Card: TNT UT Legends Acquired: IP, 2014 See Also: Rod Babers
Over the years I’ve pretty much tapped out the complete card collection of Rod Babers. He’s a great local radio personality, and a really big fan and student of sports. It seems that whenever I run into him- we pick up where we left off, promise to hang out, and never get around to it. I mean maybe its the unsaid rule I follow that is basically even if a person is a D-list celebrity you should give them a lot of space. We tried to network for a Texans game in 2017, but that fell through. In the meantime he had a fallout with 1300 the Zone, but thankfully picked up right where he was at with ESPN doing what he does best.
I decided to pop in and say hi in 2018- A year after the last time I saw him at the Texans draft party when I had accurately predicted the Texans would trade up to take Deshawn Watson. We again picked up where we left off, and just started talking sport. His team thanked me for coming by and hanging out and we chatted for a bit. It was good times. We talked briefly about the AAF and the Texans but really weren’t able to get into details since he was pretty busy.
We catch up from time to time and he’s always very personable and friendly and loves to sign autographs.
Looks like Steven was getting a bit tired of signing cards at this point. The autograph looks a bit shortened- but I’ll take it!
Steven Johnson is a great football story- as he’s managed to succeed against all odds. He didn’t receive any college opportunities out of high school, and after playing both ways at Wyoming Seminary, he suffered a devastating knee injury that tore it essentially from the socket. After rehabbing, he walked-on at Kansas and fought his way up the depth chart. By his Junior year he was an entrenched starter at linebacker. He finished his college career with 225 total tackles, 11.5 tackles for loss, 3 sacks, 3 pass deflections and an interception in 35 games.
Undrafted, Steven signed with the Denver Broncos in 2012 and managed to make the 52 man roster playing primarily on special teams. He started 7 games in 2014 at middle linebacker, posting 39 total tackles, .5 sacks, and a fumble recovery. He’d then embark on a series on stops with the Titans (2015), Steelers (2016), Steelers and Ravens (2017).
He’d join the Alliance of American Football for the 2019 season and be assigned to the Arizona Hotshots. Steven had a banner season for the Hotshots. He’d lead the team in interceptions with 3, and finish 3rd on the team in combined tackles with 48.
After the AAF folded suddenly, Johnson was selected by the Seattle Dragons of the XFL 2020. Over the course of the 5 game season, Steven posted 48 tackles to lead all players in the league. Unfortunately due to the Coronavirus outbreak- the XFL cancelled the remainder of the season
Trey Marshall is another defensive back from FSU. While both Texas and LSU claim hegemony over defensive backs, Florida State over the past few years has been on somewhat of a roll. Sort of an afterthought to then starter Derwin James at safety, Trey came in in a pinch for the Seminoles during 2016, and recorded 58 tackles. Playing in 9 contests as a Senior in 2017, he had 44 tackles and 2 tackles for loss. An aggressive in the box safety, Marshall only had 6 pass deflections over his career and no interceptions. Still his physical tools graded out well enough that the Broncos decided to bring Trey into camp. He impressed enough to be brought back on the team’s practice squad for 2018, and was promoted to the regular season roster at the end of the year. Through 2019 he has 25 tackles, and is 1/1 on fumble recoveries.
Celebrating the game, the players, the cards, and the autographs for over 25 years.