Tag Archives: pittsburgh steelers

Blizzard, Bobby

CARD: Hamburg Sea Devils Team Issue 2005
ACQUIRED: 2022, Private Acquisition

CAREER SNAPSHOT:

  • Bobby Blizzard played TE for Kentucky in 1999-00 posting 30 receptions for 275 yards.
  • Transferred to North Carolina, and after sitting out a year, played for the Tar Heels in in 2002 and 03.
  • Led the team in ’02 with 28 receptions for 440 yards and 5 TDs and garnered national attention for positional watch lists.
  • Felled by viral meningitis during senior year, impacting his numbers.
  • Finished college career with 78 receptions for 876 yards and 6 TDs.
  • Went undrafted in the 2004 NFL Draft, but signed as a free agent by the Pittsburgh Steelers.
  • After being cut, was signed by the Cardinals.
  • Assigned to the NFLE, Blizzard played for the Hamburg Sea Devils.
  • Caught 34 passes for 335 yards and 2 TDs.
  • Returned to the Cardinals but was injured and released.
  • Signed by the Baltimore Ravens late in the year and was on the team’s practice squad through mid-06.
  • Had an outstanding year in Europa playing for the Cologne Centurions in 2007, leading most TEs in all receiving categories.
  • The Bengals signed Blizzard to the team that year, but he suffered a career ending back injury.
  • Bobby joined his former coach at Kentucky- Hal Mumme at a variety of stops at the Division III level.
  • In 2019, Bobby followed Mumme to the AAF serving as TEs coach of the Memphis Express.
  • After the league collapsed, he joined Mumme on the staff of the XFL Renegades as RB coach, and later as co-offensive coordinator in 2020.

ACCOLADES:

  • All NFLE 2006
  • All Europa 2007

NOTES:

A nice coup for me, Bobby is another solid player/ prospect of the NFLE/Europa who has become an intriguing up and coming coaching prospect. An apostle of the Hal Mumme tree, Blizzard came to my attention after he joined the AAF in 2019. I’ve been a fan ever since.

NFLE/EUROPA

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Vick, Mike

Panini Rookies & Stars 2013, #74

CARDS: Panini Rookies & Stars 2013, Topps AAF 2019
ACQUIRED: Paid Signing, 2021

CAREER SNAPSHOT:

  • Played QB two years at Virginia Tech, putting up modest stats, throwing for 3279 yards and 21 TDs (12 INT), and 1216 yards rushing on 223 carries (17 TDs) over two years (99-00)
  • With the Chargers trading out of the first overall pick to Atlanta, the Falcons made Vick the first overall pick of the 2000 NFL Draft.
  • Immediately displayed fleet feet, reminiscent of Randall Cunningham, rushing for for 289 yards on 31 carries (9.1 ypc) in rookie season.
  • Ran for 777 yards (2001) and 902 (2004).
  • Started first 16 game slate in 2006- rushing for a career high 1031 yards, while passing for 20 TDs and 2,472 yards.
  • Career came to an abrupt halt as he was suspended for dog fighting in 2007.
  • After two year suspension concluded, signed with the Eagles in 2009.
  • Became starter in 2010, and posted a career high in completion percentage (62.6), TDs (21), passer rating (100.2), and rushing TDs (9).
  • In 2011, threw for a career high 3,303 yards, 423 attempts, and 253 completions.
  • Entered a very short journeyman phase of his career playing for the Jets (2014) and Steelers (2015).
  • Signed a one day contract to retire with the Atlanta Falcons in 2017.
  • In 2018, joined the Alliance of American Football‘s Atlanta Legends as offensive coordinator.
  • Before the season began, Vick was reassigned to Advisor, and by the start of the season was oddly pushed out the door.

ACCOLADES:

  • First African American QB taken #1 overall in the NFL Draft
  • NFL Comeback Player of the Year 2010
  • Pro Bowl 2002, 04-05, 10
  • Archie Griffin Award 1999
  • First Team All-American 1999
  • Bert Bell Award 2010
  • NFL record most yards rushing (career) by a QB
  • NFL record most yards rushing (single season) by a QB
  • NFL record career yards per carry
  • NFL QB record 173 yards rushing (single game)
Topps AAF 2019, #7

NOTES:

I mean, I knew Vick would be nearly impossible to get TTM so I went ahead and just plunked down two cards for a reasonable paid signing. That’s when things went awry as Vick didn’t finish signing the cards he’d agreed to do through the promoter. While he did sign my cards, you can just tell based off the autographs, he just didn’t care.

If there’s any former player who should be trying to endear himself more to fans- especially after supporting dog fighting– I mean it should be Mike Vick.

In regards to Mike’s short stint in the AAF. It was a big deal that he was going to be working as the offensive coordinator of the Atlanta Legends under Brad Childress. Then everything went sideways in ATL. Childress already seeing things weren’t looking good or finding greener pastures hit the road. About a month later, Vick was no longer coaching the offense, and was reassigned as an adviser. Reading the tea leaves, leads ones to believe that Mike just didn’t have the time to devote to the fledgling team that they needed. He made a token appearance during halftime of a home game, briefly popping up to the delight of fans, and the AAF cameras that definitely got him on film.

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Ward, Hines (2)

Pro Set 1990 Super Bowl MVP, #45 (HACK)

CARDS: Atomic 2001, Pro Set 1990 Super Bowl MVP Hack, Topps AAF 2019
ACQUIRED: IP, 2022
FAILURE: TTM 2016, 2019, 2021 C/o Work

CAREER SNAPSHOT:

Well as you can see here, I racked up quite a few misses TTM on Hines. After his time in the AAF, I had wanted to get him on a few more cards- especially his Topps AAF card itself, but no such luck. When the XFL reemerged in 2022 (for its 3rd iteration) the league was quick to announce that Hines was going to be a coach in the league.

He’d become quite the hot coaching commodity clutching at coaching pearls with the Jets as an offensive assistant, and then to the college ranks with Florida Atlantic as a WRs coach. The Houston Texans even had Ward in for a head coaching interview in 2021. He’d later be one of the big splash names the XFL 2023 announced. When he was announced for the San Antonio franchise, I was very excited.

Atomic 2001, #116

I finally got an invite for the XFL Town House about a week before the event back in late October. I went ahead and invited a local collector and new friend of mine, Brandon, to the event. He got there a bit earlier than me, as I went to the wrong side of town, but eventually I got there about 15 minutes before it began. I was wearing my Greg Ward Commanders jersey.

We had a really good time. Hines once I told him that I had met him previously on the front row of the Commanders inaugural game, had a good chuckle with me. He signed 3 cards for me and posed for a photo. I got lots of love from not only the other fans there that recognized my jersey, but also from news and sports personalities that wanted to come over and talk to me about the Commanders. It was great and I felt like was back in my element.

This Pro Set Super Bowl MVP Hack I did looks great! I am so glad that he was kind enough to autograph it for me. I am looking forward to getting more of this set printed and signed.