Cards: Topps 1970, Topps 1971
Acquired: TTM 2015, C/o Home
Sent: 12/30/15 Received: 1/7/16 (8 days)
Jerry LeVias went on to play in the AFL and NFL, but is also recognized as a pioneer, breaking segregation in the SWC, playing for the SMU Mustangs. It was not easy for Jerry, as he faced constant harassment. LeVias made them pay though as he was a 3 time All-SWC selection from 1966-1968. His best year came in 1968 when he caught 80 passes for 1131 yards and 8 touchdowns. Jerry finished his career at SMU with 155 receptions for 2275 yards and 22 TDs.
In 1969 Jerry was drafted by the Houston Oilers and led the NFL his rookie season in all purpose yards with 1946 yards, and punt returns with 35 for 292 yards. He also chipped in a career high 42 receptions for 696 yards and 5 TDs, including a league leading long 86 yard TD. Jerry’s 1946 yards consisted of nearly half the team’s total yardage. He’d earn a Pro Bowl trip after the season and Rookie of the Year honors. In 1970, he finished with 1377 yards from scrimmage, but Jerry was already preparing himself for life after football.
LeVias was traded to the San Diego Chargers in 1971. He’d have his final season with over a 1000 all purpose yards, but the constant pounding his small frame (5’8″, 165) was taking its toll. Jerry retired after the 1974 season.
As of 2015 Jerry serves as a Houston Texans Ambassador. He’s been honored with inductions into the Gulf Coast Hall of Fame, College Football Hall of Fame, and the Texas Sports Hall of Fame. A few years ago I went to the Kickoff at Kemah in Houston during a tropical storm. An early rumor placed LeVias at the Texans event, but in the end it was three other ambassadors. I decided to go ahead and shoot some cards out to him instead. Luckily he signed these two classic Topps cards.
G/Gs 70/35 Rec 144 Yds 2139 Avg 14.9 Td 14 Lg 86T
Rush 19 Yds 161 Avg 8.5 Td 0 Lg 38
KR 94 Yds 2213 Avg 23.5 Td 0 Lg 87
PR 35 Yds 687 Avg 7.8 Td 0 Lg 46