Cards: Pro Set World League 1991, Ultimate World League 1992
Acquired: TTM 2021, C/o Home
Sent: 6/21 Received: 7/24 (33 days)
Failure: TTM 2010, C/o Home
- At time of graduation, was Appalachian State’s all-time leading scorer with 277 points, and field goals made (62).
- Undrafted in 1989, tasted first NFL action later that year with the New York Giants.
- Scored 39 points in 6 games, converting 9 of 12 field goals as injury replacement for Raul Allegre.
- After failing to beat out Nick Lowery in camp in 1990 with the Chiefs, was the #1 overall pick amongst kickers in the WLAF positional draft by the Montreal Machine in 1991.
- Paired with punter Chris Mohr to form the best special teams duo in the World League.
- Scored 51 points on 13 of 18 field goals for the Machine in 1991, setting numerous league records along the way including most field goals in a game (4, Orlando), and longest field goal (50 yards, SA).
- After season concluded, signed alongside Mohr to the Buffalo Bills, but failed to unseat incumbent kicker Scott Norwood.
- Joined the Cleveland Thunderbolts of the Arena Football League in 1993 playing one season with the franchise.
- Hopped over to the CFL, kicking for the Shreveport Pirates in 1994 and 95.
- After two more attempts at making an NFL roster in 1996 (Chiefs) and 1997 (Bucs), returned to the Arena Football League in 1998.
- Played for the Tampa Bay Storm (1998), Buffalo Destroyers (1999), Arizona Rattlers (2000), and Carolina Cobras (2001).
- Briefly reemerged for a comeback attempt in 2005 and was an offseason addition for the Ottawa Renegades, retiring soon thereafter.
- All World League 1991 Second Team
Bjorn Nittmo was the first Swede to play professional gridiron football and is considered an ambassador of the sport. While playing for the Giants, late night host David Letterman fell in love with his name and made jokes about it, leading to two appearances by Nittmo on Letterman’s show in late 1989 and early 1990. In 1999, Bjorn also appeared in the movie Any Given Sunday and was the placekicker for the Sharks.
Nittmo is unfortunately a long study in concussions and CTE. After taking a bone crunching hit during the preseason with the Bucs, he was never the same again. His short term memory was severely damaged by the injury and he apparently has dealt mood swings. Estranged from his family, he became a nomad of sorts, moving around the country, picking up jobs here and there. Over the years, multiple articles have been written about his case, so after failing out in 2010 on him- not knowing he was estranged from his family, I tracked him down in Northern Arizona of all places.
It’s a small world really. Back in 2007 I drove through Northern Arizona, and passed through the town he was living in. The only reason I remember it was because it was in the middle of nowhere, and it was just a blip on the radar, so I honed in on his location and wrote him a letter.
I was shocked to get a response from this ‘white whale’ in less than 30 days. It was nice hearing from him. I know his life has been… hard- over the last few years, but I hope that he is making the best of it and trying to better himself.
As a final note, I’d like to thank those out there who have collaborated with me over the years to find World League players. I have been at this for many years now. This is a success, for me personally, a triumph of singularity that others can only claim to have found, but more than likely got from me. – There is no reason I shouldn’t toot my horn about this one.
Nonetheless, I hope that this information finds its way into the right hands, and reunites some more players with each other and brings back fond memories of their time in the World League.