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Redskins Receiver Anthony Armstrong Catches his First Official Rookie Card

March 30, 2011

Texas native Anthony Armstrong ran a rather circuitous route to the NFL before making a huge splash during his breakout rookie season with the Washington Redskins in 2010.

The speedy Armstrong spent much of his formative football years indoors — with both the Indoor Football League and the Arena Football League — and then graduated to the practice squads of the Miami Dolphins and Redskins, respectively.

But when he finally earned a spot on the active roster in D.C., his fast feet and soft hands were perfectly suited for FedEx Field, where Armstrong kept delivering one big play after another. He finished his first season in the NFL with 44 receptions for 871 yards and three touchdowns. He averaged a staggering 19.8 yards per catch as a rookie, third-best in the league behind only DeSean Jackson and Mike Wallace.

In February, Armstrong was going long again, this time on a plane flying home to Dallas, where he connected with Andrew TolentinoBeckett Media assistant editor and one of Armstrong’s classmates at Newman Smith High School in Carrollton, Texas. Armstrong drew double coverage in Dallas — from Tolentino and Panini America’s Tracy Hackler — on a special video (below) during which the Redskins’ star caught, for the first time, his first NFL Rookie Card from 2010 Certified Football.

While filming the video, Armstrong was nice enough to sign copies of the card for Beckett Media and Panini America to give away. You can find out how to win Beckett’s prized Armstrong card here. To be eligible to win the one he autographed for Panini America, simply tell us in a comment to this post what you think of Armstrong’s breakout season and what you think of his box-busting debut, which you can see in its entirety below. 

32 Comments leave one →
  1. Paul permalink
    March 30, 2011 11:53 am

    Great season for someone without much NFL experience, box breaking takes a lot of practice too

  2. Derrick permalink
    March 30, 2011 11:55 am

    I think he had an awesome year, I did not know he had put up numbers like that.I see Pro bowl written all over his face.Any box break debut is great as long as your Busting a box of Panini!

  3. billy Blaylock permalink
    March 30, 2011 12:01 pm

    Always cool to see a Guy that wasn’t a bonus baby make a dream come true. Fun seeing him get a card…had to be icing on the cake for the season.

  4. Scott Neuroth permalink
    March 30, 2011 12:01 pm

    It is always nice to see a person who works hard and has to start at the bottom and earn his way to the top have success. Being from Iowa it kind of reminds me of Kurt Warner’s story and how he made it as a NFL superstar after being in the Arena League for the Iowa Barnstormers and also having to stock shelves at Hy-Vee to get by. Great debut on the the box busting and made it entertaining to watch.

  5. Jeff J. permalink
    March 30, 2011 12:02 pm

    I love his great stories, and he seems like a nice, humble guy, I wish him well! His reception average for a rookie with at least 44 receptions is the fifth highest all-time and highest after 1965!

  6. Mark D'Angelo permalink
    March 30, 2011 12:12 pm

    Very cool, I had Anthony on my fantasy football roster for almost all of the year last year! I knew he always one big play away from making a great impact because he has such great speed and big play-making ability. Also thought it was cool to hear that he went to Target and bought some cards haha it makes me wonder which players collect cards of themselves!

  7. Mark R permalink
    March 30, 2011 12:30 pm

    you obviously know the collectors want on card autos

  8. March 30, 2011 12:38 pm

    I think he had a great year for the Redskins Without having any NFl experience I think he could be a pro bowl receiver he had a great box breaking skills he knew what the cards were and he knew the players

  9. Todd permalink
    March 30, 2011 12:48 pm

    As a Skin fan I was wondering why we would keep a 27 year old rooie from West TeaxsAM thats was clamied off the Dophins PS now I see why so thanks for proving me wrong .I look forward to seeing what he can do this year

  10. Matt permalink
    March 30, 2011 1:17 pm

    Nice to see a guy who has worked hard for that many years finally make it. He Definitely put up some impressive numbers this past season, so I’m looking forward to his future performances. Some good box breaking going on too. It has to be strange seeing yourself on a card like that. Would only further solidify his sense of “making it”.

  11. Brian permalink
    March 30, 2011 1:27 pm

    I am a huge skins fan and love seeing things like this. Armstrong was a great impact on the team and hope he stays for a while!

  12. Samuel Breniman permalink
    March 30, 2011 1:31 pm

    As a lifetime Redskins fan, Anthony was one of the few bright spots for me this year. If you’re a fan, you know it’s been a LONG time since we’ve had a good home-grown WR. With him, Brandon Banks and Terrence Austin, I actually have some hope for our receiving corps of the future!

    As for the card, it’s hard to think of a guy more deserving them him. Someone who worked his butt off to make it deserves this kind of recognition. I hope it was a great moment for him!

  13. March 30, 2011 2:03 pm

    What a good dude, I need to track down his card. It was good of you Tracy to get him some of his cards, you can tell it meant a lot to him.

    • March 30, 2011 4:47 pm

      Just an FYI that Armstrong also has a Rookie Card in Playoff Contenders (#100) that released after Certified.

  14. tim permalink
    March 30, 2011 2:34 pm

    It’s good to see guys like him can still make it, albeit, the hard way. Shades of Kurt Warner here and we all know the way he turned out. Glad he got some recognition and I’m sure he loved it!

  15. Zach Thiel permalink
    March 30, 2011 3:09 pm

    Not quite the success as Kurt Warner when he came out and shocked us all but I still remember trying to hunt down Kurt’s very first rookie card.

  16. March 30, 2011 3:14 pm

    Cool! Armstrong is a GREAT guy AND player! I like him AND Pepsi from morning to night that’s all I drink! What’s it going to take to win that Autographed Pepsi card!
    Dave in Mass

  17. Dave Newton permalink
    March 30, 2011 5:01 pm

    Mr. Armstrong is a well rounded rookie and is only going to get better with time. I love rookies and i really love signed rookie cards. Great job on the break and hopes for a healthy long career for him.

  18. jay L permalink
    March 30, 2011 5:06 pm

    this guy is really cool, he seems to really enjoy his own card too. Plus he is a texas native which makes even more of a person i want to collect and watch play.

  19. Clint Neidig permalink
    March 30, 2011 6:30 pm

    Anthony had a great rookie season. As a Redskins fan I believe he was one of the few bright spots on the team last season. I hope he gets every opportunity to become an elite receiver on the team. His box-busting abilities aren’t too bad either.

  20. chris bradley permalink
    March 30, 2011 6:59 pm

    Mr. Armstrong had a great break out season .I hope there is no lockout so we can see how much he has improved from last season,which could be scary good.As for as his performance on Box Busters,it was refreshing to see a player of his caliber hang out and have fun with the hobby like we do!

  21. Jordan Gohman permalink
    March 30, 2011 9:36 pm

    It’s nice to see someone’s hard work and determination pay off. Armstrong seems like a pretty grounded kid, you don’t see too many up and comming stars take time out like this as a payback to devoted fans. With another year under his belt and some good numbers he can be a real threat. Breaking a box with one of the dudes who is on the cardboard just seems pretty awesome to me!

  22. Craig Stewart permalink
    March 30, 2011 9:47 pm

    Seems like an easy going guy who really enjoyed breaking the packs, unlike some other athletes that have “sat in the chair” and watched the “pro’s” open them. His potential is unlimited thanks to the hard work/dedication and perservierence he’s demonstrated by traveling the tough road to the NFL. . I wish him the best! Great story! And Tracy..I STILL want one of those shirts! Thanks for the video!

  23. Matthew Gilman permalink
    March 31, 2011 7:23 am

    Really nice cards!! I always like to root on an underdog! And would be awesome to win one of those cards! Thanks for the oppurtunity and good luck to all!!!

  24. Drew Austin permalink
    March 31, 2011 7:36 am

    I think it’s always great to see someone hit the NFL after working for it that hard. He definately took a non-traditional way to get to the NFL, and I’m happy to see him living his dream out.

  25. kent chisler permalink
    March 31, 2011 2:28 pm

    Keep up the hard work, both sports take lots of practice!

  26. Andrew Walker permalink
    March 31, 2011 6:57 pm

    Very interesting facts and excellent job on interview. Great way for rookie receiver Anthony Armstrong to get due recognition with all the very hard work and dedication to what he enjoys doing. Look forward to seeing him in Detroit and would love to hear his thoughts regarding the Lions sensational rookie defenseman Suh. By the way, I hope you guys helped Anthony out with some great pulls of his own rookie cards.

  27. Kyung Soo permalink
    April 1, 2011 1:30 am

    Seems like a really, really, really, nice, cool, awesome dude.
    The kid seems extremely humble and you can see the excitement he has seeing and pulling some new cards. I’m a huge Bears fan and I remember watching the Bears/Redskins game last season and he caught 2 catches for something like 40 yards. First thing I remember was me cursing (Bears ended up losing) then me seeing how ridiculously fast Armstrong was.

    Really hope he makes it big. You’re right, if he averages 19 ypc he’ll be a sure HOFer!!

    Lol at Anthony talking about meeting Derrick Thomas’ mom after pulling the nice patch. I also wonder what if feels like for him to pull his own teammates’ cards. Tracy make sure that is a question you ask to future sit-ins with athletes!!

  28. Mark Wines permalink
    April 1, 2011 9:55 am

    Great to see such a great guy fulfill his dream!!!! Go Anthony!! Go Skins!!!

  29. Rich permalink
    April 1, 2011 4:23 pm

    Team Armstrong and Hail to the Redskins… enough said!

  30. Jordan Gohman permalink
    April 8, 2011 5:03 pm

    And the Anthony Armstrong Auto (AAA) goes to….

    Nice promo by the way, thanks for all the good stuff!

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