Tag Archives: San Diego Fleet

Ginda, Frank

Card: Topps AAF 2019
Acquired: TTM 2020, C/o Home
Sent: 4/10 Received: 4/30 (20 days)

Frank Ginda played linebacker for the San Diego State Spartans from 2015- 2017. He started as a true freshman, and his numbers improved every year into his Junior campaign. In 2017, he led the NCAA in tackles with 173, and had 13 tackles for loss, 2 sacks and 3 pass deflections. Frank finished his college career with 351 total tackles, 29 tackles for loss, 9.5 sacks, 6 forced fumbles, 4 pass deflections, and an interception for 16 yards.

Frank was not selected in the 2018 NFL Draft, and after a quick stop in Arizona, joined the Miami Dolphins. He had an outstanding preseason finale against the Falcons, but was one of their final cuts.

Frank returned home where he joined the Alliance of American Football signing with the San Diego Fleet. Behind the Fleet’s nasty 3-4 front, Frank led the team with 41 tackles- posting 4 for loss, 2 pass deflections, and a forced fumble against SLC that led to a TD recovery- despite only starting 2 of 8 contests. He also set the league record for tackles in a game, recording 15 against the Memphis Express, in their March 2nd contest.

We all just bought into the system and we all dialed in and knew how much we wanted to play in the NFL. There were guys that played multiple years. There were guys that played preseason like I did and there were guys that didn’t play at all. Everybody bought into the system and bought into the playbook.”

-Frank Ginda

After the AAF folded, Frank didn’t stay unemployed for long. He’d be selected by the New York Guardians of the XFL 2020, where Ginda finished with 11 tackles and a sack in 5 contests.

Frank signed this awesome card of his and dropped a nice note on the back of it thanking me for my support.

Martz, Mike

Card: Topps AAF 2019 Certified
Acquired: EBay, 2020

An offensive mastermind, Mike Martz has had a career in coaching that has lasted nearly 50 years, in stops through college and the pros. He’d make his mark after joining the Los Angeles Rams in 1992 as a quarterbacks coach, and after the franchise moved to St. Louis in 1995, he moved to coach the wide receivers. After a brief stay with the Redskins in 97 and 98, Martz returned to the Rams, as the franchise’s offensive coordinator in 1999 as they won Super Bowl XXXIV over the Tennessee Titans- with ‘The Greatest Show on Turf’.

“He was by far the smartest football mind I’ve ever been around. The things he was teaching was so far ahead of what others were teaching.”

– Rams QB Marc Bulger

In 2000, Mike would replace retiring Dick Vermeil as head coach, but the Rams failed to return to the Super Bowl, losing in the wild card to the Saints. Martz’s Rams rebounded in a big way in 2001, posting a 14-2 record and returning to the Super Bowl, but ultimately losing to the New England Patriots on a last second field goal. Mike coached with the Rams through 2005 and finished with a 53-32 record. His teams made the playoffs 4 times and finished in either first or second place every season.

Mike since then has coached with the Lions, 49ers, and Bears, as an offensive coordinator. He semi-retired from the sport in 2012, working as an analyst and occasional NFLPA Collegiate Bowl coach, before deciding to give it another shot in 2018.

Mike joined the Alliance of American Football in 2018, where he was hired to coach his hometown San Diego Fleet.

“It didn’t make any difference whether I was in high school. That’s what you do. You walk onto the practice field, and that’s who you are, that’s what you are. I can’t stop and go. That’s just where it is. To be any different would cheat these players. I love this game. I wouldn’t disrespect it by not being intense.”

-Mike Martz

Mike led the Fleet to a 3-5 record, dogged by quarterback issues. Still there were shades of the mad genius coming through with the Fleet as they finished second in total yards (2,649 yards), passing yards (1,798), and 4th in rushing (851 yards).

As previously discussed, AAF certified autographs from coaches are severely overpriced. Thankfully with all the XFL hoopla this autographed card snuck under the EBay radar set with a low bid. Typically Martz’s certifieds have floated around anywhere between 30-75 dollars. I think I sniped this one out under 10. It was doubly happy to nab this one, as Mike is not a great signer through the mail.

Mike was within two feet in the visitors’ endzone coaching his quarterbacks before the Fleet’s opener, but feeling his intensity, I chickened out on chatting it up with him or asking for his autograph. Charlie Ebersol came up to Mike and chatted with him about the league before they shuffled off to another drill.

Ross, Alex

Card: Topps 2019 AAF Certified
Acquired: 2019, EBay

Alex Ross put up some solid numbers at quarterback with Coastal Carolina from 2012-2015. He finished his college career with 72 touchdown passes and 9,918 yards while completing 64.7% of his passes. He was not selected in the 2016 draft, and saw time in camp with the Atlanta Falcons. He then saw time in the CFL for the British Columbia Lions (2017) and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers (2018).

In 2019, Alex signed with the Alliance of American Football. He was allocated to the Memphis Express., however during the Pick or Protect QB Draft, he’d be selected with the final choice of the draft by the San Diego Fleet. The Fleet had issues from the get go at quarterback. With Josh Johnson signing with the Redskins, and Mike Bercovici inconsistent, Philip Nelson stepped in, but he too was injured.

During Week 4, Alex came in to replace Nelson at quarterback against the Memphis Express. He’d toss a score on 8 of 18 passes, going for 80 yards on the day, but threw an interception and lost 2 fumbles. He’d back up Bercovici for the remainder of the season. Currently Alex is a free agent.