perfectly clear that the Oilers retired the day they left Houston- and that the Titans are my arch enemies. He then asked me if I knew who his brother was, quickly trailing off that most people don’t have a clue who David Anderson is. My rebuttal was speedy robotically automatic pulling Dave’s draft card from my brain. We became fast friends. As I helped Erik through the class, he and I would discuss the franchise.  One week during 2009 he brought me in a football from Dave completely signed by the team and retriggering my autograph hobby. I’d meet Dave at their parents’ house in the 2010 post season, where he signed a card or two more for me and took a photo with me. It was illuminating for me as a fan to discuss the league, the fans, and the franchise with him, and it gave me great insight and patience into the inner-workings of the sport. Here’s a picture of Dave and I after we took in the Colts game against the Jets in the playoffs of 2010. In addition you will also find a video about the string dance.

http://nfl.fanhouse.com/2008/10/29/conan-obrian-instructs-texans-wr-david-anderson-on-the-string-d/

G/Gs  61/10     Rec   81     Yds  886    Avg 10.9    Td  3    Lg  65T

Gerhart, Tom

ult92 gerhartCard: Ultimate WLAF 1992
Acquired: In person 1991, San Antonio Riders v. Sacramento Surge

Tom was initially a finance major at Ohio but found himself pursuing the sport of football. After not making the roster of the Buffalo Bills in 1990, Tom would be signed by the Sacramento Surge in 1991 and paired across from All World Safety Greg Coauette. In1992, he’d win a ring in World Bowl II, wearing the helmet cam while facing up against the no-huddle spread offense of the Orlando Thunder.  After the league folded North American operations in 1992, Gerhart signed with the Philadelphia Eagles, suiting up for 1 game but soon thereafter joined the Sacramento Gold Miners in 1994 in the retooled CFL USA. Tom was a traditional inline safety, and his best work was close to the line of scrimmage. He’d continue to play in the CFL over the next few years with the Texans, where he had a career high 6 sacks,  and also the Hamilton Tiger-Cats where he contributed a career high 84 tackles. He retired after playing one game for the Eskimos in 1998.

WLAF
G/Gs  N/a     Tac N/a    Sac 1    Fum N/a
Int 3      Yds 11     Avg 3.8     Td 0    lg  8