Cards: ProSet 1991 Legends, Score Supplemental 1989
Acquired: TTM 2018, C/o Home
Sent: 10/20 Received: 10/27 (7 days)
During the Jurassic Period of football, there were some absolute beasts of defenders that took the league by storm in the 70s. One of them was Carl Hairston, a little known defensive lineman prospect out of UMES or (University of Maryland Eastern Shore). He played on some terrible teams during college, which allowed him to really hone his game. Hairston was named to the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference team 3 times. In his final year with the team, he posted 147 tackles and 15 sacks, good enough to get noticed by the Philadelphia Eagles, who selected Carl in the 7th round of the 1976 draft.
He’d make the squad and in fact lead the NFL in sacks in 1979 (unofficially) with 15. Then in 1980, he’d help champion the defense that got the Eagles to Super Bowl XV. Injuries began to slow Hairston down in 1983, and soon thereafter he’d be traded to the Cleveland Browns, where he’d be a mainstay on the line until 1989. He’d finish his career in Phoenix the following season.
Carl has an extensive coaching resume at the Pro level, and has seen stops in the NFL (Phoenix, KC, St Louis, and Green Bay), UFL (Florida, Omaha), and CFL (British Columbia). He earned a Super Bowl ring as the defensive line coach for the St. Louis Rams (Super Bowl XXXIV).
Carl is another one of these players who should probably be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. A dominant lineman during his time, unofficially he has 1,141 tackles and 94 sacks to his name in 184 starts.
Both of these are really nice cards of Carl. I almost feel like they are nods to him out of respect- like these card companies knew he was long in the tooth but they still wanted to pay him respects with their brand of card. The ProSet Legends 1991 card is an absolute gem. Merv Corning can make a player standing on the sideline look exciting, and this highly detailed image is no different with its nicks and bumps. It’s a fine card with excellent minimal design- which screams classy. The Score Supplemental 1989 had always been floating around my doubles box, so I had been kicking around the idea of getting it autographed for sometime. It’s unique because it’s obviously a special teams shot, but he’s just sort of popping up in a sea of helmets.
Cards: Topps 1983, Topps 1985
Acquired: 2012, Akron Acquisition
See Also: Neil Lomax
I think I’m just going to refer to it as ‘The Neil Lomax Curse’. Since Lomax led the lowly Cardinals back to some semblance of respectability in the mid-1980s the franchise has been for the most part (outside of a few seasons here and there with Kurt Warner, Carson Palmer, and Jake Plummer) has never really had a consistent franchise QB at the helm. You know, that consistent leader that they could lean on for 5-7 years? – Amazingly it just hasn’t happened. While it is shocking how many QBs Cleveland has gone through, Arizona has done in many QBs in its own right. In fact, statistically speaking, I could make an argument for Neil being the greatest quarterback the Cardinals have ever had.
As far as cards go, Topps 1985 was so different than what Topps had ever done that people still today see it as a pinnacle of card design. I think it really epitomized the 80s with large bold type set on its side fighting with the photo for command of the canvas. Like the 80s it screamed, “Larger than life.” While this Topps 1983 just bored my pants off initially, it was a step in a different direction for Topps than in previous years. The marquee is minimally invasive and the team name placed eloquently on the image- in an era well before Photoshop, this took a fair amount of work.
One of the Akron Acquisition, I got these autographs off of a friend who was exiting the hobby. I paid a few extra bucks as a premium to help him out, and I hope that he has been able to put his life back together.
Cards: GameDay 1992, Classic 1992
Acquired: TTM 2015, C/o Home
Sent: 12/9 Received: 12/23 (14 days)
See Also: Tommy Jeter
Wow… and with that Tommy Jeter vaults into the top 5 worst autographs I’ve ever seen. I mean don’t get me wrong… I’m happy and all that the Longhorn Legend signed these 2 cards for me, but this autograph is not really legible and they don’t really match at all. I guess I can make out a loop for ‘J’ and the hook at the front of the signature could count as a ‘T’ but this is a far cry from what I originally got from him at Eagles Training Camp back in 1994. I wanted to get Tommy on these two additional cards I had for years. The Gameday 1992 was probably my favorite outside of the Star Pics entry and the Classic I couldn’t pass up since it’s a great action shot.
Really, this was more like a failure and then success, but when I get the RTS and I’m able to flip it right back out to a new address- I just count them one and the same. Jeter is a family man now. He’s a huge fan of his kids who are all involved in sports at some level. As of 2017, Tommy is a Regional Manager for ACME Brick Co.