Cards: Action Packed 1990, Action Packed 1991, GameDay 1992
Acquired: TTM 2018, C/o New Jerusalem House of God
Sent: 1/13 Received: 3/17 (64 days)*
See Also: Irving Fryar
* Donation Enclosed
I had seen a fair amount of TTM returns coming in for Irving Fryar for a nominal donation. Armed with a few extra cards I always wanted to get autographed, I decided to give him another shot.
To be honest, things have been rough for Fryar since his playing days, as he has been in and out of trouble with the law for mortgage fraud. He was released in 2016 after serving 8 months in prison.
GameDay and Action Packed were among the most gimmicky of the early 90s cards you could get, but early on they rewarded you with outstanding action shots of your favorite players. I couldn’t decide between these 3 cards, so I went ahead and sent all three out and took a shot. I really liked the GameDay card. It’s impactful and the framing is deliberate and precise. You can feel that Fryar is right at the moment of making that catch. The Action Packed 1991 is a very nice profile picture taken and framed at just the right size. While the 1990 Action Packed card does nothing to stand out from his other cards, it is a rarity to see- little less to have autographed.
Card: Action Packed Rookies 1992
Acquired: 2017, Trade
See Also: Eugene Chung
Eugene since his playing days has slowly edged into coaching throughout the pro tree working with current Eagles head coach Doug Pederson, and also respectable offensive line coaches Juan Castillo and Howard Mudd . From 2010-2012 his title with the Eagles was Assistant Offensive Line Coach. He served in the same capacity with the Chiefs from 2013-2015. Afterwards Chung rejoined the Eagles under Pederson and now serves as the Assistant Offensive Line Coach/ Tight Ends/ Run Game Coach.
I had considered sending out this card to Eugene for sometime as I needed it for the set, but something else always came up. D-Rock, a respectable collector from Sportscollectors.net remembered that I was an Action Packed fan from years ago, and out of the blue offered to send me one for free. He said that the person who originally got the autograph was going to throw it out because there was a slight smear. (That’s just terrible.) We both agreed that it’d be something that we’d add to our collections regardless. It just so happened that he also wanted one of the Hart Lee Dykes autographs I got. The cards that were returned to me were not mine and I wasn’t particularly attached to the Upper Deck 1991 (it’s a terrible photo) so I offered to send it in exchange for Eugene’s autograph. It meant a lot to me that he remembered me and I was glad to trade him this card he needed for his set as well.
Card: Wild Card 1991
It’s a small world. My family had been harassing me about getting a new insurance agent for a while, so I decided to take my father-in-law’s advice and check out his insurance agent at State Farm. It turned out that it was none other than Blake Miller, former offensive lineman. He came up to work to pitch me on life insurance and other amenities that State Farm offered and we ended up talking about football and the upcoming Super Bowl. He was cheering on the Patriots because he was a former member of the team. We then talked about the good old days of football. I told him that I was a football enthusiast and autograph card collector and he dropped this bad boy out to me in the mail. (He was really amazed at the depth of knowledge I had for many of his former teammates from that era- especially the early 1990s Patriots.)
Blake Miller played for LSU in college. He was a two year starter and letterman for the Tigers at center. A 7th round pick of the New England Patriots in 1991, he started a career high 5 games for the Detroit Lions in 1992 (played in 12), before finishing his career with the New York Giants in 1993. Post NFL, and pre-insurance, Blake climbed the coaching ranks. A seasoned positional coach, he saw fruitful stints at Rice, Texas State, and Northwestern State.