I'm willing to bet maybe 1% of the people on my blog roll know who Mohammed Massaquoi is. And that's even with my having posted about him a few weeks back.
Now I know, as a football card collector in a baseball card collector universe, it isn't too weird to find a football player that not a lot of people know about. Heck, a Matt Schaub or Ryan Fitzpatrick can sneak by in that case. But here we have a guy who not only plays football but also was a mid 2nd round pick AND a Cleveland Brown during some of their most terrible years offensively. So I'm really not surprised if no one knows who he is.
So why am I collecting Mohamed Massaquoi? Well, 2009 and 2010 were dark years in Cleveland, but Massaquoi made them as good as he could. In 2009 he was Derek Anderson/Brady Quinn's favorite weapon with 95 targets (the next highest WR for targets was Chansi Stuckey with 40) which he turned into 34 receptions for 624 yards and 3 touchdowns. All three of these numbers LED THE 2009 BROWNS (and the yards one led by a substantial margin).
In 2010, Massaquoi again led WR in targets (with 73 to Stuckey's 63) and receiving yards (with 483), though both Ben Watson and Peyton Hillis bested him in both categories. But still, he was the Browns WR1 in both of these awful, awful years.
Even in 2011, when Greg Little became the top target guy, Massaquoi was arguably the better WR given Little's drops. So it was somewhat of a surprise when, in 2012, the Browns had Little, Josh Gordon, TE Jordan Cameron, and Travis Benjamin all outproduce Massaquoi in the targets department. He went from top dawg (lol) to low man on the totem pole in one season thanks to two huge additions at WR. And thanks to the Browns desire to stand by top pick Little while giving Benjamin the slot/long ball reps he truly deserved, Massaquoi was pushed out. He signed on with the Jags and Jets prior to the 2013 season, but neither team kept him past preseason and as a result he has since been out of football, awaiting a chance to return.
So a very quick career for some very bad teams, so quick and bad that many fans have forgotten him, if they even remembered him in the first place. But I really appreciate what Massaquoi did for those awful Browns teams (especially the 2010 Browns with Seneca Wallace) and as a result of finding him under appreciated figured he was worthy of my collecting respect.
So I grabbed this nice 2 color/2 piece jersey card /249 on Ebay recently:
And also figured I'd re-show off a few base cards I had lying around from previous trades:
Very nice looking cards, and after writing this all up I'm pretty psyched to become a Mohamed Massaquoi collector. He won't be under appreciated by the GSNHOF, that's for sure!