David Thomas played tight end at the University of Texas from 2002-2005. Over his 4 years at UT he caught 98 passes for 1367 yards and 15 TDs, quietly setting school marks for TEs at the school. He’d be selected in the 3rd round of the 2006 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots.
Even then the Patriots were stacked at tight end, with stalwart Benjamin Watson leading the way his rookie year. In 2007, an injury sidelined Thomas the entire year. In 2009, David was traded to the New Orleans Saints and saw his greatest success with the squad posting 35 receptions for 356 yards and a TD, with 18 of those catches going for 1st downs, in a hybrid H-Back role. New Orleans went on to notch its first Super Bowl title that year. David had another solid season for the Saints in 2010 with 30 receptions for 219 yards and 2 TDs and 11 firsts. He continued to play for the Saints, retiring after the 2012 season.
My friend Mark gets full credit for finding this one. He got a success a few months ago and shot me the address. After a few months wait David signed these cards for me. I like the Upper Deck Rookie Debut and the Leaf Rookies & Stars cards, while the Sage and Fleer were spot good looking cards.
Shaquelle Evans played for the Bruins of UCLA from 2011 to 2013, and Notre Dame in 2010. In 2012 he had 60 receptions for 877 yards and 3 TDs. He followed that up with 47 receptions for 709 yards and 9 TDs in 2013. Evans was selected in the 2014 NFL Draft by the New York Jets in the 4th round. He blew out his shoulder before he even finished training camp and spent 2014 on IR. Subsequently in 2015 he’d be waived in final cut downs.
Shaq was quickly snapped up by the Jaguars and spent the next year with the franchise on their practice squad. After a short stint on the Patriots in 2016, he joined the Cowboys in January of 2017, but later was suspended for violating the league’s drug policy.
In January of 2018, Evans joined the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the CFL and caught 50 passes for 785 yards in his rookie year with the team. He followed that up with an equally impressive 2019 catching 108 balls for 1334 yards and 5 TDs.
Braxton Berrios played 4 years for the Miami Hurricanes from 2014 to 2017 at wide receiver and punt returner. His best year came as a Senior, when he logged 55 receptions for 679 yards and 9 TDs. He finished at Miami with 100 receptions for 1175 yards and 14 TDs, to go along with 47 punt returns for 488 yards and a TD. He’d be selected in the 6th round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots with the idea of grooming him into the next slot receiving sensation.
With Julian Edelman, Philip Dorsett, Chris Hogan pretty much set at the starting spots, and Cordarrelle Patterson, Eric Decker, Kenny Britt, Malcolm Mitchell, and Jordan Matthews battling it out for scraps it looked like Berrios might the rookie caught looking in. As the preseason progressed however, the smoke cleared, and with Matthews, Mitchell, and Britt, all leaving the team before the end of the preseason, it looked like Braxton might stand a dark horse chance of making the roster and having a real impact. Injuries too impacted Braxton’s tape during the preseason- and ultimately he’d end his rookie season on IR. He’d be cut after training camp in 2019, but quickly scooped up by the New York Jets. On the season he’d make 6 catches for 115 yards including a 69 yard long, while returning kicks (4 for 48 yards) and punts (21 for 240 yards) for the Jets.
OK. Gotta give Panini credit on this card. It is a really nice one. Braxton’s face is really clear in this image, and colors are all spot on. A highly slanted autograph with really pronounced ‘B’s, Braxton’s autograph even compliments this canvas well.
Celebrating the game, the players, the cards, and the autographs for over 25 years.