Sports Artist John Robertson's most recent commercial project (upcoming Milwaukee Bucks 2018) the remodel of the NFL Green Bay Packers football stadium suites area that opened in July 2017 – (8 paintings) and three (8 feet by 15 feet) baseball paintings for the new MLB Atlanta Braves stadium that opened in April 2017. Click on the “About” link for more commercial sports stadiums and arenas work.
The start of this Los Angeles Rams season looks like will lead off with Case Keenum number 17 at quarterback. Keenum, has made a career as backup but has worked hard to hold off the inevitable future of Jared Goff, the No. 1 pick in the NFL draft. Keenum did a good job last year for the LA Rams of taking away Nick Foles job who was later released.
Back when I was a kid my dad used to take me to the LA Rams games in the Los Angeles Coliseum back in the late forties and early fifties. At the time I remember there were two quarterbacks fighting for starting quarterback position; NormVan Brocklin who signed with the Rams out of the draft and joined the Rams who already had a star quarterback, Bob Waterfield. So beginning in 1950, the Rams coach Joe Stydahar solved his problem by platooning Waterfield and Van Brocklin. Later on, In a few more years they brought in Bill Wade. So I was fortunate to see all of them play in Los Angeles. Saw other great LA Rams players also – the great end Tom Fears and the fun running back, “Crazy Legs” Hirsh.
While I mentioned the fabulous nickname of “Crazy Legs” I should also mention my favorite football nickname of all time. Los Angeles Rams defensive back Dick “Night Train” Lane. “Night Train” Lane had gotten the nickname after taking the night trains to away games because of his fear of flying. Lane had the record for most interceptions in an NFL season (14), a record that has stood for over 60 years. He went from an undrafted football player, who worked in a factory but was good enough to be later inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
NFL Rookie of the year Todd Gurley
The other player in the LA Rams painting art is running back Todd Gurley. As the NFL football season starts The Topps Company announced that Todd Gurley, is the cover athlete for the Topps NFL HUDDLE® 2017 app. And we all know why he was selected – because he is the reigning NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. That is why.
Gurley had an absolutely great first season and will try to live up to the great Los Angeles Rams running back Eric Dickerson who in his second season ran for over 2,000 yards. That is almost a “Mission Impossible” but hopefully his offensive line will help him with the goal.
About the Sports Art painting by sports artists John Robertson
The Case Keenum, Todd Gurley NFL football art painting is to honor these two players, one who has had a great beginning and another who has worked hard in his years to become a starting quarterback. I hope they both have a great season. The painting is 4 feet by 6 feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.
Although Dan Marino was one of the greatest quarterbacks in the NFL he never one a championship. (But in 1984 he did lead the Miami Dolphins to the Super Bowl, where the club lost to the San Francisco 49ers led Joe Montana win of 38-16). For example Marino was first rookie to
start at quarterback in the Pro Bowl. That rookie year Marino threw for 20 touchdowns, led the Dolphins to a 12-4 record, and became the NFL’s Rookie of the Year. That’s not a bad start for a quarterback who had five other quarterbacks in that year’s draft taken before he was drafted.
At the time one of the greatest years any quarterback has had in the NFL was by Dan Marino. In that 1984 Super Bowl season he threw for 5,084 yards and 48 touchdowns, both single season records at the time, while also setting new NFL marks for completions with 362. A quote from Dan Marino and his career says it best, ” I just try to be myself, whatever that is. I don’t think about how I’ll be remembered. I just want to be consistent over a long period of time. That’s what the great players do.”
It is always interesting to hear what a quarterback has to say about his coach and how he may feel, as a quarterback, about his leadership role. Marino said this about one of his games. “We’re not running the ball again until we get ahead. Shula was calling the plays, but I told them, ‘I don’t care what he calls. We’re throwing every pass from now until we get the lead.’ To Shula’s credit, he always gave me that option. ”
Miami Dolphins Offensive Center, Tim Ruddy Number 61
Also in the painting is Tim Ruddy a six foot three inch center who was drafted in 1994. When listing the all time top one hundred players for the Miami Dolphins Tim Ruddy comes out around number thirty -two. He spent 10 seasons with the Miami Dolphins and started 140 games.
Oakland Raiders Howie Long, Defensive End
The other image in the painting is of Hall of Fame defensive end Howie Long who played in the Super Bowl XVIII with the Los Angeles Raiders in 1984. He was an 8-time Pro Bowler and one-time Defensive Player of the Year in his career. He recorded 91.5 career sacks and became an NFL sportscaster after retirement.
Sports Art Painting by Sports Artists John Robertson
The painting is three feet by six feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.
I don’t know much about this vintage football quarterback player that I painted from the past. I ran across the image and thought it would be fun to paint. I did some search on Google put could find out anything about him – so I thought I might make up a bit of his history.
Alberte Mortensen – Quarterback
Alberte Mortensen was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1894 to immigrants from Denmark. The family moved to New Jersey shortly after he was born. As a baby he had medical complications with his digestive track which led to difficulties in eating anything that was not white. He only
ate white bread, white noodles, white rice, drank milk and, of course liked ice cream (vanilla). Because he was unhealthy and the family lived in poverty the Mortenen’s asked for help from their Norse church which worshipped the old Norse gods of the Viking age – Thor, Odin and Frigg. The Norse oracle, Völva or “priestess” recommended that they give up Alberte for foster care.
The Mortensen family gave up the four-year-old Alberte to an Irish Catholic family, the Hughes. The Hughes had immigrated to the United States from Ireland during the potato famine. Once in his new home he adapted quite nicely to a diet of white potatoes. His favorite dish was colcannon which became a staple at most of his meals. It is a mash of potatoes, cabbage or kale and butter or cream, flavored with scallions.
Alberte grew heartily on the diet, eventually played on his high school football team, and because of his athletic ability was recruited to play with the a local football “club”. Even though he was only sixteen his skills as a football quarterback made him locally famous. He played for a “pay for play” football team which generated a small income for the Hughes family. Because of his success his biological parents, the Mortensens wanted him back.
The Hughes gave a negative response. As there is no actual word for “no” in Irish Gaelic, they actually said, “Ní hea,” which literally means, “It is not.” The Hughes won in a short court battle and Alberte went on to play college football. He disguised himself as an Indian and went to Carlisle Indian Industrial School where he played football quarterback with Jim Thorpe, the great all-american.
Alberte, was now known as, Abukcheech, which means mouse. Hid first season as quarterback at the Indian school he dedicated to his foster Irish mother, Chloe Hughes. When Alberte turned twenty-one he requested Irish citizenship to play soccer in Ireland. At twenty-two he left for Ireland Upon boarding the boat back to his adopted homeland he said, “I am Irish, I feel Irish, I will play forever in Ireland.”
Sports Artists John Robertson Vintage Football painting is 4 feet by 7 1/2 feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.
I will be in a group Super Bowl Art Show (with three large-scale football paintings)
OPENING RECEPTION: Thursday, January 14th | 7:00 – 9:00 PM
Dwight Clark (#87, Former 49er) was the receiver in the famous “Catch” which refers to the winning touchdown reception by Dwight Clark off a Joe Montana pass in the January 10, 1982, NFC Championship Game between the Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers. The Catch is widely regarded as one of the most memorable events in NFL history. The game represented the end of the Cowboys’ domination in the NFC since the conference’s inception in 1970, and the beginning of the 49ers’ rise as an NFL dynasty in the 1980s. (source: Wikipedia)
Also on hand will be Kyle Nelson (#86, Current 49er, Tight End & Long Snapper)
The Super Bowl is being held in the San Francisco 49er’s Levi Stadium this year which is right down the road from the gallery.
Steve Young was named the MVP (Most Valuable Player) of the NFL twice in 1992 and 1994, and the MVP of Super Bowl XXIX. All-Pro four times and named seven times to the Pro Bowl. Young also won a record six NFL passer rating titles. He was in the National Football League (NFL) for fourteen seasons during the 1980s and 1990s. He is 6-2, 205 lbs and played from 1985-1986 for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and 1987-1999 San Francisco 49ers
Young is also member of the College Football Hall of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. At the time of his retirement, he had the highest passer rating among NFL quarterbacks who have thrown at least 1,500 passing attempts (96.8), and is currently ranked third. He is also still ranked highest amongst retired players.
To me, one of the interesting aspects of Steve Young is that he is a left-handed quarterback – obvious in my painting of Steve Young. I find that interesting because I am also left-handed and aware of other lefties. It was reported (just kidding Steve)) that when Steve Young first picked up a football he asked if it was a left-handed one.
What I had not considered is that being a left-handed quarterback puts more of a burden on the right tackle as he has to protect the blind side of the left-handed quarterback (something the right tackle probably didn’t get much practice at in college) As it is the left tackle for a right-handed quarterback who is protecting the blind side of the normally right-handed quarterback. This is why (generally) a left tackle makes more money than the right tackle – because he is protecting a right-handed quarterback – protecting that blind spot.
There are only a couple of left-handed quarterbacks playing now. And the question arises, why not more? The retired quarterback Phil Simms has an interesting theory
“There’s no conspiracy against left-handed quarterbacks or anything,” he says.. “They’re just all playing baseball now. They’re all pitchers, making much more money in a different sport. It starts at a young age, too. Once the coaches see a lefty with a big arm, they turn him into a pitcher. Percentage-wise, you see far more left-handed pitchers in baseball than you see left-handed quarterbacks in football.”
During his NFL career, Steve Young the left-hander threw for 3,000 or more yards six times and had 20 or more touchdown passes in a season five times, and posted a passer rating of 100 or higher six times. Aside from his passing ability, Young was a constant threat as a runner. He ran for 4,239 yards and scored 43 rushing touchdowns. –
Funny story Steve Young told at his induction speech to the Football Hall of Fame. “Ironically it was my mom who kicked off my football career with a bang as she charged the field when I was 8 years old. She was upset that another kid had neck tackled me and knocked the wind out of me. She knew that neck tackling was illegal and since no penalty was called she felt it imperative to rush the field and help her little boy. I was scared to death as I saw her sprinting across the field, with good speed I might add, assuming she was coming to give me a kiss or something. Imagine the visual: late 1960’s—20’s aged woman, lady, in a dress, on a football field, purse on her shoulder, big sunglasses, high-heeled shoes aerating the field. In horror, she passed by me and grabbed the kid from the other team. Adrenaline pumping, she picked up the boy by the shoulder pads and told him that the hit was illegal and that he better not do it again! Mom, now you know why we never gave you any field level tickets over the last 17 years. My greatest cheerleader.“
Here is an interesting comment by Steve Young about his seven concussions he suffered before retiring in 1999. The interview was on PBS FRONTLINE. Young told FRONTLINE he worries about the toll that routine head hits are taking on linemen and running backs. This is the edited transcript of an interview conducted with FRONTLINE’s Jim Gilmore on March 27, 2013.
Jim Gilmore: “One last thing on the way you played and stuff, and it says something about the intensity of how players play. Your rep was always that you would refuse to be taken out of the game, that you would be basically ready to go back, sort of hide from the coach and whatever and be ready to go back on the field before a replacement or anything else.”
Gilmore: “What was that all about?”
Young: “I think that’s the nature of the game, too. It demands all of you. And the culture is that you can play hurt; you can play wounded. And the culture is that you can get through all. Guys did it all the time, so that’s the hard part.
And that’s what, as we get into concussions, that’s the nefarious nature of concussions, because you can have a bad knee and the doctor looks at it and they watch you run and everyone has 100 percent knowledge. You might say, “Oh, I feel this way.” If you can run, if they can tape it up and you can go, then you can [play], and the doctor can see stability. We know what we’re dealing with, and now we can kind of generally take a pretty good assumption of the risk.
As a player, that’s why concussions are so difficult, because even the experts, even the people that you say, “OK, am I OK?” “I don’t know. How do you feel?” You know, it’s a really tough one.”
In conclusion one of his quotes sums ujp how he felt about playing the game. Steve Young, -“It was a lot of fun. I love coming out here to play. I had a couple of tackles.”