Cards: Topps XFL 2001, Score 2010 Acquired: TTM 2019, C/o The Chicago Bears Sent: 2/4/19 Received: 4/2/19 (59 days)
Mike Furrey has made a very interesting professional football journey. After not being drafted out of Northern Iowa in 2000, he’d sign with the Colts but not make the squad.
Undeterred, he’d join the renegade XFL in 2001, where he’d play wide receiver for the Las Vegas Outlaws. He’d snag 18 catches for 242 yards and a 41 yard TD. As the team’s primary punt returner Mike also returned 11 punts for 94 yards.
After the XFL folded, he’d play for the New York Dragons of the Arena football league, spending two years with them in 2002 and 2003. During both seasons he posted 1000+ yard seasons and display a knack for playing defensive back, intercepting 6 passes. He’d also play for the St. Louis Rams in both of those years as well and oddly enough play both wide receiver and defensive back for the team, posting 21 receptions for 197 yards, and then intercept 4 passes for 143 yards, deflect 8 passes, and return one 67 yards for a TD from free safety.
Obviously Mike’s curious stat lines drew him attention in the open market as he signed with the Detrot Lions in 2006. He’d have his finest season as a WR, with 98 receptions for 1086 yards and 6 TDs in 14 starts, and follow that up in 2007 with 61 receptions for 664 yards and a TD. After a subpar 2008, Mike made a stop with the Cleveland Browns in 2009- where he saw significant time again starting 4 games at WR while moonlighting at safety as well. After the season concluded he joined the Washington Redskins but did not make the squad.
Very soon thereafter, Mike went into college coaching and as of this post in 2019, is the wide receivers coach for the Chicago Bears.
Some very interesting design between these two cards. I love the Score 2010, almost as much as Score 2009. It’s got great color, and the slightly off white helps the image stand off the canvas just a little more. I especially like the use of the designs in the top corners of the card to give it that painted effect. This set felt like a direct heir to the 2009 set that I adore.
The Topps XFL card represented everything gaudy about the Attitude Era that bled from WWE into the XFL. It’s an underused design to have both the player’s face and an action image on the front of the card, but this one pulls it off- albeit just a bit over designed.
Clinton played for the Iowa Hawkeyes in 2002, 2004, and 2005. He piled up 1864 yards on 118 receptions and 14 TDs over his 3 years there. His best season came as a Junior when he logged 58 receptions for 905 yards and 6 TDs- earning him 2nd Team All-Big Ten Honors.
Going undrafted, Solomon signed with the St Louis Rams in 2006. Afterwards he was on the rosters of the Titans and Bears in 2007. He signed with the Arena Chicago Rush in 2008, and finally found his home with the Wichita Wild of the IFL in 2009, where he was named 1st team All-IFL after posting 22 TDs and 1,008 yards receiving. He again earned All-IFL selections in 2010 and 2011. Clinton spent then next two seasons with the Sioux Falls Storm, and briefly played for the Kansas City Renegades.
In 2014 Clinton joined the Texas Revolution. Soon thereafter he’d be signed by the snake bitten San Antonio Riders of the AFL. After the season the Talons were contracted, but he was assigned to the Las Vegas Outlaws. After the Outlaws were also contracted, Solomon returned to the Texas Revolution in 2016 reuniting with former Talon Brett Reece. Clinton finished the season as the team leader with 63 receptions for 793 yards and 25 TDs.
A few years ago I had started tracking down members of the Talons who I had made cards of. I attempted to friend Clinton on Facebook, but he did not respond to me for over a year. I reached out to him when he did and he agreed to do a signing for me. Apparently he was more excited than I intially thought, because after he signed the card, he also inscribed the back of the envelope thanking me for the trading cards.
Larry Beavers is an outstanding talent in the Arena Football League. He attended a small Division III school, Wesley College in Delaware. There Beavers set the NCAA record for career kick return touchdows with a whopping 10. He also demonstrated a knack for the ball, finishing second in school history with 2,366 yards.
He went undrafted in 2009 but was signed by the Carolina Panthers. Unfortunately Beavers was among the final cuts that preseason by the squad. The following year Larry was signed by the New Orleans Saints, but again was cut in the offseason. In 2011, he signed with the Iowa Barnstormers of the Arena Football League, but quickly decided to take his talents to the CFL, landing on the roster of the Edmonton Eskimos. Beavers returned to the Arena leagues the following year and was an offseason addition to the Pittsburgh Power.
It was in 2013 that Larry joined the New Orleans Voodoo, and that’s where he’s made an impressive impact. He’d earn second team All-Arena Team Honors in 2014 as a kick returner cracking the 1,000 yard barrier both as a receiver and as a kick returner. Larry was assigned to the expansion Las Vegas Outlaws for 2015, but ended up rubberbanding back to the Voodoo before the season was out, scoring 2 more TDs on kick returns. The Voodoo (and the Outlaws) were taken over by the league before the conclusion of the season.
I had gotten a few customs I had made autographed by players in the league over Twitter. Impressed with Beaver’s play in the finale against San Antonio I created this custom of him and asked him if he’d like one, to which he gleefully signed this one for me in about 2 weeks.
Celebrating the game, the players, the cards, and the autographs for over 25 years.