Tag Archives: buffalo bills

Gelbaugh, Stan

Cards: ProSet 1991, ProSet WLAF 1991 LL, Proset WLAF 1991, Ultimate WLAF 1991 ll, Ultimate WLAF 1991, Ultimate WLAF 1991 Team Card, Wild Card WLAF 1992.
Acquired: TTM 2010, C/o work
Sent: 7/30   Received: 9/3  (34 days)
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

Smerlas, Fred

Cards: Score Supplemental 1990, Action Packed Rookies 1990
Acquired: TTM 1991, 1992 c/o The New England Patrioits

Fred Smerlas’ name alone feels like a lineman’s name. It so happens that Smerlas was a fire plug of a nose tackle, who is remembered for his playing time with the Bills, and then later for the 49ers and Patriots before he retired in 1992 after a 14 year career. Smerlas was a East Coast kind of guy, of Greek descent, playing for Boston College and then his time with the Bills and Patriots.  Smerlas career is interesting as when he was drafted in the second round by the Bills in 1979, the team had been a perennial doormat of the AFC East for years. His rise to prominence along the Bills defensive front helped solidify the Bills line and assisted in their climb to prominence.   During this period he’d be an integral part of Buffalo’s Bermuda Triangle Defense.

Fred notched 5 ProBowl appearances over his career (1980,1981, 1982, 1983,1988) and was a first team All Pro in 1982.  At the time of his retirement he was the all time leader in games played by an NT, and was third on the Bills list with a string of 155 consecutive games played, which is amazing considering he played in the trenches.

After football Smerlas has remained as popular as ever with his recognizable mustache and colorful persona. He has dabbled in a variety of business interests and considered even a run into the political arena along with his budding radio career.  A motorcyclist, Smerlas also gives a fair amount of his time and money away to charities. Smerlas was inducted into into the Bills 50th anniversary team in 2009.

Games 200       Sacks  29.5              Tac 383               FF  10
Int  2               Yds  28           Avg  14.0            TD 0

Mohr, Chris

Cards: Ultimate WLAF 1991, Ultimate WLAF Special Teams 1991, Proset WLAF 1991 LL, Proset WLAF 1991, Athletes in Action
Acquired: TTM 2010, C/o Home.
Sent: 5/10   Received: 8/6    (88 days)

Chris Mohr was born in tiny Thompson, GA, ironically the same town of former punter great Ray Guy.  In college, Mohr would attend Alabama where he ranks as one of the best punters in the school’s history. After being drafted in the 6th round by the Buccaneers Mohr would be their punter/holder for 1989. He was named to the All Rookie team that year.

After being disappointedly cut in 1990, Mohr was drafted by the Montreal Machine of the WLAF, in their inaugural positional draft. Chris would become one of the Machine’s most notable players and he would capitalize off of the opportunity given to him by the WLAF to lead the league with 2436 yards on 57 punts (being named All-World in 1991.) Chris was signed at the end of the season by the Buffalo Bills in 1991. Mohr would stay with the Bills throughout the remainder of the 90s and 2000. He’d play from 2001- 2005 with the Falcons, and officially announced his retirement in 2007 after signing a one day contract with the Bills.  (Although many former WLAF players now pepper the coaching and minor league ranks, Chris would be the last of the original WLAF players to retire from professional football.)  Since retiring Chris has been active in Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and is an accomplished country songwriter. I was able to track him down with the power of Google, and he signed my 4 cards, including one of his own, in about 3 months time. Included are his WLAF statistics.

WLAF  P   57       Yds  2436       Avg  42.7     lg    58       in20   13       blk   2