Category Archives: NFL

Hopkins, Brad

Card: Classic 1993
Acquired: In Person, Houston Oilers training camp 1993

A nice little piece of trivia about the Herschel Walker trade was that it was so far reaching and the picks were traded around from team to team that Brad Hopkins who’s career lasted until 2006 was considered a by product of it. The Oilers offensive line was beginning to show signs of age, and with Dean Steinkuhler‘s retirement at RT in 1991, the team had a dire need to shore up the offensive line. Brad Hopkins was drafted by the Houston Oilers in the first round of the 1993 draft. The choice was panned because of its relative lack of glamour and because Brad was the 3rd offensive tackle taken in the top 15. Hopkins went on to start 11 games that season and gain all rookie honors in 1993- the final year of Houston’s dominance in the AFC Central and the beginning of the fall of the Oiler franchise. After an all too familiar collapse in the playoffs against the Chiefs in the post-season, owner Bud Adams began to disassemble the Oilers by trading Warren Moon to Minnesota.  The team would slide to an embarrassing 2-14 record in 1994. Hopkins witnessed the fall of the franchise even further as Adams was rebuffed by the city of Houston for a new stadium called the ‘Bud Dome’.  He then quickly announced plans to move the team to the city of Nashville. In the midst of all this Hopkins started all 16 games for the first time in 1995.  He continued this streak through 1998 while the team moved from the cavernous Astrodome to Memphis, Tennessee, and the Oilers drafted both Steve McNair and Eddie George. In 1999 he’d start all 16 games again, while the Oilers completed their move to Nashville and the team changed its name to Tennessee Titans. The team went to the Superbowl that season, in the battle of traitorous owners as Tennessee lost to St. Louis. Hopkins went to the ProBowl in 2000, and also be named All Pro, blocking up front for George.

He retired in 2006 as the ‘final’ Houston Oiler still on the team roster (as McNair signed with the Baltimore Ravens). Hopkins was once memorably quoted when a correlative statistic came out that showed that NFL players were more prone to domestic violence than other sports as saying, “I’m not going to go home and trap block my wife.”

I got Brad’s autograph in 1993 while he was still a rookie at Houston Oilers training camp. Looking back I probably would have treasured his autograph more knowing he’d be the last HOUSTON Oiler.

Pease, Brent

Cards: Proset 1991, Wild Card WLAF 1992.
Acquired: TTM 2010, C/o Boise State University
Sent:  4/28    Received: 5/13  (15 days)

Small town Brent Pease was born in Moscow, Idaho, and was a starting quarterback for the Montana Grizzlies. In 1987, he was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the 11th round, but did not make the final roster. He was quickly picked up by the Houston Oilers and started 3 games during the NFL strike that year going a respectable 2-1 and throwing for 3 touchdowns.  After the strike shortened season, Pease would earn his roster spot but would quickly get bumped to 3rd string after a disastrous 1988 campaign that saw him post a 0 quarterback rating. Still he’d contribute to the Oilers, replacing punter Greg Montgomery during the season as holder for Tony Zendejas‘ kicks. In 1989 would sign with the Miami Dolphins and then he’d see time in the CFL in 1990, where he was signed by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, and finally come back to the Chicago Bears that year. He’d be drafted in the inaugural WLAF allocation draft by the Birmingham Fire in 1991, where he’d play for a season before going to the New York- New Jersey Knights in 1992.

In the WLAF for the Fire, he played well enough to steward the team to the playoffs until he was replaced by Eric Jones in the lineup. He’d then get bumped around in the quarterback shuffle in New York behind Reggie Slack and Doug Pedersen in 1992. Pease would then play for the Cincinnati Rockers of the AFL in 1993 and then retire.

Since football Pease has jumped into coaching where he has quickly climbed the college ranks. Returning to his alma matter Montana he grew quickly into the offensive coordinator job helping the college establish itself as one of the stronger passing programs at the I-AA level. After brief stints at Northern Arizona,  Kentucky, and Baylor, where all the teams offenses experienced prolific growth under his tutelage. Brent would return to his home state of Idaho where he currently serves as assistant head coach and wide receivers coach.

Utilizing the power of the internet, I located Brent quite quickly and sent off to him after I found his cards. Brent’s name has generated a lot of buzz as Boise State has remained a stalwart contender over the last few years and numerous internet reports have been linking Pease to college head coaching jobs around the country.

Games N/a   Att  210  Comp  99   Pct  47.1%   Yds 1076
Td 5   Int  9   Rat 52.8

Alexander, Jeff

Cards: Ultimate WLAF 1991, Proset WLAF 1991, Wild Card WLAF 1992, Ultimate WLAF TV2 1991.
Acquired: TTM 2010, C/o Home
Sent:  8/7  Received: 8/19  (12 days)

When you talk to historical football pundits about the WLAF and you ask them who ran for the most yards in the London Monarch’s offense, nine times out of ten people will get the question wrong and tell you it was Judd Garrett. Jeff Alexander was the leading rusher of the London Monarchs in 1991 and 1992. The plodding hard nosed fullback would rack up 391 yards in 1991 and 9 rushing touchdowns.  (His 9 touchdowns rushing would lead the WLAF.) In 1992, the Monarchs would rely on him even more as he would run for a team best 501 yards and be 5th in league rushing. Jeff would only score 1 touchdown that season, but that would be good enough to tie him with Eric Wilkerson for the WLAF career lead, before the league reorganized in 1992.

He’d finish up his career where he started in 1989 with the Denver Broncos (in 1992) and soon thereafter retire. He currently lives in Colorado. I sent him these cards and he graciously signed them in about 10 days.

Games 20     Att 212    Yds 892    Avg  4.2   Lg  41T      Td 10      |
Rec 28    Yds   251     Avg  9.0    Lg  47T     Td 2