Tag Archives: ottawa rough riders

Britton, Eddie ‘Flash’

Card: Wild Card WLAF 1992
Acquired: TTM 2019, C/o Home
Sent: 8/7 Received: 8/26 (19 days)

Playing for tiny Central College (OH) Eddie Britton finished with 58 receptions for 1,081 yards and 13 TDs. Known for his liquid speed, Eddie had been clocked at an unheard of 4.26 40. He’d be signed by the Indianapolis Colts and allocated to the World League Enhancement Program for the 1992 season.

Eddie joined the Fire, where he caught 18 passes for 277 yards and a 56 yard TD, and rushed 9 times for 53 yards. He also returned kicks as well, posting a gaudy 23 returns for 558 yards (24.3 average). His 908 total yards from scrimmage quietly led the team. After the season, Eddie took his toolsets North to the CFL.

Eddie spent the next 4 years in the league from 1993-1996 playing for Calgary, Baltimore, Birmingham, the Ottawa Rough Riders and finally the Hamilton Tiger-Cats. His best season came in 1995 for the Barracudas, when he caught 49 passes for 681 yards and 4 TDs.

As of late I have found my passion for finding former World League players reignited by the failure of the Alliance. I was able to scrap together Eddie’s personal information through various sources and look him up through advancedbackgroundchecks.com. Within a month he signed his card and included a nice note wishing me well.

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1827715.4156T
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2355824.3045
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6986912.6571
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453016.7033

Gray, Michael

Card: CFL All-World 1991
Acquired: IP 2019, San Antonio Commanders vs Salt Lake City Stallions

A few days before the game I looked over the coaching roster of the Stallions again, and with that I found the veritable gem in Michael Gray. Packing his card into my stash to take to the game, I figured I could lure him over and nab him either after the half or the game. I identified him early on when he was on the field in pre-game warmups and as SLC battled SA to a standstill at the half, I was able to get his attention and flashed the card and pen. His eyebrows lifted and he mouthed to me that he’d sign after the game. After the game concluded, Gray was the last to leave and lumbered over to sign my card. He was in a hurry, but he was really nice. I told him that if SLC had half the crowd we did, with the way that defensive line he was coaching was playing, that the Stallions will beat us in Salt Lake in a few weeks. He smiled and thanked me for being a fan and left.

Mike Gray joined the BC Lions of the CFL in 1984 after he had tryouts with the Seattle Seahawks in both 83 and 84. He took the league by storm in 1985, earning All-Star Honors and CFL Most Outstanding Rookie Award that year, racking up 13 sacks and 2 interceptions. The following year (1986) Mike added another 6 sacks to his name, before being snatched up by the Ottawa Rough Riders in the league’s equalization draft for 1987. Before the 87 season began, Mike was cut, but was picked up by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

Much to both Ottawa and BC’s chagrin, Mike turned it up a notch for the Blue Bombers. From 1987 through 1989 he’d be one of the league’s most dominant defenders at defensive end averaging over 10 sacks and about 40 tackles a season. Gray played through the 1993 season, helping the Bombers to the 76th and 78th Grey Cups. During the 76th Grey Cup Mike came up with the game saving interception against his old team- the BC Lions- netting him Defensive Player of the Game Honors.

Mike has gone into coaching since his playing years ended, seeing stints in the CFL (BC Lions 1993-1994), the NFL (St. Louis Rams 1996-1997), and at the college level (Weber St. 1995, Oregon St 1997-2002, Kentucky 2003-2004, Oregon 2005-2008, UNLV 2010-2014). He was inducted into the Winnipeg Blue Bombers Hall of Fame in 2006, and in 2019 was the Defensive Line coach of the impressive Salt Lake City Stallions front.

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Skansi, Paul


Cards: Score 1991, Action Packed 1990, Topps 1990
Acquired: TTM 2017, C/o Home
Sent:  3/20    Received: 3/30   (10 days)

Paul Skansi is an interesting figure in the history of Seahawks football. I always viewed him as an important participant and observer in the growth of the sport that always seemed to fly under the radar. Skansi is a member of Seahawks- or as I knew them- the pink clad Seattle Knights of Tecmo Bowl. He then returned to play in Tecmo Super Bowl as well. In the midst of this, as the great card rush occurred during the late 80s and 90s, Skansi had numerous football cards of him produced. Now as a key role player for the team, it was surprising that Topps, Score, and even Action Packed produced cards of the tenacious receiver- but ProSet (the biggest card set of the market) did not.  I remember him in that first pack of Action Packed I ever opened, because his name is so unique.

Paul, with his impressive hands and fearless and precise route running, was quite the find for the Seahawks. A local product from the University of Washington, he was a Steve Pelluer favorite. He helped the Huskies win an improbable and exciting Apple Cup with his circus TD catch in 1981. He’d conclude his career at the college with 161 receptions – which still ranks 5th all time on the school’s record books.

Originally a 5th round pick of the Steelers in 1983, he found himself on his hometown Seahawks by 1984. There he became a valued and fearless slot man that was counted on for numerous first downs to keep the chains moving. While he was always overshadowed by the likes of Brian Blades and Steve Largent, Skansi worked best in 3rd down situations.  Initially he also saw time on punt return duties as well. He’d play the next 7 seasons in Seattle, and then briefly try his hand in the CFL with the Ottawa Rough Riders  in 1992.  Skansi’s shining moment came in a thrilling matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs in 1990. As Derrick Thomas played havoc with the Seahawks offensive line all day, Seattle’s offense hung around. In the closing moments trailing 16-10, quarterback Dave Kreig threw a bullet over the middle for 25 yards to Paul for the winning TD.

Paul since his playing days has done a lot of coaching and scouting. After coaching his way through the college ranks, Skansi has joined the Chargers where he’s been a scout for the last 17 years.  He lives outside of Seattle, and always loves to talk Huskies football.

He was kind enough to write testaments on all his cards.

Matthew 6:33
33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

Philippians 4:13
13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

Joshua 1:9
9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

He also enclosed a nice note thanking me for writing him.  As always, players like Paul are the ones I love to get the autographs from, as they always add to the memory I already have of them.

G/GS 115/2     REC 166    YDS 1950     AVG 11.7    TD 10     LG  32
PR 96       YDS  863       AVG 9.0    TD  0     LG 57