Tag Archives: cleveland browns

Taylor, Lionel

Card: Upper Deck Legends 1997
Acquired: TTM 2014, C/o Home
Sent: 6/4/14  Received: 8/13/16  (801 days)

Lionel Taylor had an amazing career that began in 1959 playing for the Chicago Bears.  He didn’t record a reception for the team during his rookie year and opted to join the upstart American Football League during its inaugural season in 1960 for the Denver Broncos. Taylor went on to endear himself as one of the most dominant receivers in the history of the league, leading the AFL in receptions 5 of the next 6 years.  In 1961 he set a modern era record with 100 receptions (which was broken in 1964 by Charlie Hennigan at 101). He played for the Broncos through 1966- joining the Oilers for the 1967 and 1968 seasons.  Lionel retired from the gridiron in 1969.

Taylor established himself quickly as an up and coming assistant coach with the Steelers as a receivers coach in 1970.  He’d remain there through 1976, cultivating a reputation as a Super Bowl winning positional coach.  He joined the Rams from 1977-1979, where he was offensive coordinator in 1980 and 1981.  Lionel then applied his trade at the college level for Oregon State, and then as head coach at Texas Southern through 1988.  Returning to the NFL in 1989, Taylor worked with the Cleveland Browns tight ends and as a pass coordinator.

Taylor joined the World League of American Football in 1995 as offensive coordinator to the London Monarchs. As the league rebranded to the NFLE, he’d take over as head coach of the franchise in 1996 and shepherd the franchise through to become the England Monarchs. It was a tough run for Taylor as head coach at the end, as his team was a vagabond franchise playing all over England looking for a new home. Since there was no established fan base, this gave the Monarchs no home field advantage.  The Monarchs finished with a 3-7 record during their swan song season.

Taylor has fully retired from the sport and lives in New Mexico.  At a clip over 800 days, I had fully given up on getting a response from Lionel, so this one came as quite a surprise to get back. It’s a shame, as with many American Football League players, Lionel has gotten little to no traction in Hall of Fame circles, despite his impressive numbers.

AFL
G/GS 121/NA      REC 567     YDS  7195    AVG 12.7   TD 45    LG  80T

NFLE
W  11     L 17       PCT .393

Banks, Carl

plinep92 bankspset90 banks
Cards: ProSet 1990, ProSet 1990 SBXXI, ProLine 1992
Acquired: TTM 2014, C/o Work
Sent: 11/17  Received: 12/8   (21 days)

Carl Banks played for the New York Giants on a stellar defense. He was a quiet, but noticeable force at outside linebacker that punctuated his career with hard hits and turnovers.  Frequently leading the Giants in tackles, Banks was a consensus All-American while playing at Michigan State, where he recorded 284 tackles over his 4 years for the Spartans. He’d be taken in the first round by the Giants during the 1984 draft.  His best season came in 1987 when he earned AP and Pro Bowl Honors,  with 9 sacks, 101 tackles, and 2 FF in just 12 games.  In 1988, Banks intercepted a pass in the 4th quarter and returned it for the game winning TD against the Falcons.  Later again in 1989, he posted a single season franchise high 7 forced fumbles.

pset90 banks sbBanks was frequently overshadowed by Lawrence Taylor on defense, but Carl had a habit of showing up most when it counted. In Superbowl XXI, he had a team high 10 tackles in a 39-20 win over the Broncos, earning Carl a nomination for the Super Bowl 25th Anniversary Team.

In 1993, he jumped ship for the Washington Redskins, and then a final 2 seasons in Cleveland for his former defensive coordinator (now coach) Bill Belichick, retiring after the 1995 season.

Carl loves doing radio- something that goes back to his playing days with the Giants. Banks was also part owner of a New Jersey Red Dogs in the Arena Football League, and briefly worked for the Jets in 1997. Otherwise, Banks has received numerous accolades from the Giants, including induction into the team’s Ring of Honor, and a member of the Giants’ All-Decade 80s team.

Carl had some amazing cards once the newer players got involved in the business. This ProSet 1990 card is among one of my favorites showing him in action stripping the ball carrier of the rock. I didn’t really like the ProLine series of cards. Most of the cards did not have a football shot, rather they focused on the player’s real lives, interests, and family. Still the subset of portraits, illustrated by Merv Corning (who worked on the Pro Set 1990 SuperBowl MVP subset) is just exquisite, and I am very impressed by the interaction that he uses to activate the white space on the page.

G/Gs 173/151      TAC  826        SAC  39.5           FUM   N/A
INT 3     YDS  21        AVG   7.0         TD   1          LG  15T

 

McCoy, Colt (2)

utud11 mccoy mmCards: UT Upper Deck 2011 Memorable Moments, Panini Absolute 2011,  Playoff Prestige 2012
Acquired: IP 4/17/2015, Sam’s Wholesale Lakeline Grand Opening
See Also: Colt McCoy

I had long debated going to the second day of the Sam’s Wholesale Grand Opening, but with a perfect storm of days I had to take off anyway, it made sense that I go ahead and dive in for the former Longhorn signal caller. I had 5 or 6 cards of him, but outside of the Longhorns card here, I really wasn’t that jazzed about anything I had. Thankfully Spoodog offered me a fairly nice Playoff 2012 to get autographed.

pres11 mccoyColt’s career has been… bumpy… since getting traded from the Browns in 2013 to the San Fransisco 49ers for low end picks. He didn’t look all that spectacular in the preseason, but still managed to do mop up duty in 4 games behind Colin Kapernick. After the season Colt signed with the Washington Redskins. The collective brains of the NFL yawned at the signing. (I myself had hoped he’d be brought in by the Texans.) Most pundits had written McCoy off and now going up against RGIII and Kirk Cousins, Colt managed to claw his way onto the roster and patiently bide his time as the best 3rd string quarterback in the NFL. McCoy eventually got his shot as injuries and inconsistency plagued the Redskins at quarterback. He’d lead the team to back to back exciting victories over the Titans, and then the heavily favored Cowboys.  Injured late in the season, his performance was good enough to earn him a new contract with the Redskins.

Amem11 mccoyThe first few people through the line got way too many multiples signed. This ruined it for the rest of us. Colt’s signature is not a quick one, taking roughly 15 seconds to complete for each card. With a decent line building, this caused the gatekeepers to ask us to limit our requests to two a person. It was not unreasonable at all- but with them not patrolling the fans at the front with McCoy, people abused it anyway. I decided 3 was not unreasonable for me to get signed as that was my original thought. When I spoke to Colt, I told him that his heroics in the Redskins Cowboys game was the stuff of legend. He grinned from ear to ear and told me it was one of his fondest memories in the NFL. He also told me that he prefers Colossians 3:23 as his testament verse of choice.