Tag Archives: pasadena riders

Jennings, Greg

Card: Absolute Memorabilia 2011
Acquired: TTM 2011, C/o The Green Bay Packers
Sent: 12/22/11   Received: 1/17/12    (26 days)

Very quietly since being taken in 2006, Greg Jennings has established himself as the best receiver and arguably the best offensive player in that draft. Greg’s college career was solid and his statistics showed it, with 3 seasons tallying over 1,000 yards receiving playing for the Western Michigan University Broncos squad. The Packers would nab him with the 52nd pick of the second round, of a draft that included names such as: Mario Williams, Vince Young, Matt Leinart, Reggie Bush, Santonio Holmes, Jay Cutler, and Vernon Davis.
With his rookie season out of the way, starting in 11 games, Jennings caught 45 balls for 632 yards and 3 TDs, from gunslinger Brett Favre. In 2007, Jennings tallied an even stronger Sophomore campaign, lodging 920 yards on 53 receptions. Even more impressive was his redzone number of 12 touchdown catches.
As Favre left Green Bay for greener pastures with the Jets in 2008, Greg would establish immediate rapport with quarterback Aaron Rodgers and not miss a beat, hauling in a career high 80 catches, for 1292 yards and 9 touchdowns that season. In 2009, Greg had another 1000+ yard season, before his  2010 watershed season  with 76 receptions, 1265 yards and another 12 tds. While 2011 proved to be a slightly off season with the emergence of Jordy Nelson, Jennings still managed to help take his team to the playoffs with a 15-1 record.

Among his accomplishments are being named to the rookie AP team in 2006, the ProBowl for 2010 and 2011, and winning SuperBowl XLV in 2010 making 2 td grabs in the contest. At 5′ 11″, 198, Jennings has velcro like hands and has developed into one of the most dangerous and complete receivers to emerge over the last 5 seasons. He’d also be a member my fantasy football team, the Pasadena Riders, (that had a good component of receivers from the NFC North) as my team qualified for the playoffs in 2010.

I typically do not send for very many current players, but make some exceptions- Jennings among them. “Do not wait until the iron is hot, but make it hot by striking,”* is the strategy I use for some players, as I’d rather get their autograph while they are signing now, than wait until they are no longer doing so, or are receiving too much fan mail to consider doing so. At this time Jennings is assaulting the Packers’ record books and will easily pass by Sterling Sharpe in the near future on the team career receiving carts.

I must say though, I really liked Absolute’s approach in 2011. Wonderful tint job, and nice gold lining to the simple design, however I am not keen on the fade, which seems all the rage with the card designers at the moment. The back of the card is standard enough, but there’s the boring strategy of repeating the photo again from the front, however I do like the more personal bio lines. Overall Panini’s 2011 Absolute Memorabilia is a strong card that absorbs autographs well.

*-W.B. Yeats

Johnson, Andre

Cards: Score 2009 Franchise,Score 2009, Apex 2010
Acquired: TTM 2009,2011, Texans Blitz

With the 3rd pick of the 2003 draft, the Houston Texans select: Charles Rogers, WR ,Michigan State. One shudders when they think that the Houston Texans draft could’ve gone down like this. With Carson Palmer being a slam dunk to the Bengals, the question now was: What would the Lions do? Leading up to the draft, the Lions (who were embarking on a love affair with wide receivers under Matt Millen) and the Texans, held the #2 and #3 overall draft cards respectively. Both teams desperately needed a wide receiver. The Lions fell in love with Rogers, who had drawn comparisons to Randy Moss and made the pick.  The Texans hopped, skipped and jumped to the podium to grab Johnson with the #3 pick. Andre has become one of the most feared and consistent receivers in the NFL since then, while Rogers is no longer in the league and is widely considered a bust.

While narrowly missing 1000 yards his rookie season in 2003, Johnson asserted himself almost immediately as the team’s #1 receiver and a solid blue chip establishing a solid rapport with starting quarterback David Carr. He’d set multiple team records for the young franchise that season. His 2004 was more impressive as he grabbed 79 balls for over 1100 yards and 6 TDs. Andre would be named to his first ProBowl after that season. 2005 would be a disappointment for Johnson as an injury would largely decimate his season and he’d finish with 688 yards, but 2006 he’d return to form shattering all the receiving records for the Texans again with 103 catches and 1147 yards.  Andre in 2007 would miss a good portion of the season again to injury- but he’d quickly return to form and made a career high 8 touchdown grabs working with new quarterback Matt Schaub. (Over the last 4 seasons, since Matt Schaub joined the team, Andre Johnson has averaged nearly 100 yards per game.) 2008  would be bellweather season for Andre, making over 100 grabs again, and over 1500 yards receiving, but his 2009 would be even more amazing duplicating the 1500 yard effort and 100 catches. He’d also snag a career high 9 td grabs.  Johnson would join Jerry Rice as the only players to lead the NFL in back to back seasons in both catches and yards. 2010, would see a nagging ankle injury from week 2 slow him down, causing the prolific receiver to miss 3 games, but still log 86 catches and over 1200 yards receiving.

I always draft the soft-spoken Johnson whenever I can. In 2009, I had both Johnson and Schaub handcuffing each other for additional points, grabbing Andre in the back end of the first round and Schaub in the 5th. As of the time of this post, I am still awaiting a blitz of autographs from the team that include Johnson. The Apex card was part of a set of cards I designed from the Topps website, and I used Photoshop to make Andre look like he was in the Pasadena Riders uniform.

G/Gs 115    Rec 673   Yds  9164  Avg 13.6    Td 50     Lg 77t