Monday, September 26, 2016

Cowboys Of '81: Danny Takes Over

Topps Bruce Thornton, Tim Newsome, Larry Bethea, John Fitzgerald, Robert Shaw, Doug Cosbie, Steve Wilson, Dennis Thurman, Gary Hogeboom, Tom Rafferty, Aaron Mitchell, Glenn Carano, Wade Manning, Ed “too Tall” Jones, Harvey Martin, Tom Landry, Danny White


The Danny White era had officially begun in 1980 after the somewhat unexpected retirement of Roger Staubach after the 1979 season.  With a balanced roster of talent, seasoned veterans, and young and rising stars, the Cowboys had every reason to feel they were a Super Bowl contender.  White led a potent offense, directing the Cowboys to a 12–4 record, good for second place in the Eastern Division.  Although they were number one in the NFL on offense and number 13 on defense, the Cowboys could not overcome the superior defense of the Philadelphia Eagles, losing 20–7 on the road in the NFC Championship Game.

This 18-card RetroCards set features players that did not appear on a regular card in 1981. The set includes: Bruce Thornton, Tim Newsome, Larry Bethea, John Fitzgerald, Robert Shaw, Doug Cosbie, Steve Wilson, Dennis Thurman, Gary Hogeboom, Tom Rafferty, Aaron Mitchell, Glenn Carano, Wade Manning, a team card featuring Tom Landry, an In-Action card of Danny White, and a “teammates” card featuring Harvey Martin and Ed “Too Tall” Jones. Also included are playoff cards of the NFC Wild Card vs. Rams and the NFC Divisional Game vs. Falcons.  Coming Soon!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

More Fun With Broadway Joe

Topps, Philadelphia Gum Cards, Brady Bunch, Bobby meets Broadway Joe

In an earlier post, RetroCards featured the “lost Joe Namath cards.”  From 1974-1978 there were no Joe Namath cards, presumably due to a lack of an agreement with the NFL Players Association (a similar predicament both Lynn Swann and Earl Campbell had).  So RetroCards filled in those missing years by doing what they do best: making custom sports cards.  But why stop there? 

Namath was such a popular player that RetroCards created another cache of cards that feature Namath cards in all four Philadelphia Gum card designs.  Although Joe’s first season was in 1965, the NFL and AFL drafts were held in November 1964 so RetroCards took the creative license and designed two 1964 cards: one in the Topps design, and a Philadelphia Gum Card design as a St. Louis Cardinal, the NFL team that drafted him.

The other oddball card is a 1968 Philadelphia Action card, which is a RetroCards original design, creating what may have been the fifth Philadelphia Gum card design had there been one in 1968. This original design is unique in that it focuses on “action” or “sideline” shots in a time when only posed player shots were used.  RetroCards will be elaborating on this design with some sets in the coming months.

RetroCards followers know that few subjects are off limits so Joe Namath gets a special card with Bobby Brady of the Brady Bunch TV show (I don’t think I have to explain the episode where Broadway Joe appears).  Look for more 70s TV cards as well as your favorite sports heroes here on this blog. 

Sunday, September 11, 2016

1970 Chicago Bears: A Decade Of Futility

Topps football cards Brian Piccolo, Craig Baynham, Dan Hale, Mike Hull, Major Hazelton, Harry Gunner, Bob Hyland, Dan Pride, Ross Montgomery, Bobby Joe Green, Bobby Douglass, Linzy Cole, Wayne Mass, Joe Taylor, Ronnie Bull,  Ed Obradovich, Ray Ogden, Jeff Churchin, Gale Sayers/Dick Butkus

After coming off a horrible 1–13 season in 1969, the Chicago Bears could only go in one direction. Gale Sayers was the only bright spot in 1969, leading the league in rushing, but he was not the same as his pre-surgery self, having lost his break away speed.  On top of the dismal record, running back Brian Piccolo was diagnosed with cancer and died in June of 1970.  Luckily, the Bears improved to a 6–8 record in 1970 and played their last game at Wrigley field before moving over to Soldier Field in 1971.  The 6–8 showing would be the Bears 3rd best record of the decade where they had only one winning season.

This 20-card set features a special "In Memoriam" card for Brian Piccolo, Craig Baynham, Dan Hale, Mike Hull, Major Hazelton, Harry Gunner, Bob Hyland, Dan Pride, Ross Montgomery, Bobby Joe Green, Bobby Douglass, Linzy Cole, Wayne Mass, Joe Taylor, Ronnie Bull,  Ed Obradovich, Ray Ogden, Jeff Churchin, and a Gale Sayers/Dick Butkus card.  Coming Soon!


Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Ron Vander Kelen: Wisconsin Great

Topps, Philadelphia gum cards, NFL

Badger legend Ron Vander Kelen passed away at age 76, on August 14, 2016. He was the Co-MVP (with Trojan QB Pete Beathard) in the 1963 Rose Bowl where the University of Wisconsin was defeated by USC 42–37.  Down 42–14 in the fourth quarter, Vander Kelen orchestrate a comeback with 23 unanswered points but fell short in what is considered one of the greatest Bowl games of all-time.

He had one more MVP performance as starter in the College All-Star Game where the College All-Stars defeated the Packers 20–17 which included Vander Kelen completing a pass to Badger teammate Pat Richter.  This 1963 game was the last time the College team beat an NFL team.

Growing up in Preble, Wisconsin (soon to be annexed by Green Bay) he went undrafted by the NFL, probably because the Rose Bowl was played after the NFL draft. Vander Kelen signed as a free agent to play for the Minnesota Vikings and played backup to starting quarterback Fran Tarkenton. During his five years with the Vikings, he never attempted more than 58 passes in any one season. Vander Kelen ended up appearing in 29 games and had five starts, three coming in 1967, his final NFL season.  He was traded to the Falcons in 1968 but couldn't unseat Randy Johnson as the starter and was released.  He played briefly in the Canadian Football league before retiring.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

QBs Of 1973: Can't Get Enough

Topps Roman Gabriel , Jack Concannon, Dan Fouts, Jerry Tagge, Sam Wyche, Joe Ferguson, Wayne Clark, Bob Lee, Jim Del Gaizo, Tony Adams, Al Woodall, Dick Shiner, Randy Johnson, Sonny Jurgenson, Bill Munson, Bobby Scott, Bill Demory, Bill Cappleman, Charlie Napper, Lynn Dickey, Sonny Sixkiller, Joe Gilliam, Joe Reed, Tim Van Galder, Daryle Lamonica, Edd Hargett, Mike Livingston, Terry Hanratty, Pete Beathard, Gary Huff, Don Horn, Bert Jones, James Harris, Bill Nelson, Greg Cook, John Huarte

The quarterbacking landscape in the 1973 professional football world was much like it is today: only a handful of great ones, several midrange QBs that move around a lot, some up-and comers, and some down-and-outers.  1973 had a glut of athletes trying to claw their way to the top and RetroCards focuses on the quarterback position for this special set.

So many quarterbacks were floating around, there were enough RetroCards for two 20-card series!  Several high profile players like Dan Fouts, Bert Jones, Roman Gabriel, Sonny Jurgenson, and Joe Ferguson are featured (Gabriel gets a Ram card AND an Eagle card) and grace this series while some “never-would-be’s” also get their due in this set.  Coming soon!

Series one includes: Lynn Dickey, Sonny Sixkiller, Joe Gilliam, Jim Del Gaizo (Dolphins), Joe Reed, Tim Van Galder, Daryle Lamonica, Roman Gabriel (Rams), Edd Hargett, Mike Livingston, Terry Hanratty, Pete Beathard, Gary Huff, Don Horn, Bert Jones, James Harris, Bill Nelson, Greg Cook, John Huarte and a checklist card.

Series two includes: Roman Gabriel (Eagles), Jack Concannon, Dan Fouts, Jerry Tagge, Sam Wyche, Joe Ferguson, Wayne Clark, Bob Lee, Jim Del Gaizo (Packers), Tony Adams, Al Woodall, Dick Shiner, Randy Johnson, Sonny Jurgenson, Bill Munson, Bobby Scott, Bill Demory, Bill Cappleman, and Charlie Napper plus a checklist card.



Saturday, August 20, 2016

1962 Dallas Cowboys - A Flair For Fleer

Topps Fleer Mike Connelly, Lorenzo Stanford, Jim Doran, Don Bishop, Glynn Gregory, Eddie LeBaron, Bob Lilly, John Meyers, Andy Cvercko, Cornell Green, Ken Frost, Mike Dowdle, Tom Franckhauser, Bob Fry, Dale Memmelaar, Don Healy, Amos Bullocks, Warren Livingston

The Cowboys made big strides in 1961 after a winless inaugural season in 1960.  After starting 3–1, tied for first place in the Eastern Conference, the league caught up with the Cowboys as they settled into a 4-9-1 record.  Offensively the Cowboys had plenty of fire power with budding star Frank Clarke as one of the league’s top deep threats and the running tandem of Don Perkins and Amos Marsh helped the Cowboys finish 10th in rushing yards.  Rotating quarterbacks Eddie LeBaron and Don Meredith combined veteran leadership and youthful exuberance which saw the Cowboys 6th in passing.  Defensively, the Cowboys struggled, but defensive back Don Bishop was playing at an All-Pro level, and youngsters Chuck Howley and Bob Lilly showed signs of what was to come.

This RetroCards set is based off the 1962 Fleer AFL football card set but is freshened up with NFL players, namely the Dallas Cowboys.  Players in Series One include: Mike Connelly, Lorenzo Stanford, Jim Doran, Don Bishop, Glynn Gregory, Eddie LeBaron, Bob Lilly, John Meyers, Andy Cvercko, Cornell Green, Ken Frost, Mike Dowdle, Tom Franckhauser, Bob Fry, Dale Memmelaar, Don Healy, Amos Bullocks, & Warren Livingston.  Get yours here!

Saturday, August 13, 2016

1964 Cowboys: An Alternate Design

In 1964, NFL and AFL football cards were manufactured by two separate companies:  Topps got the AFL while the Philadelphia Gum Company obtained the license for the NFL.  What if those were swapped?  Wonder no more because RetroCards has made a 1964 Dallas Cowboys set in the Topps design.  For the the Cowboys collector who has everything, this is something to add to their collection.

The 18-card set includes:  Harold Hays, Bob Lilly, Amos Bullocks, George Andrie, Ray Schoenke, Lee Roy Jordan, Don Meredith,  Frank Clarke, Tommy McDonald, Don Perkins, Tom Landry, Roger Staubach, Pettis Norman, Jerry Tubbs, Larry Stephens, Chuck Howley, Buddy Dial, and Joe Bob Isbell.  Get your set here.