Tag Archives: Houston Texans

Hollings, Tony ‘Superman’

poff03-tohollingsCard: Playoff Contenders 2003
Acquired: 2016, EBay

Tony Hollings’ career has experienced some peaks and valleys.  He arrived at Georgia Tech as a defensive back in 2000.  Needing a runningback, the Yellowjackets converted Hollings over to the offense.  In only 4 games he displayed electrifying Heisman potential, running 92 times for 633 yards and 11 touchdowns. He’d suffer a season ending ACL injury against BYU. Hollings declared for the Supplemental NFL draft in 2003. The Texans fell in love with him and coughed up a 2004 2nd round pick.

The Texans were looking to improve their offensive skillset. With James Allen and Jonathan Wells in the backfield, the braintrust that was in Houston expected Hollings to be the home run hitter that they desperately needed.

This has been a hallmark of the franchise, and over time has cropped up time and time again. The Texans have always felt they have been a player away, and they reach for talent whether through the draft (Hollings) or through Free Agency (Ex. Ed Reed, Ahman Green, Eric Moulds, and Brock Osweiler).

What the Texans really didn’t see was that Tony had lost the burst to the ACL injury that just made him so electrifying. Snakebitten, Hollings also experienced knee and toe injuries that limited his production. The first game he played in was the first game I went to- the Texans home opener against the Chiefs. He finished
2003 with a woeful 102 yards on 38 carries. He’d follow that up with an equally disappointing 2004 with a stat line of 47 yards on 11 carries.  A change of management in 2005 signaled the end for Hollings. He’d dress for 2 games before being shelved indefinitely and never see the field again for the Texans.

After getting nibbles from both the Bears and Colts respectively, Tony reappeared on the football radar in 2007, running hard for the Hamburg Sea Devils of the NFLE.  There he experienced a renaissance of a sense, collecting 100 carries for 389 yards and 5 touchdowns.  After the NFLE was folded, Tony’s effort earned him some NFL time briefly on the roster of the New York Jets in 2008.  Tony closed out his career in the German Football League playing for the Berlin Adler in 2009.

A frequent tailgater at Georgia Tech events, at last glance Tony lives in Georgia and works for a distribution company.  I liked Hollings and hoped that his career might work out in some way. I might try to get him on a WLAF custom at a later date.

Playoff made some nice cards, and this 2003 entry was endemic of design during the time. Everything was really bold going into the 2000s. With that giant ROOKIE pasted 3 times in the background, it sure does grab my attention, but this to me is a card that sells itself well but does not finish. I really wish that they had used the rest of the right side of the card. It feels so blank out there, and the ticket just blends in black with the steel blue which doesn’t help. The artifact from the certification stamp makes the card look like it is damaged, but among the plethora of ugly cards that were still being pumped out at that particular time, there were much worse designed cards to choose from.

NFL   G/GS  23/1      RUSH 49    YDS 149    AVG 3.0    TD 0    LG 17     |
REC 7    YDS   71    AVG 10.1   TD 0    LG  27

NFLE     RUSH 100     YDS 389       AVG 3.9     TD   5        LG  40      |
REC  8        YDS    94    AVG   11.8     TD  0    LG   39

Posey, DeVier

to12str-deposeyCard: Topps Strata 2012 Clear Cut
Acquired: 2016, EBay

Posey had his breakout season at Ohio State in his Sophmore year, 2009, with 60 catches for 828 yards at 8 TDs. 2010 resulted in equally strong numbers with 54 catches for 848 yards and 7 TDs. After controversy surrounded payments being made to players on the Buckeyes, Posey found himself suspended.  An athletic talent who is a good route runner, Posey had a solid performance at the combine and clocked a 4.5 40.

There was some hype around this pick when the Texans selected DeVier Posey in the 3rd round of the 2012 draft.  At this point Houston was looking for a new compliment to future HoF receiver Andre Johnson, and was feeling really thin at the position after Kevin Walter left.  Posey could not crack the Texans starting lineup while with the team.  A combination of injuries and a changeover in coaches didn’t help either. He finished with 22 receptions for 272 yards in three years.  The Texans traded him during the 2015 draft to the New York Jets to select Jalen Strong. Posey was cut by the Jets and then signed with the Broncos in 2016.

After being released he was claimed by the CFL Toronto Argonauts but spent the season on IR. DeVier quickly developed a rapport with QB Ricky Ray in 2017 and was second in the league in receiving with 280 yards, before he missed 6 games due to injury.  He returned to the starting lineup in late August.

The market certainly marked Posey as a future star and had him sign a bevvy of cards, but this one just stuck out. A great looking card and autograph to boot. Topps for once completely raised the bar. A partially translucent design integrated into a patch autograph card? Take my money please!

Davis (Williams), Domanick

to04 ddavisCards: Topps 2004, Playoff Absolute Memorabilia 2004
Acquired: 2016, EBay

Ah Dominick Davis… probably my favorite in the short Houston Texans Mt. Rushmore of runningbacks. He was the engine that made the Texans offense move during the early growing pains of the franchise.  Originally a 4th round pick out of LSU, Domanick burst onto the scene in 2003 with an impressive preseason debut that helped him make the squad. In the meantime the team muddled behind the uninspired rushing of free agent signee Stacey Mack and rookie Tony Hollings.  Davis was an afterthought intent on making an impression.  By week 7 the Texans had enough of the Mack-Hollings experience, and gave Davis a shot at the starting job in a week 6 tilt against the New York Jets. (Remembering his effort during the preseason that still stuck out in my mind, I quickly signed and started Domanick on my fantasy team.) The Texans lost, but Davis in his first game did not disappoint, rushing for 133 yards. He was not only the first runningback in the short 23 games of the franchise to rush for 100 yards and the single game rushing record, but also caught 9 passes for 70 yards to give him 199 for the game, a yards from scrimmage team record. 3 more times during his rookie season, Domanick rushed for over 100 yards which helped him rumble for 1031 yards and 8 TDs winning the 2003 Rookie of the Year Honors.

poff04mem-dodavis2004 was Davis’ watershed moment. He had a combined 1731 yards from scrimmage, posting career season highs in all rushing categories (302 carries, 1188 yards, 13 rushing TDs, and 68 receptions for 588 yards). During a week 14 contest against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Domanick again broke his single game rushing record (31 carries 158 yards).  The Texans were content rushing on the back of Davis to support their anemic QB play.  Behind him really was a who’s who of runningbacks and role players.  Davis was the darling of fantasy football- a 4 down back dynamo.

In 2005 Davis career came to a sudden end after 11 games. He rushed in 5 contests for 20 or more carries, including back to back 28 carry efforts in week 6 and 7.  In week 10 he almost eclipsed his single game rushing record with 155 yards on 29 carries against the Ravens. The following week against the Titans, Davis ran 22 times for 139 yards- in his final game.  I don’t think most people at the time knew it, (I mean I sure didn’t) but as Domanick left the field, it’d be the final time he’d suit up as a pro. The team in the meantime completely disintegrated finishing with a 2-14 record. The original coaching staff and front office would be dismissed after the season.

The Texans and Davis held out hope he’d return, if not sometime during 2006, for sure 2007.  He rehabbed and returned for 2006, but a ‘bone bruise’ in his knee aggravated during training camp caused him to be placed back on IR for all of 2006.

During this time period, Domanick changed his last name to Williams, more in line with his family’s name.  He also changed his number to 31 and got a new look to boot.  As Williams continued to rehab, rumors began to circulate that he’d never be able to play again. Eventually it came to light that if Williams was to continue playing football, he’d be running bone on bone- as the cartilage in his knee had nearly been destroyed.  As he was in a fair amount of pain and he could not pass his physical, he was cut by the Texans in 2007.

As of this post, Domanick is retired and living in Louisiana.  Recently I went ahead and acquired these two solid certified autographs of Davis/Williams for a cheap price through EBay. He popped up briefly and just long enough on Twitter for me to send him a copy of this really cool painting I did of Williams- some 10 years ago, but I wasn’t able to close a deal to get it signed. I’d love to see the Texans bring him back as an ambassador in the future which he sounded open to when I briefly talked to him, but he’s since disappeared again.  While Davis/Williams star burned briefly bright in the hearts and minds of Texans and fantasy football fans, he’s now relegated to being a footnote of firsts in the team’s record books.

G/GS 40/36     RUSH 770     YDS 3195     AVG 4.1     TD 23     LG 51T
REC 154    YDS 1276    AVG 8.3    TD 5    LG 38