Card: Ultimate WLAF 1992 Promo Acquired: TTM 2014, C/o Home Sent: 5/23 Received: 6/14 (22 days) See Also: Stan Gelbaugh ‘Blueprint’
“Well he was one of the real good players over there with the London Monarchs there. He’s played a lot of football in his life and I know that he counts that time with London as one of the highlights- and to be the World Bowl champ in year number one and to be a part of that team, I know he has great memories.”
– Former SA Riders QB and Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett on Stan Gelbaugh
So I had this one last card of Stan Gelbaugh,- part of a promo pack given to fans upon entry during a 1992 WLAF game. I think I got them all, but I only had a few of them or a rare single here and there. There are two differences when you look at the promo cards: First, the front has a different color stripe than the default team. Second, with some rarety, the photo of the player can be different. Finally the back touts the Ultimate brand and their million dollar promotion they were doing that year if you spelled out the word WORLD. Some of the promotions were in different languages as well. I am not sure how many made it into circulation- little less what players are officially covered in this mini set. The demand is low so they probably aren’t worth much, but for a collector like me, it holds value. This is an otherwise great card of Stan, and I actually prefer the promo with the alternate stripe in yellow and black over the base card set.
Stan Gelbaugh is one of a long line of noted quarterbacks that came out of the University of Maryland. A sidearm quarterback drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the 6th round of the 1986 draft, Gelbaugh ended up punting for the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the CFL that season. Later he signed with the Buffalo Bills where he was backup for 4 seasons. Finally after a short off season with the Bengals in 1990, he found himself out of football and giving up the sport for good. The ‘gods of football’ had different plans for Stan Gelbaugh though when former teammate Jim Haslett convinced Stan to take another shot when the WLAF opened its doors for business.
Drafted by the London Monarchs in their supplemental draft in 1990, Stan would get his second chance. Mentored by coach Larry Kennan, Stan started the season as the backup quarterback, but by the end of the first game he laid his claim to the starting job. He never relinquished it, grabbing MVP honors from the league and leading the Monarchs to an 11-1 record and the first World Bowl championship.
After a rough political offseason between the WLAF and the NFL, Gelbaugh found himself on the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, then quickly back in the NFL on the Phoenix Cardinals. Before the end of that 1991 season, he’d then be signed to the Seattle Seahawks, where former coach Larry Kennan was now offensive coordinator. As his roundabout tour continued, Gelbaugh exasperatedly returned to the Monarchs for the 1992 WLAF season, where the team collapsed under a new coach and a 2-7-1 record. (Gelbaugh still turned in almost 2000 yards passing and 11 touchdown passes.) After the 1992 WLAF season, Gelbaugh returned to the Seahawks, where in one MNF contest, he ignited the Seahawks to an improbable comeback victory over their rival Denver Broncos. Stan retired after the 1996 season.
Gelbaugh since retirement has been involved in coaching and now works full time for a construction company in Washington DC and loves golfing. He finished his London career as the team’s leading quarterback in almost every category. Gelbaugh also finished as the WLAF’s career leader for attempts, completions, yards and touchdowns. He’d also be the only quarterback in the league to throw for two 90 yard plus touchdown strikes.
I took a stab in the dark at Stan Gelbaugh, utilizing the power of the internet (Google) to find his address. His name isn’t the most common in the universe, and after about 20 minutes I was able to track him down. I broke a major rule when I mailed Stan: I sent more than 4 cards. In fact I sent seven, (every WLAF card he ever had). I told him he could sign what he wanted and return it and that would be fine. He kindly signed every one for me. Included below are his WLAF career statistics.
Games 20 Att 582 Comp 336 Avg 57.7 Yds 4622 Td 28 Int 24 Lg 98T Rat 82.1
Celebrating the game, the players, the cards, and the autographs for over 25 years.