Tag Archives: houston texans expansion draft

Lewis, Jermaine

Card: Topps 2002
Acquired: 2020, Paid Signing

Sorry this post is going to be different. It’s going off the rails a bit from the usual player biography.

Today we’re going to talk about when paid signings go bad, because I was the recipient of one. I had been after Jermaine Lewis for years, but being a terrible TTM signer, I decided to wait since I wanted him on a sorta rare Texans Inaugural Set card.

After missing out on a signing on a budget for Lewis earlier this year, I was super happy to find an affordable one going on in early November through IPO Sports Marketing. I put my card in the mail and patiently waited. The trade was accepted on October 31st. The event was scheduled for 11/14, but later on I discovered that he hadn’t updated his SCN offer to match his flyer, which said November 21st!) On December 1st I emailed the guy and asked him about the event. He did not respond. The next day I received my card back, with this additional random Topps card signed, and a note stating, “No Texans cards. Sorry.” -That’s it.

I emailed IPO Sports Marketing that day on December 2nd telling him that what I received was unacceptable and that I would like a full refund. I got no response.

I checked my SCN outbox on December 4th and noted that he had not opened any of my emails, so I decided to escalate the situation through Paypal and leave negative feedback through SCN where the trade was facilitated. -I had been more than patient with IPO Sports Marketing, and now it was taking too much of my time.

An hour or two later, I got an email from Paypal indicating my refund. Then shortly afterwards IPO Sports Marketing put my SCN email on blitz. He responded first to my email on 12/1 about where my cards were with a tirade:

I was not aware that he did not sign Houston cards til signing. I tried to give you a free card and refund. But you gave a negative?? Insane. We have had countless signings this and last month. Now you to will receive a negative. I have lost a childhood friend to Covid. But hey your card is more important!

– IPO Sports Marketing

Ok let me lay this out since he subsequently blocked me:

a. If he wasn’t aware that Lewis didn’t sign Houston cards, why didn’t he contact me over the next two weeks after the signing to let me know?

b. He sent me that autographed card, but did not tell me I’d be issued a refund, nor did he do it until I requested one. 

c. Yes I patiently waited for his service that he did not fulfil correctly or with customer service.

d. I don’t care if he had countless signings. – This is called an ‘argument by authority.’ I can easily say that I have gone to HUNDREDS of in person signings, but does that give me any credo: Nooo.

e. Negative feedback? -That’s retaliatory.

f. Sorry, I didn’t know he lost somebody to COVID. -That’s his personal business though and isn’t material to the transaction. 

g. My card is important to me. -Why is he belittling me for his failure? Maybe he’s really only interested in the big fish that he’s cooking and not little guys like me? I mean just says more about him.

His next email was one telling me to be patient and they’d offer me a refund AFTER I got the card in the mail. The problem was the email he responded to was the email that I told him that I had already received the card and it was not acceptable from 12/2.

His last email was notification of the negative feedback he left me, where he claims to have offered me a free card and a full refund- and that I am just a crazy person.

So I immediately contacted the admins at SCN, and after investigating they removed his retaliatory feedback (not to mention it is clearly stated not to do it in the rules). IPO Sports Marketing attempted to explain a revisionist history of the situation, trying to make it sound like they had offered me the card for free and a refund and that I was just a crazy person who ran off and hammered them with Paypal and negative feedback.

Now why would I do that when I just want my autographed card? Why would I create unnecessary drama for myself like that? This has happened to me in the past, and you know how the seller handled it with me? COMMUNICATION. And you know what I did? – I didn’t leave negative feedback. That’s for sure. (What IPO Sports Marketing failed to understand as a retailer is with every customer service mistake, there’s an opportunity to fix and an opportunity to make another sale- but he didn’t.)

All he had to do was say, “Hey couldn’t get this done. I’m so sorry. Here’s a free autographed card. I’ve already refunded you your money (and gone through with it).” That’s the tragedy of it. It became a mountain for me to stand on because he refused to deal with the mole hill in front of him.

I do not take negative reviews lightly and I do not like issuing them whether its SCN or EBay or whatever. I am exceedingly patient, so when I decide I am unhappy with a service, it is not done lightly. It is done after methodical documentation and an opportunity at every corner to give the retailer a chance to communicate with me or make me whole.

Thankfully with the available time date stamps from the emails that I received from both my personal email and SCN, I was able to compose a timeline for them to review, so they could understand that his timeline of events was not accurate. My negative feedback was accurate to the situation and the moment, but after this happened, I felt I should write about it, so others would be aware that there are bad signing situations that happen.

Later that week, a Ravens fan posted all his Jermaine Lewis autographs that he obtained from that signing. Curiously, he included 3 signed Texans cards that Lewis had penned. What took the cake later, was one of my friends also experienced a similar situation with the IPO Sports Marketing. IPO offered to send him any Jermaine Lewis autograph that he had- and sent a photo grouping of all the cards, and among them again was another Jermaine Lewis Houston Texans card.

Why would IPO Sports do this to me? Coupled with my friend’s issue, I am led to believe that IPO Sports forgot to get our cards signed, then sloppily tried to cover it up.

There are a lot of people out there who shouldn’t be handling signings (especially now during the days of COVID). There are people who don’t understand customer service, who are overwhelmed by their own lives, problems, or underlying issues that they didn’t understand about handling autograph signings.

Be patient with them. Go easy on them, but don’t let them gaslight you when it is their fault. Tolerate to a point and don’t be afraid to hold them accountable when you’ve been more than reasonable and had enough.

That being said I’ll wait until some other time to write about Jermaine, when I have another autograph in hand of his on his Texans card. In the meantime, and I say this with conviction: Beware about doing business with IPO Sports Marketing.

Wuerffel, Danny

udcolldg11 wuerffelCards: Upper Deck College Legends 2011, Bowman NFL Europe Prospects 2000.
Acquired: TTM 2014, C/o Home*
Sent: 1/2    Received:  1/13  (11 days)
* Donation enclosed of $20 to Desire Street Ministries

Danny Wuerffel has had a colorful football career. The catalyst behind the 1996 Florida Gators National Championship, Wuerffel rewrote many of the school’s records en route to a Heisman Trophy and All-American Honors that year.  He was drafted by the New Orleans Saints in the 3rd round of the 1997 draft, – where he received the ‘quarterback of the future’ label for much of his time there while Billy Joe Hobert and Billy Joe Tolliver handled being the quarterback of today. In 1999, injuries plagued the Saints quarterback rotation, but he only continued to see backup time, this time to Jake Delhomme.

Afterwards Danny decided to hone his craft in Europe. Assigned to the Rhein Fire, Danny had an incredible season playing in the NFLE, culminating in a World Bowl victory and MVP honors.

bow00 WeurffelHe returned stateside but did not see any playing time for the Packers and Bears in 2000 and 2001. Left exposed to the Texans expansion draft for the 2002 season, the Texans drafted Wuerffel, and then immediately traded him to Steve Spurrier in Washington. It would be the Texans first trade in franchise history, and for Wuerffel it would be a coming home of sorts- sort of- being reunited with his former head coach from Florida in Spurrier. With Wuerffel in place the Redskins could get Spurrier’s Fun ‘N Gun offense off the ground in DC.  The problem with the Redskins was their pourous offensive line. Still Danny came in relief for the first 3 games before being named starter. He’d post a 2-2 record and throw his first 3 professional touchdowns in a 27-20 loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving day that year.  The team remained surprsingly competitive even in their losses, but he’d head back to the bench for promising rookie Patrick Ramsey.

After the season Danny retired, and has focused much of his time into charity and religion. His ministry, Desire Street, was doing well in its outreach program in New Orleans- before it was devastated by Hurricane Katrina. There was nothing left. He rebuilt it from scratch again and now services needy people in the Southeast, primarily in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Georgia. Wuerffel was also diagnosed with Guillian-Barre Syndrome, and has become an unlikely spokesperson for understanding the disease and the treatments available.

NFL   25/10       ATT  350      COMP 184      PCT  52.6%        YDS 2123        TD  12   INT  22     RAT   56.4
RUSH  31         YDS 189       AVG   6.1      TD  1   LG 29t

NFLE   ATT   260    COMP 161    PCT 61.9%        YDS  2042
TD 25    INT  7    RAT 107.2
RUSH 24    YDS 80    AVG 3.3    LG 18    TD 2

Sharper, Jamie

ud02tex sharperCard: Upper Deck Houston Texans 2002
Acquired: IP 9/1/2013, Houston Texans Kemah Boardwalk Kickoff
Failure: TTM 2010, C/o Home
See Also: Texans Ambassadors

After carving a great stint out at UVA and helping the team to an ACC title in 1995, the Baltimore Ravens selected Jamie Sharper with the 34th pick of the 2nd round in the 1997 NFL draft. An unsung, integral part to the Ravens 2000 title run Jamie’s defining moment with the franchise came in Super Bowl XXXV against the Giants (and former Virginia teammate Tiki Barber) when the historic Baltimore defense held New York without an offensive touchdown in the 35-7 rout.

In 2002, the Houston Texans were conducting their expansion draft from a pool of NFL veterans. Facing salary cap issues, the Ravens left Sharper exposed. In the weeks running up to the special draft for my newly adopted team, I had paid special attention to the list and pegged Sharper as the highest rated player available.  The Texans selected him with their 5th pick, and along with fellow teammate Jermaine Lewis, he joined the fledgling franchise.

Sharper fit well in the Texans’ 3-4 base alignment brought in by head coach Dom Capers. Slotted inside at RILB, Jamie was one of the better linebackers in the league, manhandling ball carriers and marauding for the occasional fumble. He’d help anchor the linebacking corps for the Texans for the next 3 seasons. Defensively the Texans were actually pretty good, but because the offense was so bad along the exterior of the line and quarterback David Carr was pressed into immediate duty, the team had few high points after surprising the Dallas Cowboys in their first regular season game 19-10. In 2003, Jamie led the NFL with a whopping 301 combined tackles, but in the meantime though, and after 3 seasons, most of the expansion players’ contracts matured like a ticking time bomb.  The Texans were pressed into immediate Salary Cap action. Purging nearly all the players from the expansion draft, the thought from the team was by going younger and faster at linebacker, they could also go cheaper and still remain competitive. I was blindsided and incensed. Jamie was given the option of seeking a trade, but because of his larger salary cap number, he eventually was cut and signed with the Seattle Seahawks. The Texans in the meantime were not competitive. They finished a dismal 2-14 and owner Bob McNair wisely cleaned house after the 2005 season. It was a blessing in disguise for Jamie.  In his final season in the NFL, he was a member of the Seahawks first Super Bowl appearance, but a knee injury ended his season after 136 straight NFL starts, and unfortunately his career.

sharperI had written Jamie back in 2010, but did not hear back from him. The Texans have an extremely active alumni association of local former players, (much to the organization’s credit,) that reaches out to fans throughout the year. Missing out on a few Academy appearances, since I just couldn’t justify driving 200+ miles for one autograph, I decided to go to the Texans 2013 Kickoff at Kemah- which is a team rally to get fans excited for the upcoming season. Knowing that 3 players were to make an appearance, I packed all my ambassador cards, and lucked out with Jamie. After surviving a blistering 3 hour wait in 100+ degree and 100% humidity, while fighting off a pack of line cutters, I eventually was able to get Jamie on this 2002 expansion franchise card from Upper Deck. He was also very impressed by my Jamie Sharper jersey (yes I am probably the only person who owns one) that I was wearing and offered to sign it, but I told him no, since I like to wear it and probably needed to wash it after waiting so long in the heat. (I think he was a bit disappointed though, so I may retire it with an autograph the next time, if I see him again.) When I asked him which ball carrier he hated or feared the most to tackle, he took a second to respond and told me, “Definitely Barry Sanders.”

G/Gs  136/135    Tac           Sac  25.5       Fum  13        Int   2      Yds  49     Avg    24.5     Td 0    Lg 45