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1972 Miami Dolphins: Perfection

The Dolphins burst out with a 10–3–1 record in 1971, losing to the Dallas Cowboys in the Super Bowl. Their strong running game of Csonka, Kiick, and Morris were the best combination of running backs in the AFC, while rising star Bob Greise threw to a reliable fleet of receivers in Paul Warfield, Otto Stowe, Howard Twilley, and Marv Fleming. By 1972, the Dolphin defense matched the strength of the offense with a solid line containing Manny Fernandez, Bob Heinz, and Bill Stanfill, while the linebackers were led by veteran Nick Buoniconti. The defensive backfield boasted two All-Pro safeties in Dick Anderson and Jake Scott, adding to a balanced team that went undefeated in 1972. A Super Bowl victory over the Washington Redskins gave them a perfect 17–0 season.

This RetroCards set features 18 great players from that 1971 and 1972 team including: Marlin Briscoe, Nick Buoniconti, mike Colen, Norm Evans, Bob Heinz, Bob Kuechenberg, Jim Langer, Jim Mandich, George Mira, Lloyd Mumphord, Jim Riley, Jake Scott All Pro, Larry Seiple, Bob Stanfill, Otto Stowe, Doug Swift, Howard Twilley, and head coach Don Shula. Coming soon!

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1969 Oakland Raiders

1968 saw the Raiders compile an impressive 12–2 record despite a rash of injuries to their defense including Tom Keating, Bill Laskey, and Kent McCloughan. Luckily, key rookies like George Atkinson stepped up to compensate. New stars were emerging like Warren Wells, Gene Upshaw, and Art Shell and in 1969, young coach John Madden took over and improved their 1968 to 12–1–1 in 1969. The Kansas City Chiefs proved to be too much for the Raiders in 1969, beating them 17–7 in the AFL Championship Game, but the Raiders had built a tradition of winning and that would carry them through the next decade.

This 18-card set features: George Atkinson, Dan Birdwell, Willie Brown, Dan Conners, Cotton Davidson, Eldridge Dickey, Dave Grayson, Wayne Hawkins, Ike Lassiter, Carleton Oats, Gus Otto, Art Shell, Charlie Smith, Rob Svihus, Gene Upshaw, Warren Wells, Howie Williams,  and John Madden. Order your set here.

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Those We’ve Lost in 2020: Part Three

This part three post of the many sports and pop culture figures we have lost in 2020.

Paul Crane, Helen Reddy, Jay Johnstone, Mike Tilleman, Tom Yewcic, Dick Nemelka, Charlie Pride, Matt Blair, Larry Wilson, David Lander, Whitey Ford, Ron Perranoski, Jake Scott, Gale Sayers, Bill Mathis, Alex Trebek, K.C. Jones, Joe Morgan, Milt Sunde, Ray Perkins, Phil Niekro, Gord Brooks, Bird Averitt, Ron Widby, Derland Moore, Bob Whitlow, Jimmy Orr, Tom Dempsey, Fred Dean, Loyd Phillips, and Louis Carter.

Thank you for checking out this special series of Those We’ve Lost.

 

 

 

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Those We’ve Lost In 2020: Part Two

 

This part two post of the many sports and pop culture figures we have lost in 2020.

Bob Oliver, Howard Mudd, Joe Beauchamp, Little Richard, Bob Watson, Dick Lucas, Earnie Killum, Tom Seaver, Rosey Taylor, Lee Grosscup, Wes Unseld, Mike McCormack Rodger Bird, Don Zimmerman, Dick Coury, Tom Vaughn, Paul Rochester, Claudell Washington, Oscar Brown, Dick Allen, Jim Frey, Wilford Brimley,  Carl Garrett, Mitch Hoopes, Lou Brock, Earl Thomas, Horace Clarke, Dave Lewis, Jim Kiick, Jerry Sloan, Stan Hindman, and Don Shula.

Part Three is to come!

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Those We’ve Lost in 2020: Part One

As time presses on, we continue to lose many sports figures and pop culture personalities from the RetroCards Era of 1955-1988. In this Part One of Those We’ve Lost in 2020, RetroCards offers a brief memorial by showing a “card that never was.”

Those who have passed and are featured here include: Herb Adderley, Sean Connery, Eddie Van Halen, Sam Wyche, Don Larson, Doug Hart, David Stern, Neil Peart, Allen Brown, Willie Wood, Orson Bean, Robert Conrad, Kelley Nakahra, Ja’Net Dubois, Nesby Glasgow, Gloster Richardson, Del Shofner, Lyle Waggoner, Benny Malone , Curly Neal, Mike Stratton, Jim Wynn, Goldie Sellers, Bobby Mitchell, Timmy Brown, Willie Davis, Mike Curtis, Ken Osmond, Willie Davis, and Ken Riley.

Some of the cards above exist in many RetroCards on this site, so use the search function to find your favorite players.

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The NFLs Golden Boy: Paul Hornung

The NFL’s Golden Boy, Paul Hornung, passed away at the age of 84 on November 13th, 2020. If you were to pick one player on Vince Lombardi’s Green Bay Packer teams that launched that dynasty in the 1960s, it would have to be Paul Hornung.

An unlikely NFL quarterback, the Heisman Trophy winner was drafted number one in 1957 to bolster the hapless Packers at time when the term “Titletown” was a distant memory. In his first two seasons Hornung was under utilized as a runner, receiver, and kicking specialist, tallying only 85 points in his first two seasons. Granted, the team went 3–9 and 1–10–1 in 1957 and 1958 respectively, but Hornung seemed to be a player without a position. A running quarterback at Notre Dame, it was probably a good thing he wasn’t throwing the ball. Then Vince Lombardi arrived in 1959.

With a keen eye for putting where it belongs, Coach Lombardi immediately made Hornung the feature back but also instilled him as a vital blocker for fullback Jim Taylor. His receiving and open field running skills left defenses wondering out how this slow-running “quarterback” was able to run all over them. The halfback option pass was a new weapon Lombardi used seeing Hornung complete 5 of 8 passes for 2 touchdowns.

1960 was his Hall Of Fame season where he racked up 176 points running, receiving, and kicking, a record that stood for 46 until LaDanian Tomlinson broke the record in 13 games (Hornung, of course accomplished the feat in 12 games). He also passed for 2 touchdowns.

A deceptively fast runner, he had the knack for putting a move on a defender as Lombardi explained: “In the middle of the field he may be only slightly better than an average ballplayer, but inside the 20-yard line he is one of the greatest I have ever seen. He smells that goal line.”

His pairing with Jim Taylor made them the most feared runners in the league, especially following the famed Packer power sweep. He led the league in scoring three straight seasons (1959-1961) before a pinched nerve in his neck and a gambling suspension sidelined his career.

 

Career Accomplishments:

• Heisman Trophy winner in 1956

• Finished nine-year career with 760 points on 62 touchdowns, 66 field goals and 190 extra points.

• NFL MVP in 1961

• Scoring leader in 1959, 1960, 1961

• Scored 176 point in 1960 in a 12-game season

• Also passed for 5 touchdowns

• He played on four championship teams (1961, ’62, ‘65 and ’66)

• Scored five touchdowns against the Baltimore Colts in 1965

• Was selected by New Orleans in the 1967 expansion draft, but never played a game for the Saints, instead retiring.

• Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1986.

• His #5 was unofficially retired by Vince Lombardi

 

His talent was noticed even in the White House. Hornung almost missed the Packers’ 1961 title game when he was summoned to duty by the Army, but a call from Lombardi to President John F. Kennedy led to Hornung being granted leave.

Said Kennedy in arranging the leave, “Paul Hornung isn’t going to win the war on Sunday, but the football fans of this country deserve the two best teams on the field that day.”

Hornung scored 19 points — then a title game record — on one touchdown rushing, three field goals and four PATs in the Packers’ 37-0 win over the New York Giants.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement that Hornung “thrilled a generation of NFL fans with his versatility, athleticism and personality.” Goodell added that Hornung was “instrumental in growing the popularity of the Packers and the National Football League.”

Above are several RetroCards that are featured in many team sets found at RetroCards.net.