Tag Archives: topps 1991

Tillman, Lewis

Cards: Topps 1991, ProSet 1989
Acquired: TTM 2018, C/o Home
Sent:  10/8        Received: 10/20     (12 days)

Lewis Tillman is another member of the solid 1989 NFL Draft Class.  Graduating from Jackson St, Tillman was a two time I-AA All-America, breaking Walter Payton’s single season rushing (1,436 yards) and career rushing record with 3,969 yards. Tillman was selected in the 3rd round by the New York Giants, who collected runningbacks for their offensive rotation. 

Lewis finished his rookie season with 79 carries for 290 yards as the Giants won Super Bowl XXV. He’d score his first professional TD in 1990, during a 31-7 win over the Rams. The Giants continued to employ Lewis consistently, but sparingly in 1991. He’d rush for another 287 yards on 65 carries.  After a quiet 1992, Tillman had 585 yards and 3 TDs including a career long 58 yard long run. 

Lewis signed with the Bears in 1994. He’d have the best season of his career. He’d set across the board personal highs with 275 carries for 899 yards and 7 TDs to go along with 27 receptions for 222 yards.  He wouldn’t be able to duplicate his feat in 1995- as the Bears drafted Rashaan Salaam in the 1st round. Buried on the depth chart behind Salaam and Robert Green, Tillman retired after the conclusion of the season.

Tillman has enjoyed a fine career after his playing days. He’s gone into coaching and has climbed to the college level. Currently in 2019 he’s a coach for the Texas Southern Tigers.

Great cards of Lewis here, but I really would’ve loved to have gotten his autograph on his Score 1990 entry, but he must have really liked it and didn’t have it for his collection, as he kept it. A solid TTM repsonder, I loved getting his autograph on these cards nonetheless.


Thomas, Robb

Cards: Topps 1992, Score 1991, Stadium Club 1992, Fleer Ultra 1991
Acquired: TTM 2011, C/o Home
Sent:  4/27   Received:  5/13  (23 days)

I don’t know why, but Robb Thomas had a few cards in my collection that just kept popping up when I was looking for a player to send to. Then all of a sudden Sportscollectors.net lit up with TTM successes from him, so after a few days of debate I grabbed a stack of his cards and sent them out. In less than a month I got a response from the former Beaver on these 4 cards to which he also inscribed one of them in ball point pen with, “Go Beavs!”

Robb Thomas was a class member of the super draft of 1989. Drafted near the top of the 6th round by the Kansas City Chiefs, he’d be a nice acquisition for the team with 4.55 speed.  (The wide receiver class statistical output quickly drops off after him, with New Orleans Saints WR Floyd Turner being the only notable blip on the radar after Thomas.)  After a weak rookie season, in which Robb spent half the season on IR, he’d make 8 receptions for 58 yards and 2 touchdowns while adjusting to Marty Schottenheimer‘s offense in 1989. In 1990 he’d start 12 games for the Chiefs snagging 41 receptions for 545 yards and 4 touchdowns. A sure handed pass catcher with good instincts, Robb would follow his 1990 campaign up with a similar 1991, leading the team with 43 receptions and chalking up 495 yards again starting 12 games alongside rookie Tim Barnett.

Thomas would sign with the Seahawks in 1992 where he provided depth to the team and would start only 1 game  over 3 seasons. In 1995, Robb would start 2 games and make 12 receptions for 239 yards and a career high 19.9 yards a reception. In 1996 Robb would sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and play for rookie head coach Tony Dungy. Back in the lineup for his most solid playing time since 1991, he’d make 33 receptions for 427 yards and 2 touchdowns in 8 starts. He’d return to the bench in 1997, before returning again briefly in 1998, to help out the Buccaneers devastated wide receiver corps and  ironically make the longest reception of his career, and then retire soon thereafter.

Topps in  1992 finally started seeing the light and the majority of their cards matched this respectable quality card of Robb that they put out. The Stadium Club card, (which was their premier line,) was unique, had higher quality imagery, and the back of the cards had the player’s first card appearance and “The Sporting News” rating system. It was an obvious step up. Fleer on the other hand fumbled the ball right out of the gate. After a decent debut in 1990, Fleer decided in 1991 to release 2 lines as well, but it was gallingly apparent that the 1991 regular was retooled so that it was an even lower quality, imagery, and design than the previous year’s offering. The 1991 Fleer Ultra set was a disaster in itself. I really disagree with squeezing so many type faces into the player information area and the silver seems too strong and almost unnecessary to the design space. The back of this card is even more ghastly, with simple usage of the selection tool to isolate player figures that have arbitrary body parts cut off and a centered picture isolated in a NFL logo mask. An absolute travesty. It was a struggle in approach and feel to even reach the quality of their debut set. The Score 1991 card is a great action shot of Robb, and while they seem to have clearly lost a step, it’s just not as obvious a loss in design as Fleer displays or as much as Topps and its Stadium Club line gained.

Robb was a Tecmo Super Bowl veteran on an offense that largely relied on the ground game of Okoye and Word. Respected by the Tecmo gods, Thomas was always an underrated receiver that could be counted on in a pinch. A big Beaver backer, Robb enjoys sporting events and has dabbled in high school coaching as a wide receivers coach for Summit High School in Oregon where he lives with his wife and kids.

G/Gs  136/37       Rec 174        Yds 2229        Avg  12.8           Td 11         Lg 50

Gossett, Jeff

Cards: Score 1990, Topps 1991
Acquired: In Person 1990,1991, Dallas Cowboys Training Camp

Jeff Gossett led a very long, consistent, and productive NFL career which actually started back in 1980 after he failed to make the roster of the Dallas Cowboys as a free agent. He’d sign with the Chiefs and be their punter from 1981 to 1982, and then become a journeyman playing for the Browns for a season before hopping over to the USFL. Gossett would play for the Chicago Blitz in 1984, and the Portland Breakers in 1985, then back to the Browns later in 1985 to play for the Browns through 1987. He’d punt for the Oilers as well that year and then finally find a permanent home with the Los Angeles Raiders. Jeff would be named to the Pro Bowl (AP as well) in 1991, and play with the Raiders through their transition back to Oakland in 1996 for a total of 140 games with the Silver and Black. A solid punter, Gossett averaged 44.2 yards a punt in 1991, and 43.9 yards in 1994. Only in 2 out of 16 seasons did Jeff average below 40 yards a punt. Well represented in Tecmo Bowl history, he’d make an appearance in both Tecmo SuperBowl and Tecmo SuperBowl Final Edition, and his 982 punts would rank top 20 upon retirement.

G/Gs 212       Punts 982      Yds 40569       Avg 41.3        Lg  65       Blk  4