Tag Archives: Carolina Panthers

Carrier, Mark (WR-2)

Cards: Upper Deck 1992 Bucs Checklist, GameDay 1992, Topps 1990 1000 Yard Club, Action Packed 1990
Acquired: 2019, C/o Home
Sent: 1/2 Received: 1/11 (11 days)
See Also: Mark Carrier WR

Well 2019 is off to a good start with my first official success in Mark Carrier former Bucs, Browns, and Panthers receiver. Along the way with all three franchises he seemed to leave an indelible and respectable mark on each franchise. It wasn’t until 2018 that wide receiver Mike Evans of the Bucs broke Mark’s single season receiving yardage record for the franchise during the last game of the season. A stellar TTM respondent, Mark signs virtually everything- provided you of course don’t confuse him with the defensive back from the same era. As this is the 10th year I’ve been back at the game, I’ve decided to dust off the books and write some of those players who responded to me over the years. Mark was one of those who responded way, way back in 2011, signing a slew of cards for me.

In 2014, Mark announced the Panthers second round pick at the draft. As of this post he is the Director of Player Relations for the team.

A player with a stack of amazing cards, I had wanted to reload and get back to Mark again for a few more that I had overlooked.

Probably my favorite of this stack is the Upper Deck 1992 Buccaneers Checklist. The artwork is just amazing on this card. They just don’t make them like they used to anymore. The bold outline around the card is just right and frames the image in a very classy way. I especially like how Mark’s profile image and him catching the football take precedence over the buccaneers by simple boldness of color.

His 1,000 Yard Club card was like most cards from Topps to me at the time- always at least a distant 3rd or 4th in quality or interest to me. While the look is quite dated, that is part of the charm of this card. The boldness of the yellow combined with the orange and green is typical of design from that era. Still it is a great photo of him and at the time it was the only glossy card that was in each pack.

As usual during this period for the most part, Action Packed set a high bar for others to follow in terms of photo quality. This card was no different, and is an exciting action shot of Mark. Most photos it seemed were also framed from this distance in the set as well in a very comfortable ‘in your face’ distance. I didn’t have this card but when I saw it, I knew it’d look amazing autographed so I picked up one.

The GameDay 1992 card feels like the weakest to me of the group. Maybe because it is the only one with a defender in the image, or the fact that the rules of the card are for only the main subject to be in color, take away from the overall shot, but regardless- this was more of a set need than anything else.

Mark has a pretty solid autograph all the way around. The looping C in his last name really makes his mark go.

Cockrell, Ross

Card: Sage 2014 (212/250)
Acquired: 2016, Box Breaker

Ross Cockrell played collegially at Duke where he was a starter as a true Freshman. In 49 games playing for the Blue Devils, Ross had 233 total tackles, 7 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, 1 forced fumble, and 12 interceptions for 80 yards and a TD.  A solid special teamer, Ross also holds the school record for the longest blocked field goal return for a TD with a 75-yard gallop against FIU in 2012. Ross performed well at the combine, and improved upon his numbers at his pro day.

Cockrell was selected in the 4th round by the Buffalo Bills, but after seeing limited action his rookie year, he’d be cut a year later. The Bills hoped to bring him back to the practice squad, but he’d jump to the Pittsburgh Steelers instead.  He quickly assimilated the defensive game plan and started 7 games in 2015. He posted 2 interceptions, 11 pass deflections, a forced fumble, and 33 tackles.  During 2016, Cockrell started the entire slate of games, and had 47 tackles, 14 pass deflections, and a fumble recovery. He’d be traded to the New York Giants in 2017 after the arrival of Joe Haden in Pittsburgh. Over 9 starts, Ross recorded 3 interceptions, 11 pass deflections, and 37 tackles.

Always flying under the radar, I had hoped the Texans would make a move for Ross, who is a pretty good slot man, however they had their fill of DBs bringing in Aaron Colvin and Honey Badger.

Ross took his talent to another defensive minded franchise instead for 2018- The Carolina Panthers. Ross had a pretty solid camp ongoing, and was expected to start, until he broke his leg. He spent the entire season on IR.

Johnson, Devon ‘Rockhead’

Card: Sage 2016 (78/250)
Acquired: 2017, Box Breaker

Rockhead Devon Johnson went to Marshall where he was plugged in all over the place to get him on the field and acclimated to a position. During his time for the Thundering Herd, he was a LB, TE, and FB before being switched to tailback. He finished his career with 305 carries for 2,373 yards, and 25 TDs,  Devon’s yards per carry was a fantastic 7.8 per carry. He would’ve fared better if not for a nasty back injury that cost him 6 games as a senior. Classified as a fullback by NFL scouts, Rockhead was not selected in the 2016 NFL Draft.  He was signed by the Carolina Panthers but after an injury in the preseason, he was waved with an injured reserve designation that sidelined him all year. Johnson got another look with the squad when he returned from injury in 2017, but Rockhead did not make the final cuts.