1960 Topps
Jim Ray Smith

Sometimes all you need to know about a poor old football card is what's written on its back:

"Jim helps clear the path for Jimmy Brown when the fullback plunges into the line. He can handle the biggest and roughest of the N.F.L. giant linemen. Jim has surprising speed for a fellow of his tonnage."

Enough said.


1958 Topps
Les Richter

Les Richter was the reason I started this blog.

When the latest class of Hall of Famers came out in February, one of the names on the list was that of Les Richter. And the first words out of my mouth was, "Who?"

I had no idea who the man was and it was a shame. So I looked him up and found he was not only a future Hall of Famer but notable in the world of auto racing.

Richter played in eight Pro Bowls and even served a stint in the army before starting his second career serving as head of operations for NASCAR.


1961 Topps
Paul Hornung

Am I wrong in thinking that in 1961 the NFL took a backseat to College Football? At least that's my understanding.

But whether it was pro or college, Hornung was a star.

The 1956 Heisman Trophy winner from Notre Dame, Honung was drafted first overall by the Green Bay Packers in 1957. His Hall-of-Fame career included MVP honors in 1961.

But I wonder if the "Golden Boy" will better be remembered for his exploits at Notre Dame. He won the trophy as the best college athlete in 1956 despite being on a losing team. Notre Dame went 2-8 that season.


1970 Topps
Deacon Jones

After doing a bit of reading on Deacon Jones I learned that he was one of the greatest defensive players to play the game.

I even saw where some consider him the greatest Ram ever.

But what got my attention is that he often played bit roles in some of the 1970s most popular sitcoms.

So next time you are channel surfing and "The Odd Couple," "Brady Bunch" or "Bewitched" is on the air, stop and see if you can spot this Hall-of-Famer.


1972 Topps
Joe Namath

In buying my first vintage football cards, I had to have this Joe Namath.

And while looking through stacks of poor old football cards yesterday, I noticed that his cards are not cheap.

This was by far the most inexpensive of the bunch.

I always thought Namath was one of the game's greatest. But am I basing that on his personality or his ability?

I read an online poll placing the Jets QB as the 100th greatest pro football player ever. Is that accurate? Was he better? Was he worse?

If the price of his cards alone would make you believe that ranking was low.


1958 Topps
Bart Starr

So here goes, my first post on this new blog. After starting pooroldbaseballcards nearly three years ago, I figured it might be time for its football counterpart.

But before I get started, there's something I have to admit: I know nothing about football cards.

I mean I can't even tell you the difference between a card made by Topps, Fleer or that other company - something called Philadelphia?

I am a total novice.

Before yesterday, I owned just a handfull of football cards. I had a few dozen cards from when I was a kid and two cards I remember buying years back.

The first was a 1958 Topps Art Donovan. I bought it after seeing him on the "Tonight Show" and thinking he was hilarious. The other was a 1971 Topps Merlin Olsen. I think it was purchased shortly after watching an episode of "Little House on the Prairie."

But earlier this afternoon I made a trip to my favorite local baseball card shop and asked the owner if he had any poor old football cards.

He did.

I bought a handfull hoping to get this thing started. My favorite is this second-year Bart Starr.

I realized there are some pretty cool looking football cards that were made in the 50s, 60s and 70s.

I often wonder what I would collect if I had to start my baseball collection all over again. Here's my chance to start a new collection with football. So check back every now-and-then to see how the new project is coming along.