Tag Archives: New York Jets

Ellard, Henry (2)

Cards: Fleer 1990, GameDay 1992
Acquired: TTM 2015, C/o Home
Sent: 3/13   Received: 3/26  (13 days)
See Also: Henry Ellard

Henry Ellard gets no respect. At the time of retirement the highly decorated wide receiver was ranked 3rd all time in NFL history with 814 receptions and 13,777 yards. To boot he also had 65 receiving TDs, 15,718 total yards from scrimmage, and cracked the 1K barrier receiving 7 times. Still thanks to a logger jam at the position – even from Ram receivers from a different generation (Torry Holt, Issac Bruce), Ellard has not gotten the nod that he deserves to be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Henry enjoys coaching and has been doing it for sometime now at both the pro and at the high school level.

Great cards here of Henry.  I love the Fleer 1990 card of him leaning through the shot. Forget the fact that its obviously a warmup shot with his chinstrap undone. The yellow border helps frame the image well, and the ink of the autograph took to this card well. Ellard has a superb autograph with a unique ‘H’ and strong loops. It goes beyond saying that his signature also receives high marks for legibility and care.  The GameDay 1992 is a nice shot of Ellard going up for a grab. Graying out the background is a nice touch to get the subject to jump off the canvas. Now that takes all of 30 minutes and a mask to do in Photoshop, but back in the early 90s- it was still a creative feat.

After failing on Henry numerous times, I was able to track him down and knock him off on these two cards.  Other fans followed my initial request, with some abusing him for 8-10 autographs per request. As evidenced in the past, within a year he was returning mail and/or had moved on to a new location.

Humphery, Bobby (2)

Cards: Topps 1985, Topps 1987, Pro Set WLAF 1991 Update
Acquired: TTM 2017, C/o Home
Sent:  5/31   Received:  6/14  (15 days)
See Also: Bobby Humphery

Bobby Humphery was an enforcer for the San Antonio Riders during their 1992 season. Selected in the 11th round of the WLAF draft, he really provided veteran leadership to the young defensive backs. The Riders pass defense was ranked first in the league that year, and they were one of the few teams that could go toe to toe with the eventual World League Champion Sacramento Surge and a key reason for that was Bobby.

It was a shame that Pro Set pulled the plug on their WLAF set for the 1992 season. While Ultimate and Wild Card filled the vacancy as best as they could peppering  their sets with veterans and rookies, for some reason they both omitted the highly decorated Humphery.  I had to look hard to find any photography of Hump from his days in the WLAF.

Apparently he noticed that too, so when Bobby received the custom card I created he wrote me an extremely nice thank-you note.

Thank you Lee, for the Rider cards. I always wanted these cards but I could never find them. I will honor these.” – Bobby Humphery

The custom WLAF 1991 entry that I made of him was based off of a Gameday Magazine I had from that 1992 that was sold during the season finale. In the team notes, frequently they’d have a photo or small blurb about a player who has really made a difference on the team. The last one had this grainy black and white shot of Bobby. Although I have found other images on the web, I have not been able to find a suitable enough image, so I decided to go ahead and work with this image in Photoshop.  It came out decently enough for a colorized and fuzz adjusted image.  While I wasn’t entirely happy with my printer, it was satisfactory enough that I thought Bobby would appreciate it.  He also included a signed copy of his Topps 1985 rookie card as well as thanks for the additional copies of the Riders cards I gave him.

Among Bobby’s greatest NFL accomplishments is that he led the NFL in 1984 with 22 kick returns for 675 yards and a 97 yard touchdown. He also had 8 kick returns for 234 yards and a touchdown against the Bengals during the season finale in 1986.

Jones, John (Wesley) ‘Lam’

Cards: University of Texas Upper Deck 2011, University of Texas Upper Deck 2011 ATA, University of Texas 2011 NCAA, University of Texas 2011 Icons
Acquired: IP 1/21/2017, Houston Sports Collectibles Show- Waco, TX

An impressive track man with fleet caliber speed, Johnny ‘Lam’ Jones was a deep bomb threat at the University of Texas from 1976-1979.  Originally a runningback, Lam was switched to receiver in 1977 when coaches were blown away by his speed.  Case in point, Jones was part of a 4×100 relay team for the United States, that won gold in Montreal in 1976.  In 1977 he demonstrated his speed recording 21 catches for 543 yards, a whopping 25.9 yards per grab, and 7 TDs.  He finished his career at UT with 156 carries for 850 yards and 6 TDs, to go along with 85 receptions for 1603 yards and 14 TDs. Jones was also a capable kick returner with 28 kick returns for 589 yards and a TD.

The New York Jets were enamored with Jones’ speed and big play ability, and traded up in the 1980 draft to the #2 overall spot to grab him. It was a stiff price to pay, and while Lam averaged a healthy 16.8 yards per grab over his career, the price tag was too much for NY to bear.  John’s best season came in 1983 when he caught 43 balls for 734 yards and 4 TDs.  His career was defined by trauma, as in 4 consecutive seasons it was ended by some sort of malaise.  He’d be cut in 1986 and retire.

Jones descended into darkness. Drug and alcohol abuse, and bad decisions really impacted his life. It took many years for Lam to climb out.  Lam found focus in his life and dedicated himself to helping others avoid the same problems he encountered through public speaking.

John was really nice to fans at the Collectible Show in Waco. He and I talked at lengths about how Austin and I-35 had changed. While he discussed with me his Myeloma Cancer and the fact that his doctor told him in 2005 he’d be dead in a year in a half- indeed the cancer has returned and he is no longer in remission. He really liked the icons card that I had of his, and I agreed to send him one to keep.

I don’t mind long drives for autographs. In fact this one seemed close enough at a click over 100 miles. The drives are always purifying to me- something that clears my mind, with a reward pegged at the end. This drive was particularly interesting as it took me an alternative route from Bastrop to Temple and through places like Bartlett and Little River. It was a bit off the beaten path, but I felt like my own explorer in a strange land.  I had never been to the Texas Sports Hall of Fame where this signing was at, but it was woefully short on Houston Oilers history, and long enough to display memorabilia from KS Bud Adams.  It’s worth a look see at least once for fans and casuals alike.

G/Gs 61/38     Rec 138    Yds 2322    Avg 16.8     TD  13    LG 55