Tag Archives: proset 1990

Millard, Bryan

Cards: ProSet 1989, Score Supplemental 1989, ProSet 1990, Topps Stadium Club 1992
Acquired: TTM 2018, C/o Work
Sent: 5/4   Received: 6/4  (30 days)
Failure: TTM 2017, C/o Home

Bryan Millard is regarded as one of the greatest Seahawks linemen ever, but it took him a while to get there, and still to this day he does not receive the respect and accolades he deserves.  He flies under the radar when it comes to great linemen, and even when retrospect sets come out, like the two University of Texas sets from both Upper Deck and Panini, Millard is conspicuously left out.

Bryan played college ball at the University of Texas from 1979-1982. While playing for the Longhorns, Millard honed his skills at both Guard and Tackle- winning All-SWC recognition for the latter in 1982. Surprisingly, he went undrafted in 1983 by the NFL, but the upstart USFL took a flyer on Bryan in the 12th round with the New Jersey Generals. He’d block upfront for the next two seasons for both Herschel Walker and Maurice Carthon helping pave the way for the Generals vaunted rushing attack.

With the league beginning to implode by 1984, Millard headed to the West Coast and joined the Seattle Seahawks, but did not join the starting lineup until midway through the 1985 season. Bryan saw action at both tackle positions before settling on the right guard spot- a position he’d anchor down for roughly the next 6 seasons. Durable, dependable, and strong (a weightlifting advocate who could bench press some 550 pounds), Millard somehow flew underthe radar while opening up holes for Curt Warner and John L Williams. Most notable about Bryan was that despite his size (6’5″, 282), he was nimble enough to trap on the off-side while also being able to take on the larger bull rushers of the era.  He earned one ProBowl nomination in 1988. Thanks in part to injuries, Bryan was forced to retire after the 1991 season.

Bryan lives in the Austin, Texas area. After dabbling in commercial real estate and pharmaceutical sales, he is now a full time real estate broker. I tried sending a few cards out last year, but they were RTS, so I attempted a new address and struck paydirt. Among Bryan’s other hobbies is actually collecting football cards, however I am not sure if he still partakes in the hobby since it has changed so much over the years from the 5 and dime, stick of gum.

Davis, Wendell (WR)

Cards: ProSet 1990, ProSet 1992, GameDay 1992, Topps Stadium Club 1992
Acquired: TTM 2018, C/o Home
Sent: 3/15     Received: 4/16  (30 days)

Wendell Davis was one of the top receivers in the 1988 NFL Draft. He played 3 years collegiately for LSU, racking up 183 receptions for 2708 yards and 19 touchdowns. His best year came in 1986 when the sure handed receiver caught 80 passes for 1244 yards and 11 touchdowns. He’d be the final pick of Round 1 by the Chicago Bears.

The Bears receiving corps was aging, and the team which was a run first smash mouth franchise, never really put much thought into it. With deep threat man Willie Gault departing for greener pastures with the then Los Angeles Raiders, this selection made total sense by the Bears front office.  Davis was not allowed to claim a starting position right off the bat. He’d have to fight up a roster that included Ron Morris, Dennis Gentry, and Dennis McKinnon, who were not only good receivers, but fine run blockers as well.  He didn’t start a game his rookie year, but Wendell had 15 catches for 220 yards. His numbers slowly increased over the next few seasons partially due in fact to the team’s maturation at quarterback under young Jim Harbaugh. Wendell had his best season in 1991 when he posted 61 receptions for 945 yards and 6 touchdowns. To put these numbers in perspective- Davis’ receiving numbers were the best by a Chicago Bears’ receiver since Dick Gordon in 1970!  While Wendell’s numbers slipped in 1992, all signs still pointed towards a solid 1993 campaign.

It was during a game in 1993 against the Philadelphia Eagles, Davis was going up to make what would be considered an ‘ordinary’ NFL catch, but as he laid back, his feet got caught on the exposed astroturf and he tore both of his patella tendons completely off, causing his kneecaps to go up into his thighs. Davis’ career was over.
Still, if there was a silver lining to what happened, Davis’ injury paved the way for the modernization and safety improvement/ removal of turf all over the league.  In 1995 Davis attempted a comeback with the Indianapolis Colts, but did not appear in any games.

He’s made his way into coaching with the 49ers, and at both the high school and college level since then. Currently he lives in Chicago.

I feel like the Topps Stadium Club, Pro Set 1992, and GameDay cards are all part of the same photographic sequence. It focuses on what Davis did best over his career: Hauling in the long bomb from whatever quarterback was currently under center for the Chicago Bears.  Overall, these are some very nice action shots, with the GameDay again being my favorite. Davis really nailed the autograph on this one however, and of the batch that I have received back in 2018, his certainly matches the excitement of his cards the best.

G/GS  81/54   REC 207    YDS 3000    AVG 14.5   TD 14    LG 75t

Tagliabue, Paul ‘Tags’

Cards: ProSet 1990 Special Insert, ProSet 1990 Berlin Wall
Acquired: TTM 2017, C/o Home
Sent: 12/18/17 Received: 1/12/18 (25 days)

Taking the reins in 1989, Paul Tagliabue faced a very tall order: Following up the near canonization of previous commissioner Pete Rozelle. Paul steadied the boat of the league on numerous occasions, handling Raiders owner Al Davis in his on off love affair with Oakland, the Rams move from LA to St. Louis, the Oilers from Houston to Tennessee, and the Browns from Cleveland to Baltimore. During each occasion he addressed each relocation publicly to keep the league from getting a public black eye from ‘stadium blackmail’. Tags also presided over unprecedented expansion. After the league got slammed publicly from the middle of the night departure of the Browns, the NFL gave the city back the franchise, name, and records. He also saw the league expand to Charlotte, Jacksonville, and back into Houston. Paul also oversaw the league’s bold plans to export international play of the sport into Europe and elsewhere in the world, culminating in the WLAF/NFLE/ NFL Europe, that he briefly served as commissioner of in addition to his NFL duties. Tags and his team navigated the deep waters of the 1993 bargaining agreement without a strike occurring. This brought about a salary cap, the end of Plan B free agency, an increase to the overall wages of all players in the league, and unfettered growth of the league. In the meantime the league created a feeding frenzy from the networks for their programming, allowing the league to return record profits.

Paul also took the high road on the state of Arizona, as when the state refused to honor MLK Day, the league pulled up its tentpoles for the Super Bowl and went to Pasadena. Tags also made every attempt to help keep the Saints in New Orleans after the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. He served 17 prolific years for the league, creating a hand in hand workmanlike relationship between players and the league. He even briefly came back to serve as an arbitrator in a recent NFL case with the Saints, but despite all this, many players, media, and fans, remember him for his handling of the severity of concussions which really hinders his legacy. Eventually I believe the league will vote Paul into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and deservedly so, but at this time he remains too much of a hot button of a candidate for voters to choose.