Tag Archives: montreal alouettes

Polian, Bill

Cards: Topps AAF 2019 Custom, Panini 2016 HOF
Acquired: TTM 2019, C/o Home
Sent: 11/2 Received: 11/12 (10 days)

Bill Polian has a long and storied career as a football executive that spans across 4 leagues: The NFL, CFL, USFL, and the AAF.

After graduating from NYU in 1964, Polian began his careeer as a scout for the Chiefs in 1978. He also spent time with the Blue Bombers and Alouettes in the CFL as well working his way up to Personnel Director. A one year stint in the USFL Chicago Blitz in 1984, led Polian back to the NFL. He’d then begin a long and storied career with the Buffalo Bills later that year as the Pro Personnel Director. He’d help transform the Bills into an NFL powerhouse laying the foundation for the franchise to appear in 3 consecutive Super Bowls. He was released by the team after they lost their 3rd Super Bowl in 92.

A 3 year hiatus saw Polian return to the NFL with a vengeance as GM of the expansion Carolina Panthers. He was able to assemble enough talent that the franchise posted a expansion record 7 wins in 1995, and an even more impressive 12 wins in 1996. After a down year in 97, Bill joined the Indianapolis Colts as General Manager.

His first move was a no brainer: Selecting Peyton Manning with the first overall pick of the 1998 NFL Draft. Later he’d hire Tony Dungy to coach the franchise, and the rest is history. After the reorganization of the divisions in 2002, the Colts would dominate the South- winning 7 divisional titles under his watch. Indianapolis appeared in two Superbowls winning XLI. He’d not be retained after the 2011 season.

In the meantime he began to roll in the accolades, being inducted into the Buffalo Wall of Fame in 2012, the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2015, and the Colts Ring of Honor in 2017.

Bill felt the siren’s lure and resurfaced again in 2018, where he signed up to be Head of Football of the upstart Alliance of American Football, co founding it alongside Charlie Ebersol. The league was able to pull off 8 weeks of football before it collapsed due to financial strain. Bill Polian was greatly disappointed in the failure of the AAF and in chief financial cow Tom Dundon who pulled the plug.

I wrote to Bill after creating a dead on custom of the Topps AAF certified card. Thanks to COVID I had to find a new custom printer. The card quality was outstanding, but I didn’t prep the high gloss card, so the autograph didn’t stick properly to the card. He also signed this Panini HOF card for me as well.

Guerra, Fabian

Cards: Topps AAF 2019, Arena Custom
Acquired: TTM 2020, C/o Home
Sent: 4/15 Received: 5/2 (16 days)

Fabian Guerra played at Division II Fairmont University, where he set the standard at wide receiver for many of the school’s career statistical charts. Over his four years from 2013-2016, Fabian posted 233 catches for 2,805 receiving yards and 20 touchdowns. He was not selected in the 2017 NFL Draft, so he elected to join the National Arena League’s Carolina Cobras. He’d post 70 catches for 818 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns in his rookie year.

In 2018, Fabian joined the Memphis Express of the AAF. He’d make the final roster and start at receiver, but after an overall disastrous opener for the entire offense, he’d be cut. As the Express had offensive issues across the board, he’d be brought back late in the season, but finish with only one catch on the season.

His rights in the meantime had passed to the Arena Football League’s Columbus Destroyers in 2019. Fabian joined the league and earned Rookie of the Year Honors from the AFL, posting 61 receptions for 765 yards and 15 TDs. He also displayed a knack on returns posting 3 TDs on 39 returns (736 yards).

After the Arena Football League ended, Fabian was signed by the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League for the 2020 season, but ultimate due to the Covid pandemic- had his career put on hold as the CFL cancelled the season.

Fabian has a pretty active Twitter account and gave away a couple of his cards to his fans. I missed out on that one but thankfully Mark’s Signing Bonus came through again and helped me out with the address. Guerra signed his AAF card and dropped in his custom for me, and wrote me a nice handwritten note for being a fan.

Pierson-El, De’Mornay

Card: Topps AAF 2019
Acquired: TTM 2019, C/o The Oakland Raiders
Sent: 4/9 Received: 12/5 (240 days)

An electric player while at Nebraska, De’Mornay Pierson-El, played for the Cornhuskers from 2014-2017. Over that period the team tried hard to get the ball into his hands any way possible, whether it was rushing, receiving or punt returning. In 2014 he returned 3 punts for touchdowns, on 34 returns (596 yards), and in 2017 he had a career high 623 yards receiving on 45 catches (5 TDs).

After the 2018 NFL Draft, Pierson-El was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Washington Redskins. He then joined the Montreal Allouetttes briefly the next month, before finally landing on the squad of the AAF Salt Lake City Stallions. De’Mornay had a solid year for the Stallions leading the way for the wide receivers with 36 catches for 414 yards, a 2 point conversion, and a TD. (That TD marked the first score of the season at home for the Stallions.) His best game came against the San Diego Fleet, where Pierson-el posted 9 catches for 130 yards.

De’Mornay signed with the Raiders after the league fell apart. Following waiver wire reports like a hawk, I sent this to him immediately after he signed with the Raiders. He has been on and off the squad, which discouraged me from ever seeing this again, In fact Pierson-El was drafted by the St. Louis Battlehawks of the XFL 2020, but before he joined the team, he resigned with the Raiders again. It was at that point I guess he decided to pen this card and I received this one back only after a scant 240 days.