Super Bowl XXV was held at Tampa Stadium on January 27, 1991, and the event was memorable for so many reasons. Now deceased Pop singer Whitney Houston sang a rousing rendition of the National Anthem in front of 74,000 fans to kick things off. The New York Giants and Buffalo Bills played a hotly contested battle that wasn’t decided until the game’s final play; a missed 47-yard field goal by Bills’ placekicker Scott Norwood that went wide right enabled the G-Men to escape with a 20-19 decision and their second Lombardi Trophy in five years. It was also Hall of Fame linebacker Lawrence Taylor’s final Super Bowl as he retired three years later. Now collectors can get their hands on an extremely rare pair of game-worn cleats from “LT,” the very pair he wore that night in Tampa. The coveted cleats are now on the auction block at SCP Auctions. The company’s current Mid-Summer Classic online auction concludes on Saturday, August 22.
The white size 13 Nike/Pro cleats show considerable game wear and are covered with grass stains, dirt and even chunks of lime from the field littering the sides and bottom of both cleats. Even the original shoe laces remain intact. The consignor of the cleats is Taylor’s old Giants’ teammate and fellow linebacker, Gary Reasons. They teamed together in both of the Giants two Super Bowl victories and since their lockers were always right next to one another – Taylor wore No. 56 and Reasons wore No. 55 – they spent ample time talking shop before and after games. Reasons took possession of the cleats that same night in Tampa as Taylor looked at him and said, “I guess I won’t be needing these for a while” (he was headed to Honolulu to play in the Pro Bowl on a turf field), and left the pair in front of his locker. Reasons put them in his travel bag and has held on to them for the past 25 years. The lot includes a detailed letter of provenance from Reasons.
Online bidding is open to registered bidders only. The minimum starting bid for this item is $10,000. The auction is being conducted at SCP Auctions. For more information, call 949-831-3700. -Terry Melia
Picked by the Cleveland Browns in the first round of the 1957 NFL Draft, Syracuse All-American Jim Brown would go on to an historic, Hall of Fame, nine-year NFL career. By the time Brown retired he was the career leader in rushing touchdowns (106), career rushing yards (12,312) and single-season rushing yards (1863). For four of those nine years the NFL only played a 12-game schedule so those marks have since been eclipsed, but by those playing 14 to 16 games a season. One record that hasn’t fallen is that Brown remains the only player in NFL history to average more than 100 yards per game over an entire career. Now Brown’s 1957 Rookie contract with Cleveland, which was signed and dated during the first week of January, is on the auction block at www.scpauctions.com with bidding scheduled to close this Saturday, April 25. A featured item in SCP Auctions’ online Spring Premier, it could fetch as much as $35,000.
“Jim Brown’s 1957 Rookie contract has to be one of the most important pieces of Jim Brown memorabilia known and is certainly among the most significant football related documents in existence,” said SCP Auctions Vice President Dan Imler.
Measuring 8″ x 19-5/8” the one page yellow document is in very nice condition, with the usual horizontal folds. The “NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE STANDARD PLAYERS CONTRACT,” features all the printed legal details plus typewritten specific notes regard Team (“CLEVELAND BROWNS INC”), City (“CLEVELAND, OHIO”), Year (“1957″), Player’s Name (“JIMMY BROWN”), and Schedule of Payment (“75% of said salary in weekly installments commencing with the first and ending with the last regularly scheduled League game played by the Club during such season and the balance of 25% of said sum at the end of the last regularly scheduled League game.”). The annual salary, “$12,000.00″, is hand written in blue ink.
The historic document has been signed on the bottom left by legendary NFL Commissioner Bert Bell (d.1959). On the right side is a near perfect Blue ink “James N. Brown” signature (9-10/10) along with that of Cleveland Browns scout Richard Gallagher (9-10/10). Two witnesses have also signed on the left. On the back is a handwritten addendum written by Gallagher that reads: “In consideration for signing this contract the Cleveland Browns Inc., agree to pay Jim Brown $3000.00 (three thousand dollars) at his option (as a bonus for signing this contract). Both Jim Brown and Gallagher have signed this article in the same blue ball point pen. Brown responded with a strong rookie season for the Browns, leading the league in rushing yards (942), rushing touchdowns (9) and rushing yards per game (78.5). Brown never missed a game due to injury and would lead the NFL in rushing for his first five years in a row and in eight of his nine seasons overall. After leading the Browns to an 11-3 record and the NFL Title Game in 1965, Brown retired at the age of 29 to enter the motion picture business.
Online bidding is open to registered bidders only and concludes on Saturday, April 25. The auction is being conducted online at www.scpauctions.com. For more information, call 949-831-3700. -Terry Melia
Pittsburgh Steelers great Rod Woodson is selling nearly his entire collection of memorabilia, including his rings, trophies and jerseys. The collection being auctioned by California-based SCP Auctions has more than 70 items from the legendary safety’s career, including his Hall of Fame ring, two AFC Championship rings, his Super Bowl XXXVII game-used Raiders jersey, his game-worn Purdue jersey from the 1984 Peach Bowl and four Pro Bowl uniforms.
SCP Auctions is proud to announce that it has secured the personal memorabilia collection of former NFL great Rod Woodson. The Hall of Fame defensive back’s coveted lineup of game-used jerseys, AFC Championship rings and multitude of accolades and trophies will hit the online auction block on Wednesday, April 8, at SCPAuctions.com. It features nearly 70 lots of Woodson’s most prominent items including dozens of game balls from his alma mater (Purdue) as well as his 17-year pro career, various MVP awards and his NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team trophy which he was awarded in 1994.
“I was blessed with a long career in the NFL,” said Woodson, who now serves as assistant defensive backs coach for the Raiders, “and I was able to acquire quite a few mementoes from my playing days. Now I feel good about consigning with SCP Auctions and sharing these with passionate football fans and collectors who would be interested in adding them to their collections.”
Woodson was a standout defensive back who played 17 hard-hitting seasons in the NFL from 1987 to 2003. A native of Fort Wayne, Indiana, he was a three-sport star at Snider High School before accepting a full scholarship to play football at Purdue University. As a Boilermaker, Woodson was a two-time All-America selection at defensive back (‘85 and ’86) and was a three-time All-Big Ten Conference First Team selection. He was also a member of Purdue’s track team and was twice awarded All-America honors as a hurdler after finishing second at the 1985 NCAA championships and third at the ‘87 NCAA championships, both times in the 55-meter event.
Selected in the first round of the ‘87 NFL Draft by the Pittsburgh Steelers (No. 10 pick overall), Woodson made a huge impact in the Steel City. For 10 seasons Woodson was one of the NFL’s most feared corners as he recorded 644 tackles, made 38 interceptions (five returned for touchdowns) and recovered 21 fumbles. In 1993, he was named the NFL’s AP Defensive Player of the Year. A six-time First-Team All-Pro selection, he was named to the Pro Bowl 11 times, setting a record for defensive backs. He won his only Super Bowl title as a free safety with the Baltimore Ravens in 2000 and completed his career with the Oakland Raiders in 2003. He finished with 71 interceptions (third best overall) and still owns the NFL record with 12 picks returned for touchdowns. To no one’s surprise, he was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2009, in his first year of eligibility. -Terry Melia