Card: Sage 2017
Acquired: 2017, Box Breaker
Shelton Gibson played in the Big 12 for the West Virginia Mountaineers from 2014-2016. An interesting prospect that reminded scouts of a poor man’s DeSean Jackson, Gibson put up 84 receptions for 1,898 yards and 17 TDs in 3 years. He finished with a guady 22.6 average yards per reception. After trading down twice during the 5th round the Philadelphia Eagles selected him with the 166th pick overall in the 2017 NFL Draft.
It was a hard charge uphill for Gibson to make the roster, but each and every day he made incremental improvements that coaches took notice of. Shelton battled a case of the dropsies during the preseason, but coaches feel that there is something developmentally there the Eagles can work with. He got on the field briefly during Philadelphia’s 2017 Super Bowl Championship run and caught 2 his first two passes for 11 yards against the Cowboys.
Card: SPX 2002 Rated Rookies (229/650)
Acquired: 2017, EBay
Failure: 2011, C/o The Washington Redskins
Jabar Gaffney was a talent who left it all on the field for the Florida Gators back in 2000 and 2001. In both years he had almost 1200 yards and over 10 TDs receiving. He declared for the 2002 NFL draft and was selected at the top of round 2 by the Houston Texans expansion squad. It was expected that Gaffney would become young quarterback David Carr‘s preferred target as they’d grow together as an up and coming talent. Among receivers looking back, his selection was a fair one. He’d finish 2nd in total WR yardage in an otherwise lackluster class.
Jabar caught only 1 TD his rookie season, in a week 6 snoozer against the Buffalo Bills. The following week he’d record his first and only professional TD throw against the Cleveland Browns. In total that rookie year, Jabar had 483 yards on 41 catches. Later in 2004 Gaffney had his best season as a Texan with 632 yards on 41 receptions. In 2005, the Texans experimented with utilizing Gaffney as more of an inline receiver. He’d make 55 receptions, but as David Carr regressed, so did the Texans record. The entire team from the front office down was fired and a new regime was brought in. Jabar was a free agent.
Gaffney found a home with the Philadelphia Eagles, but was a surprise cut before the beginning of the season.
He’d then sign with New England where he’d play for the Patriots over the next 3 seasons. In 2007 he’d have a career high 5 TD receptions. Jabar then signed with the Denver Broncos in 2009. In two seasons with the franchise he’d post near career highs in receptions (54, 65) and yards (732, 875). He’d be headhunted by the Redskins for 2011, again posting career highs in receptions (68) and yards (947) and tied his career high with 5 TDs. Jabar returned to the Patriots, but was cut shortly there after. He later signed with the Dolphins, but ran into legal trouble. Miami cut him and Gaffney was unable to resuscitate his career.
In 2016 he was arrested in Jacksonville for marijuana. Gaffney has attempted to remain low key otherwise, despite some run ins with the law.
G/Gs 158/103 Rec 447 Yds 5690 Avg 12.7 Td 24 Lg 69
Cards: TNT Signature Select, Topps 1971
Acquired: TTM 2017, C/o The Tennessee Titans
Sent: 1/19/17 Received: 1/27/17 (8 days)
To say that Dick LeBeau has a decorated football history would be an understatement. After playing both halfback and defensive back in college, LeBeau was moved to cornerback fulltime when he entered the NFL. Selected by the Cleveland Browns in 1959, LeBeau did not make the squad and was quickly snatched up by the Detroit Lions. The rest is history. The Lions already had an outstanding secondary. LeBeau was icing on the cake. He arguably became one of the best players in Detroit history (at least defensively) recording 62 interceptions for 762 yards and 3 TDs. He earned 3 ProBowl trips from 1964-1966 and AP in 1964, 1965, and 1970.
Retiring from play after the 72 season, LeBeau immediately jumped into coaching, working as a special teams coach for the Eagles from 1973-1975. From there he honed his skills as a positional coach with the defensive backs for the Packers (1976-1979) and Bengals (1980-1983). Dick was promoted to defensive coordinator for Cincinnati in 1984- a position he held until 1991. In 1992 he joined the Steelers as a defensive backs coach, and in 1995 was elevated to defensive coordinator. LeBeau returned to the Bengals in 1997 and was head coach for the franchise from 2000-2002. After a brief stay on the Bills in 2003 LeBeau returned to the Steelers as their defensive coordinator from 2004-2014, and then off to the Tennessee Titans as their coordinator where he coaches to this day (2017). LeBeau was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the Pride of the Lions in 2010.
Dick LeBeau is one of the most reliable high profile TTM signers in the hobby today. I think I had taken it for granted for a long time, but I finally decided to take a shot at him in 2017. Part of the reason for my delay was the lack of decent cards of him. Frankly most of the cards that were on the market were quite bad looking, or were just plain expensive. LeBeau’s turnaround was quite quick signing this old beat up Topps card and my custom in about a week flat.
G/GS N/a Tac N/a Sac N/a Fum N/a
Int 62 Yds 762 Avg 12.2 TD 3 Lg 70t