Friday 28 June 2019

Players with only one card in my collection - 16

Let's continue the series of posts showing cards of five players with only one card in my collection.  I'm using sorting tools at The Trading Card Database to look through my collection on their site to see who only has one card, and then finding the first five names that I haven't posted yet. I'm also using the images from their site.

1951 Bowman #37

I've shown this card before, but really didn't talk too much about Horace Gillom. This copy from the TCDB is in better condition than mine, but my copy is in good enough shape for me.

Horace Gillom was a fascinating player. He played for Paul Brown at Massillon High School, followed him to Ohio State, and then joined him again with the AAFC Browns in 1947 after his stints in the Army and at the University of Nevada. At every level, Paul Brown wanted the best players regardless of race, and Gillom was the third black player to join the Browns, after Marion Motley and Bill Willis in the team's inaugural 1946 season. (The Browns in the AAFC, and the LA Rams in the NFL, were the first two professional football teams to integrate pro football in 1946.)

During his Browns career, Gillom played at End on both offense and defense, and also punted for the team. He played for the Browns from 1947-56, and when he finished his career, his NFL average punting distance of 43.8 yards was second all-time behind Sammy Baugh's 45.1 average.

In looking up information about him, I came across a book that I'll have to buy (and have since bought), Andy Piascik's "The Best Show in Football: The 1946-55 Cleveland Browns". In it there is a passage that talks about how Gillom helped revolutionize punting. He stood further back than most punters, and that, along with his accurate directional punting, he pretty much introduced the element of hang time to punting.

Horace Gillom died in Los Angeles, at the age of 64, of a heart attack suffered while working as a security guard at a hospital. He was named to the Browns Legends in 2007.

Along with this card, there is a Horace Gillom card in the 1953 Bowman set that I need to acquire.

1991 Score #124

Although this card says Tony Blaylock, his Pro Football Reference page, his Wikipedia page and following football cards that were made of him all refer to him as Anthony Blaylock.

Blaylock was a fourth round draft pick of the Browns, out of Winston-Salem State University, in the 1988 NFL Draft. He played with the Browns through five games into the 1991 season when he was placed on injured reserve with a rotator cuff injury. He was picked up by the Chargers on waivers later in the 1991 season, and played with San Diego through the 1992 season before finishing his career with the Chicago Bears in 1993.

This is the only Anthony Blaylock card on the Trading Card Database that shows him as a Cleveland Brown.

1999 Giant Eagle Cleveland Browns #14

Lomas Brown is probably best remembered as a left tackle blocking for Barry Sanders with the Detroit Lions. Brown was the Lions first round pick, number six overall, of the 1985 NFL Draft. He played with the Lions from 1985-95, making the Pro Bowl with them from 1990-95.

After the 1995 season, Brown signed a three year, nine million dollar with the Arizona Cardinals, and made the Pro Bowl with them during the first season of that contract.

Lomas Brown signed a free agent deal with the Browns to join their 1999 expansion team. He only played one season with the Browns before moving on to the New York Giants for the 2000-01 seasons, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for their 2002 Super Bowl winning season to conclude his eighteen season career.

The Giant Eagle Cleveland Browns set gives us the only Browns card of Lomas Brown's career. There is a gold parallel to this card that I will have to find.

1950 Bowman #79

I've actually written about receiving my Tony Adamle card as part of my Secret Santa gift last year.

To save people from looking up the past post, and to make this part of the post a lot easier, here is what I wrote then:

Tony Adamle started with the Browns in the AAFC in 1947, and played with the Browns through the 1951 season before leaving the team to go to medical school.

While still in school, Adamle came back to the Browns to play for the 1954 season, helping the Browns win their second NFL Championship. His agreement with the team was for him to be allowed to practice with the team only one time per week so that he could continue his studies. He retired after the 1954 season to continue his medical schooling and start his medical career.

(For those that recognize the Adamle name, he is the father of Mike Adamle, former NFL running back, sports broadcaster, host of the American Gladiators, and a General Manager for WWE Raw in 2008.)

This is the first Tony Adamle card in my collection. He also has a 1951 Bowman card for me to find.

2009 Press Pass SE #3

I received this card in a Cleveland Browns card lot that I purchased. I was surprised to see it.

Graham Harrell wasn't drafted by the Browns. He wasn't even signed by them after the draft. Instead he was invited to participate in the Cleveland Browns rookie camp in May 2009. He was not signed by the team, and instead signed a contract with the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the CFL.

Nevertheless, this card and a 2009 Philadelphia card show him on the front with Cleveland although he is in his college uniform, and there are autographed cards of him in a Browns uniform from the rookie camp in the 2009 SP, SP Authentic, Upper Deck and Upper Deck Exquisite Collection sets.

Graham Harrell made it to the NFL with the Green Bay Packers, appearing in four games in the 2012 season after spending the time from 2010 until then going back and forth between their roster and practice squad.

Harrell was signed by the Jets  on August 28, 2013, and appeared in one series with them in an exhibition game before being released on September 2, 2013.

After his playing career finished, Harrell went into coaching with Washington State from 2014-15, and North Texas from 2016-18. On January 29, 2019, he was hired by USC as their new Offensive Co-ordinator.


In a minor health update, this week I met with my surgeon at the six week mark of my surgery. He has referred me to rehab to stretch the tendon in my hamstring, but does not want me to work on strengthening it yet.

I am able to walk (limp) without my crutch, but the surgeon does not want me taking stairs normally yet. I am to continue climbing them by going up with my good leg, and then pulling the bad one up to the step before continuing with the good one again. Going down the stairs, I start with the bad leg, and then bring the good one down, and repeat...

I can sit in longer stretches now, for about between a half hour to forty minutes before I have to stand up for a bit. I'll probably try driving down to my PO Box in Ogdensburg sometime next week. I think that I should be able to manage the near hour long drive then.

I know that things are getting better but I'm still frustrated with the speed of it.

Tuesday 25 June 2019

RIP: Former Browns linebacker Vince Costello

I saw the news that former Browns linebacker Vince Costello passed away on Sunday, June 23rd at the age of 87.

Vince Costello played for the Browns from 1957 to 1966, and was named as a Browns Legend in 2011.

1959 Topps #158

The text on the back of this card is in error. He was not a Guard, and didn't block for Jim Brown. 

Costello played football, baseball and basketball at Ohio University, and he played two years of minor league baseball in the Cincinnati Reds system. Following college, he also served two years in the Air Force. He got a late start in professional football at the age of 25, getting an offer to join the Browns because one of his former college coaches became an assistant coach with the Browns and remembered him from college. He became the starting middle linebacker during his rookie season in 1957.

Vince Costello was a key part of the Browns defense that shut out the vaunted Baltimore Colts offense in the 1964 NFL Championship. Costello picked off a Johnny Unitas pass just before the end of the first half as the Colts were threatening to score.

1961 Fleer #16

Vince Costello is still the Browns franchise leader for Interceptions at the linebacker position, with 18 in 130 regular season games.

Costello was traded to the New York Giants after the 1966 season, and had four interceptions for the Giants in the 1967 season, including one against the Browns in a 38-34 victory over the Browns.

1964 Philadelphia #32

These are the only three mainstream football cards from Vince Costello's career, and I own copies of all three, although I borrowed these images from The Trading Card Database.

According to the TCDB, five other oddball cards have been made of Vince Costello from the following sets:

Carling Black Label Beer Cleveland Browns set from 1959
Kahn's Wieners Browns sets from 1960, 1961 and 1962
National City Bank Cleveland Browns set from 1961

After his playing career ended, Vince Costello joined Paul Brown as a coach with the Cincinnati Bengals from 1969 - 1973. He also had coaching stints with the Miami Dolphins and the Kansas City Chiefs.

After his coaching career finished, he started Vince Costello's Collectibles and although I'm not sure how many Hall of Fame figurines that he made, I do know that he made three Cleveland Browns ones.

I found out about these figures at a card store in Canton, Ohio during one of my visits to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

When the store owner was telling me about these figures, he told me that he had both varieties that were made - ones with real autographs, and ones with printed replica autographs.

I didn't have the money with me to buy the ones with the real autographs, but the store owner gave me a really good deal to pick up copies of the other ones.

I took them down from where I display them so that I could photograph them for this post. Each of these figurines are numbered out of 4900.

Lou Groza

Otto Graham

Marion Motley

Although I didn't get a chance to see Vince Costello play, I am happy that I was able to learn of his career through his cards, and books on the 1964 Browns.

Rest in Peace.

Monday 17 June 2019

Sportlots purchase

In early May, COMC had their annual Spring sale. I looked at the various Browns cards being offered, looking for inexpensive cards, especially from 2018 sets. Thinking that the deals weren't really as nice I was hoping for, I decided to take a look at Sportlots and found one seller (cogrinch) that seemed to have a bunch of 2018 Browns cards that I wanted.

Looking through his inventory, I managed to put together a forty card shipment that came to $17.27 with shipping.

Top: 2004 SkyBox LE #25 FL
Bottom: 2004 Upper Deck Diamond Collection All-Star Lineup - Silver Honors #108

These two cards jumped Luke McCown up over the fifty card mark in my collection.

L-R: 2005 Donruss Thowback Threads #35; 2005 Leaf Certified Materials #29

I'm not going to say that Kellen Winslow's convictions are going to stop me from buying his Browns cards that I need, but they definitely won't be much of a priority and I won't really overpay for them. It sounds like he was a bit of a freak, and I completely agree with his teammates that didn't want to room with him.

2005 Leaf Rookies & Stars #258 (#/750)

This was the only "hit" in my purchase, and it tied for the most expensive card in my purchase at one dollar.

Top: 2005 Leaf Rookies & Stars Longevity #23
Bottom: 2005 Playoff Contenders - Round Numbers Green #RN13 (#/1000)

I could have shown the back of the Contenders card since it had two other players on it - Mike Williams of the Lions and Matt Jones of the Jaguars.

When I opened my order and saw the front of the Contenders card, I thought that I had accidentally ordered a card that I already owned. As it turned out, I did have the Green version of card #RN4, which has the same front but has write-ups on both players on the back, and is numbered out of 1500.

L-R: 2015 Topps Chrome Mini - Green Refractors #131; 2015 Topps Fire - Rookies #7

It feels like I hadn't added a Vince Mayle card to my collection in a while. I had already owned the Silver parallel of the Rookies card but needed the base version.

L-R: 2015 Topps Take it to the House #21 and #36

I had never even heard of this set before, but as it turns out these are the only two Browns cards in the set. Or rather, for the base set...there are autograph versions for each player as well.

Looking up information about the 100 card set, it looks like it came in promo packs that you got for buying $20 worth of 2015 Topps football at participating hobby stores between August 26 and September 8. This purchase gave you a redemption for a five card Take it to the House pack that had to be redeemed between September 9 and 20.

I guess that the promotion would be good to get people to go back to their local stores, but I don't think that I would have been a fan of having to do that.

L-R: 2017 Panini Unparalleled - Pink #44; 2018 Panini Certified - Certified Seal of Approval #21

Oh, how I love the parallels in a set called Unparalleled.

I like the Certified Seal of Approval insert card, and think that it is a good photo of Jarvis Landry. I'm happy to pick it up for a quarter.

Top (l-r): 2018 Donruss #28 and #66
Bottom (l-r): 2018 Donruss #69 and #71

I bought a fair bit of 2018 Donruss and really didn't do well at getting Browns cards. I was happy to finally get the Joe Thomas base card.

Even with the purchases in this Sportlots order, I still need the base card of Ozzie Newsome, and rookie cards of Baker Mayfield, Nick Chubb and Denzel Ward.

Top (l-r): 2018 Donruss #72 and #165
Bottom: 2018 Donruss - Glory #G-10

The Glory insert set surprised me. It is a ten card insert set that has two Browns in it, this Jarvis Landry card, and a Joe Thomas card that I had previously picked up. It really seems unusual to me that a team coming off of a winless season would get two cards out of ten in a non-rookie card insert set.

It is too bad that they used the same photo on the insert card as they used on the base card.

Top (l-r): 2018 Panini Contenders #76; 2018 Panini Contenders - Round Numbers #RNA-WA
Bottom: 2018 Panini Contenders Draft Picks #17

I like the dog (or should I use dawg?) logo that Panini chose to use as the logo for the bottom right of the Contenders card. It is taken from the logo that the team uses for the Dawg Pound. The team logo is the logo used near the top of the card above the words "Season Ticket".

It seems that I wind up picking up Charles White cards as more of an afterthought than actually looking for them. As I went through the seller's inventory, I noticed White's name and remembered that I should buy the card of the former Heisman winner/Browns draft pick.

Top (l-r): 2018 Panini Phoenix #141 and #182
Bottom (l-r): 2018 Panini Prizm #270; 2018 Panini Rookies & Stars #180

I have really liked the Panini Phoenix cards over the three years that they have been offered.

This scan shows the start of six Antonio Callaway cards that I picked up. They joined the Donruss Rated Rookie that I had previously owned.

It will be interesting to see what sort of numbers that Callaway puts up in a receiving corps with Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry. With his speed, he will definitely be a deep threat, and I'm sure will have some long touchdowns over the season.

Top (l-r): 2018 Panini Select #29 and #31
Bottom (l-r): 2018 Panini Select - Sensations #SE-11; - Sensations Prizm #SE-11

The Prizm cards really stand out in the scans. I like that I was able to get both the regular and Prizm of the Sensations insert card.

Top: 2018 Panini Select - Silver Prizm #31
Bottom: 2018 Panini Select - Snapshots Prizm #SN-12

The Silver Prizm Denzel Ward card was tied for the most expensive card in this purchase at one dollar. Had you shown me both of these cards and asked me to guess which I paid more for, I probably would have guessed the Snapshot insert Prizm card. It is one of my favorite cards from this purchase.

Top (l-r): 2018 Panini Unparalleled #48; 2018 Panini Unparalleled - Flight #48
Bottom (l-r): 2018 Panini Unparalleled - Flight #296 and Flight #47

The two Dan Vitale cards pull him off the list of players that I only have one card of.

These Flight parallels double the total that I own. Four more to go.

Top (l-r): 2018 Panini XR #106 and #134
Bottom: 2018 Panini XR #149

It was nice to get the three regular rookie cards from this set. I'm still missing the Baker Mayfield and Nick Chubb rookie cards, but they are autographed memorabilia cards that are serial numbered out of 25 and 50, so they might be more difficult to acquire. Definitely more expensive!

The funny thing is that the seller had these rookie cards but didn't seem to have the base veteran cards. I'm sure they'll turn up at some point.

I was happy with this Sportlots shipment. It was just too bad that it had to sit in my PO Box for so long before my friend was able to get my mail for me.

Friday 14 June 2019

Trading Card Database trade - T-Rex70

After my hamstring injury, but before my surgery, a user on the Trading Card Database, T-Rex70,  reached out to me looking to trade for some Seahawks cards that I had.

I found a couple of Browns cards that I needed and it should have been a very simple trade.

I packed up the cards the day before my surgery, but not being able to drive, the post office was closed by the time that my roommate brought me to store with the nearest postal outlet.

Okay. I left money with my roommate, and a note with the contents to put on the customs declaration, and then had surgery the next morning.

After surgery, I stayed with my sister for close to a week. During that time, my roommate told me that the postal rules had changed and that customs forms now needed to be filled out electronically and that I would need the recipient's phone number in a mandatory field. I would have to wait until I returned home to mail the envelope.

I emailed my trading partner, and made a post on the TCDB asking if other Canadians had experienced this customs change. I was told that the clerk was wrong, and that they were encouraging people to fill out the electronic customs form but that the paper forms were still available. I was also given the date of a Canada Post memo that said that the paper forms were still valid.

A few days later, my roommate was able to take me to a different postal outlet, and I had no problems at that one. I was happy that I had finally mailed the envelope.

Now, the other problem was that I couldn't drive down to my PO Box to pick up the cards that had been mailed to me.

Finally, last weekend, one of my friends said he would make the hour long drive, cross the border, and pick up my mail.

These two parallels were finally in hand.

2018 Donruss Optic - Pink #198

Denzel Ward had a great rookie season, making the Pro Bowl. He's one of the many important, young building blocks that the Browns have for the future.

2018 Donruss Optic - Pink #113

This is my first Damion Ratley card.

Damion Ratley will be in a fight to make the Browns this year after playing in thirteen games, starting three, and catching 13 passes for 144 yards during his rookie season.

Ratley did get a bunch of first team reps during the voluntary minicamps this year as Odell Beckham Jr., Jarvis Landry and Antonio Callaway were not on the field for various reasons. These first team reps can only help him, but I think he'll need to have a strong training camp, and play well during the exhibition games.

I'm just happy to have received this card. I wonder if I'll get another of his cards before his name pops up next on the list of names for the one card in my collection series of posts.

Thank you, T-Rex70. I appreciate the cards, and apologize for the length of time it took me to get you your cards.


Oh, and in a slight health update. I was able to drive to a neighborhood pharmacy the other day. I figured I could sit long enough for a short drive, and I was correct. I won't try anything too far right now, but it is good to know that I can go to the store if I need to.

Wednesday 12 June 2019

Express mailing from the Herschel Hoard

Recently the Herschel Hoard blog had a couple of posts on the 1988 Topps Stickers, and the many possible variations of the stickers with the various sticker back cards.

I knew where my 1988 Topps Stickers were, so I dug them out to see if I had any different variations that I could add to the hoard. I had two different variations so I sent off a message to get a mailing address where I could send the stickers. I didn't expect anything back, but knowing the blogging community was not surprised to get a message back asking if I wanted a specific card off of my wantlists posted on my blog.

Okay, I wasn't surprised to get a message asking if I wanted a card in return, but I was shocked when I saw the card being offered.

I don't have a "most wanted" or "white whale" sidebar on my blog. I have thought of adding one many times, and still might, but I just never seem to get around to it.

If I did have one, however, the card being offered would have been on it.

I have seen the card available at shows in Syracuse, but really didn't want to pay the hometown premium on the offered card, but it was a key card that would eventually have to be added into my collection.

1962 Topps #36

A beautiful card of The Elmira Express, the first black winner of the Heisman Trophy, Ernie Davis.

His story was told on film in the 2008 film The Express: The Ernie Davis Story.

After being drafted first overall by the Washington Redskins in the 1962 NFL Draft, the Browns traded future Hall of Famer Bobby Mitchell to the Redskins to acquire Davis to pair in the Browns backfield with fellow Syracuse alum Jim Brown.

During the summer of 1962, while preparing to play with the College All-Stars against the Green Bay Packers, after tests while ill, Ernie Davis was diagnosed with acute monocytic leukemia. He never played for the Browns, but was allowed to practice with the team, and appeared in uniform for an August pre-season game, where he was spotlighted running on the field, but did not play.

Ernie Davis passed away at the age of 23, in Cleveland, on May 18, 1963.

I'm so thankful to add this meaningful card to my collection.

(The scan seemed to pick up a lot of white specks on the black border of the card. They sure don't seem to be anywhere as noticeable while the card is held in hand. The card is amazing!)

This Ernie Davis card also came with a few friends.

1973 Topps #79

You have to love those old single bar facemasks that kickers used.

Don Cockroft was a longtime kicker for the Browns, acting as both the punter and placekicker from 1968-1976, and then continuing on as only the placekicker from 1977-1980.

1973 Topps #429

Yes, the kid in me is laughing at his name.

Fair Hooker played six seasons in the NFL, all with the Browns from 1969-74, catching 129 passes and 8 touchdowns.

I love the card backs with their cartoons for the 1973 set, so I figured that I would show them.

One last card also came in the package.

1976 Topps #438

When Doug Dieken took over at left tackle for the Browns, it was a big deal. He became the third left tackle in the franchise's history, after Lou Groza from 1946-1959 (in the AAFC and NFL), and Dick Schafrath from 1960 until Dieken took over in 1971. Dieken was the left tackle until 1984.

Oh, and looking at the card back, can you guess the mystery Brown? If you can't, re-read an earlier part of this post and you will realize who the Browns punter was in 1973.

I'm extremely grateful to the Herschel Hoard for these cards. Thank you very much.

Sunday 9 June 2019

Players with only one card in my collection - 15

Let's continue the series of posts showing cards of five players with only one card in my collection.  I'm using sorting tools at The Trading Card Database to look through my collection on their site to see who only has one card, and then finding the first five names that I haven't posted yet. I'm also using the images from their site.

2002 Upper Deck XL #125

After his college career at TCU, Lenoy Jones started his NFL career with three seasons with the Houston and Tennessee Oilers from 1996-98.

The Cleveland Browns selected Lenoy Jones from the newly named Tennessee Titans in the 1999 NFL Expansion Draft, and played his final four NFL seasons with the Browns.

Along with this card, there is a Holofoil parallel version that I need to find. These appear to be the only two cards listed on the Trading Card Database to represent his career.

1993 Bowman #181

Former Florida Gator Del Speer was an undrafted free agent signed by the Browns before the 1993 season. He played in all 16 games of his rookie 1993 season, starting two of them, and the first eight games of the 1994 season with the Browns. I assume he was then released by the Browns but I can't find a transaction record detailing this. I did find that he signed with the Seattle Seahawks in December 1994, and played his last NFL game with the Seahawks shortly afterwards.

This appears to be his only NFL card.

1973 Topps #129

Looking for information on Rich Jackson, I found that he had an awesome nickname for a defensive player, Tombstone, and that he had a vicious head slap that he used during his career. (One article I read said that Deacon Jones credited Rich Jackson for developing the head slap. Another article said that both players claimed to have developed it.)

Rich Jackson started his career playing with the AFL Oakland Raiders in 1966, and the AFL/NFL Denver Broncos from 1967 into the 1972 season when he was traded to the Browns. He was named as a first team All-Pro from 1968-1970, and articles talk about him being a Hall of Fame player before suffering a knee injury in 1971.

The back of the card was a bit optimistic as his career ended after the 1972 season, and this card is the only one to represent his stint with the Browns.

1992 Score 512

After being drafted by the Browns in the seventh round of the 1992 NFL Draft, Selwyn Jones spent the 1992 season on injured reserve.

He returned to the Browns for the 1993 season and started the season strong with two interceptions in the first week of the season, and one in the second week.

Selwyn Jones was released by the Browns during the 1994 season, and signed with New Orleans. After finishing the 1994 season with the Saints, he finished his career with two seasons with the Seattle Seahawks.

From looking on the Trading Card Database, this appears to be Selwyn Jones' only football card. I find this surprising since he did play in 47 games between the 1993 and 1996 seasons and more players seemed to get cards then.

1954 Bowman #99

Finishing off this post is my solo card of Harry "Chick" Jagade.

As you can see on the back, Jagade started his career with the Baltimore Colts before going to the Browns. His one season with the Colts was while they were in the AAFC. His Browns career consisted of three seasons from 1951-53, which means that this card is out of date. He played the 1954 and 1955 seasons with the Chicago Bears.

This is the only Chick Jagade Browns card listed on the TCDB. He also had one Leaf college card with the Indiana Hoosiers that preceded his pro career, and one Bears card in 1955. In addition, he also had a card in the 1955 Sport Magazine Fan Club mail in card.

Chick Jagade passed away at the age of 41 on November 24, 1968.


It has been a while since I posted, not since before my surgery, so here is a health update.

My surgery happened on May 13, and went well. The small fragment of my hip bone that broke off with the tendon was able to be reattached with two screws, and everything else was stitched together with dissolvable stitches.

I had my first follow-up appointment with my surgeon on May 28, and he was very happy with my progress, but told me to pretty much keep doing what I was doing, which was pretty much just lying around.

I was able to stand, but if I was going to bend my hip, I had to bend my knee at the same time so that I didn't put strain on the hamstring. I really couldn't sit, which of course meant that I couldn't drive, which of course kept me mostly confined to the house. I was pretty frustrated. I was able to semi-sit on the couch, with my leg bent, so at least I wasn't lying down all the time.

My friends were great, though, and really helped out. I could recline the passenger seat and pretty much lie in the passenger seat of someone else's vehicle. It was better if it was a SUV type vehicle that I could step up and lower myself down from. They took me to get groceries, and as I was able to stand, I sang in my choir's last four concerts, even though it really tired me out.

I am now able to sit upright for a few minutes at a time, and it seems to be getting longer as time passes. I can sit in recliners, with my legs and feet up. (Too bad I don't own one.) However, this did allow me to go see Rocketman in a theatre with recliner seating.

I can pretty much walk on straight levels without a crutch, but I still need one to go up and down stairs. I don't really have strength in my injured leg. My next appointment with my surgeon is June 25. I'm hoping that I'll be able to drive before then.

One of my friends drove down to my PO Box and collected my mail yesterday, so I have some new cards to show. Since I can sit for a few minutes at a time, I should be able to scan cards for some new posts in the next few days.