Bubby Brister is an interesting signer, as he only signs once at the end of the year. He’s been handling it this way for a few years now. If you are lucky you can get him in about 10 days flat. If you are not so lucky, you send in mid-January and wait until the end of the year. Still he is a reliable signer and he’s got some great cards out there in his Steelers uniform. Anything else feels a bit odd.
Bubby bounced around colleges before landing at NW Louisiana. This was thanks in part to committing to play baseball (Tigers) out of high school and not accepting a scholarship to Alabama (1981). He played 39 games in the Appalachian League for Bristol but decided to go back to college in 1982 to Tulane. He’d initiate the paperwork to transfer to NW Louisiana in 1983. Brister was the starter for one season in 1985. He was 191 of 342 for 2,880 yards, and 17 TDs to 14 interceptions.
The Steelers felt that Brister was a good developmental prospect. He had the tools in order to make it at the pro level. Pittsburgh dropped a 3rd round pick on Bubby, and he’d play sparingly his first 2 seasons. The Steelers had long suffered at the QB position after the retirement of Terry Bradshaw. This continued into the 1988 season, where Bubby finally showed signs of maturation. He threw for 11 TDs and 2,634 yards and showed some moves in the pocket rushing for an additional 6 more. I laughed at the Steelers at the beginning of the season, as Brister was inaccurate (47.5% completions and 14 interceptions), but he had the last laugh against the Houston Oilers in the playoffs. A gunslinger, Bubby had a strong arm and a penchant for the long bomb. He led the Steelers to an 8-6 mark and a 9-7 mark as a starter the following seasons. During his 1990 season, Brister had a career high 2,725 yards and 20 TDs to only 14 interceptions.
Bubby was unable to completely duplicate his success in that 1990 season, as he’d be limited to only 8 games in 1991 due to a knee injury. He’d never start a full 16 game slate again. After playing for the Steelers through 1992- Bill Cowher’s rookie head coaching season, Bubby was allowed to test the waters of free agency in 1993- as the team was comfortable with current starting quarterback Neil O’Donnell. Thus began the journeyman phase of Brister’s career.
Bubby signed with the Eagles in 1993- where he’d back up oft injured Randall Cunningham. He’d post a 4-4 record in relief of Randall throwing 14 TDs to just 5 interceptions, and raising some eyebrows. Brister played one lone forgettable season for the Jets in 1995, and then hopped over to Broncos. In Denver, Bubby stayed for the next 4 seasons. Brister came on during the clutch posting a 4-0 record for the Broncos in relief of John Elway and helping the team win the Super Bowl in 1998. He’d retire after one final season in Minnesota (2000) and as of 2018 lives in his home state of Louisiana.
G/GS 99/75 ATT 2212 CPD 1207 YDS 14445
TD 81 INT 78 RAT 72.3
RUSH 191 YDS 546 AVG 2.9 TD 8 LG 38