Tag Archives: defensive player of the year 1985

Singletary, Mike (2)

aprks92 singletaryCard: Action Packed Rookies 1992
Acquired: 2015, Future Considerations
See Also: Mike Singletary

Mike Singletary went from being a golden boy in coaching cirlces to a pariah after his tenure as the head coach in San Fransisco. Fired with one game left in the 2010 season,  it’s hard to accept sometimes how harsh the mistress of football can be.  Mike joined Leslie Frazier’s  staff on the Minnesota Vikings in 2011. He’d hold the unique position of Linebackers Coach/ Special Assistant to the Coach.

When the Vikings cleaned house after the 2013 season, Mike was not retained.  In the meantime, Mike went on an introspective journey of sorts, shouldering the burden of his shortcomings in San Fransisco. He has spent time travelling to and learning from former coaches, former players, and even trainers, trying to refine his knowledge, preparation, and communication skills.  Mike wants to coach again, and at this point, it’s a crime that he hasn’t come closer to coaching opportunities around the league, with only an interview for the Giants in 2016.

My friend Nathan was at the Baylor vs Texas football game in 2015 that I couldn’t attend. He was nice enough to spot me on this autograph I needed for the Action Packed 1992 Rookies set.  It was important that I get an in person autograph of Singletary as it has long been rumored that he uses a ghost signer.

Long, Howie

Card: Score 1989
Acquired: In Person 1990, Dallas Cowboys Training Camp

Howie Long over the last few years has become pretty well known as a pre-game commentator, Chevy Commercials, Radio Shack, and a few really bad movies, (although I liked him in “Broken Arrow”).

Drafted in the second round of the 1981 draft, Howie would have a respectable rookie season for the Raiders but he would not start any games. In 1982 Long would start 5 games and make 5.5 sacks at left defensive end which would become his home for the next 11 seasons. From 1983-1985 Howie would dominate from the outside, tallying 13,12, and 10 sacks respectively. He’d be named to the Pro Bowl from 1983-1987,1989,1992 and 1993. Of those seasons he’d be named AP in 1984 and 1985 and help the Raiders win SuperBowl XVIII. After the 1993 season Long would retire. Considered by many to be one of the best 3-4 defensive ends of all time, in 2000 he’d be inducted into the NFL HoF on his second ballot,  the NFL All 80s team, and was named NFL defensive player of the year in 1985 by a few publications.
In a more comical moment when I got Howie’s autograph, he completely ignored autograph alley and went inside. 15 minutes later after the crowds slowly started to disperse, Long emerged with his pads off, a Dallas Cowboys shirt on and a gigantic smile. He graciously pawed through the crowds and signed a lot of autographs. Over his career Howie has had two trademark hairstyles first with a pseudo mullet during the 80s and post playing has had a military style flat top. His son Chris, is currently a defensive lineman for the Rams.

G/Gs 179/152    Tac   N/a     Sac 91.5    Fum 10   Int  2    Yds  84  Avg  42.0     Td 0      lg 73

Singletary, Mike

Card: Action Packed 1989
Acquired: TTM 1992, C/o The Chicago Bears

An incredible middle linebacker with a nose for the ball, Mike Singletary displayed his abilities early on in high school and later at Baylor recording 30+ tackles in a game on 3 separate occasions. Before he was drafted in the second round of the 1981 draft by the Bears, Singletary set a team record with 662 career tackles, including a mind boggling 232 as a Sophomore at Baylor where he won the Davey O’Brien Award. After being selected, it took him only seven games before he became a near permanent fixture for the Bears over the next 12 years notching 10 straight ProBowl appearances from 1983-1992, Defensive player of the year in 1985 and 1988, and All Pro (first team) from 1983-1989, and 1991.

In 1985 he’d help the defense under Buddy Ryan and Mike Ditka to a victory in Superbowl XX contributing 2 fumble recoveries in the team effort to hold the Patriots to a total of 7 yards rushing.  After retiring in 1992, Singletary bought a car dealership in Montana and slowly worked his way back into the coaching ranks, wrote a book, and coached the San Fransisco 49ers. A hard nosed, ‘no nonsense’ coach, Singletary has been known to do slightly outrageous things to get his players attention and motivate them to win going as far as to moon his players on one occasion.  He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1998 and the NFL All 80s team.

I sent off for Mike’s autograph in what was rumored to be his last year. I asked for his autograph on two cards: An Action Packed 1989, and the latter a Pro Set 1991 card for my grandfather who lived in Waco, (where Baylor University was). I got both back in the mail signed and gave the other to my grandfather, who in his haste, pinned the card with a push pin to his cork board. I’d visit him over the next 10 year or so and occasionally see the card on the wall, before my grandfather started suffering from Alzheimers. He put up a good fight even after he was moved to a nursing home but it was hard to deal with him when he had no clue who I was, even when I visited on my birthday. He passed away in 2009. I never saw the card again.

Games  179     Tac  1488     Sac 19     FF 12       Int 7    Yds 44  Avg 6.2   Td 0