Tag Archives: los angeles rams

Spruce, Nelson


Card: Sage 2016
Acquired: 2016, Box Breaker

The Colorado Buffallos have a had little to cheer about in football recently with the emergence of guys like Paul Richardson. Spruce benefited from the departure of the speedy receiver, and set school records with 106 catches and 12 touchdowns, along with 1,198 receiving yards. It was enough to earn Spruce Second Team All-Pac-12 honors in 2014.   A good route runner with soft hands, Spruce reminds me mostly of former Texans receiver Kevin Walter.  While his skills are undeniable, his lack of straight line speed is an issue for scouts clocking a 4.59 40, but he could quickly move in as a slot guy or a possession receiver who works special teams as a punt returner.  After a poor showing at the combine, Nelson was marked with a 3rd day rating, but eventually went undrafted. I thought he held potential for a team like the Texans or Patriots, but eventually Spruce signed a free agent contract with the Los Angeles Rams.

Spruce impressed the team well enough that he made the squad, but he was buried on the depth chart.  He’d be injured and spend a good portion of the season on IR, but was activated for the final game of the season versus the Cardinals.

Lossow, Rodney

ultwlaf92 rlossow

Card: Ultimate WLAF 1992
Acquired: TTM 2015, C/o Work
Sent:  12/28/15     Received: 1/14/16    (17 days)

Originally a  10th round selection of the New England Patriots during the 1988 draft, Rodney Lossow earned All Big 10 Honorable Mention as a Junior while at Wisconsin. He’d bounce around with the Los Angeles Rams and Calgary Stampeders, before being selected with the 4th pick of the 4th round during the WLAF offensive lineman draft. He’d anchor the Orlando Thunder‘s  offensive line at Center through their appearance in World Bowl II in 1992.

Rodney loves teaching and has been a coach at Roosevelt High School in Minnesota for many years. He responded in under a month and included a nice note. Apparently his kids were blown away that he got a TTM request. He also inscribed the card with a bible verse:

16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Lansford, Mike

to90 mlansfordCards: Topps 1990, ProSet 1989, ProSet 1990
Acquired: TTM 2015, C/o Work
Sent: 11/16/15     Received: 2/1/16 (77 days)
Failure: 2014, C/o Home

With the amazing mustache, mullet, and barefoot kicking style, Mike Lansford was a great compliment for the LA Rams look. A California native, who kicked in college for Washington and Pasadena CC (CA), before being selected by the New York Giants in the 12th round of the 1980 NFL draft. Unable to make the team, he had tryouts with the Raiders and 49ers and then finally landed on the Rams roster in 1982 where he played in 9 games and went 9 of 15 on field goals.  His best season came in 1984, going 25 of 33 on field goals. He then had solid seasons in 1988 and 1989. With the Ernie Zampese offensive machine in full swing Mike led the league in 1989 with an astounding (at the time) 51 extra points made and scoring a career high 120 points.

pset89 mlansford

Lansford ran into contract issues with Rams management that year. He was being paid a pittance based on his performance and vested years in the league. Mike could’ve held out, but instead out of good faith, came in and kicked for the team anyway while they negotiated a new deal with his agent. The Rams came back with a salary that put him near to slightly above the league average, but the kicker rebuffed the team.  In October, he and the team put it all behind them as he signed a 2 year deal.  While Lansford’s 1990 was considered a down year, in short, it was still a banner year by most kicker’s standards.

pset90 mlansfordLansford has been quoted as saying that, “He wanted to kick for the Rams until his toe turned blue.”, but unfortunately all good things must come to an end.  He signed with the Cleveland Browns for the 1991 season, losing out to Matt Stover for the job.  Mike is the All-Time leading scorer in Los Angeles Rams history, and was an outstanding kicker when the game was on the line, never missing a game winning kick.  In at least 8 contests he put away the opposing team with ice in his veins.

I had been wanting to get the iconic kicker for sometime on a few cards, and was disappointed when I missed out on him TTM back in 2014.   He is involved in kicking camps for kids, where I finally got a response from him early in 2016. A big time LA Rams fan, Lansford attended the city rally to bring back the Rams, where he was quoted as saying that, “I bleed blue and gold, just like you guys do!”, to a cheering crowd.

G 124     XPA 325    XPM 315
FGA 217   FGM  158   PCT 72.8%    LG 52     PTS 789