|1996 Pro Line Autographs|
Jeff Lewis (card # 38)
You might ask yourself, "Who?" Jeff Lewis.
He was a quarterback at my alma mater, Northern Arizona University. I didn't see him play. Heck, he was only in grade school when I attended college.
He was a fine student athlete and then went on to the pros, playing a few seasons with the Broncos, behind John Elway, and then a few seasons with the Panthers behind Steve Beuerlein. He didn't fare well in the pros, completing only 54 passes with no TDs.
He then was an assistant coach at the University of Louisville and then at NAU.
He died in January of 2013, just over a year ago.
As I was doing research to flesh out this blog I came across an article from the Charlotte Observer that discusses the results of his autopsy
Former Carolina Panthers quarterback Jeff Lewis, once thought to be the team’s quarterback of the future, died in January as a result of an accidental drug overdose, according to an autopsy report obtained by the Observer.This doesn't make me happy. I've been looking at his cards for the last 12 months and finally found one that was going to do it for me on ebay. I picked it up. Delivered for less than $3. I created a checklist and a plan. I wasn't going to try to get each of the different cards. Just a rookie, an auto, a card from his last year in Denver, a card from the first and last years in Carolina. Five cards.
The autopsy found morphine and zolpidem, a sedative and sleep aid more commonly known as Ambien, in Lewis’ blood.
Medication containers and handwritten documents found in Lewis’ Phoenix home indicated a possible history of prescription medication abuse, including zolpidem and the painkiller hydrocodone, Maricopa County medical examiner Kevin Horn wrote in his report.
Tragic ending for a young man. It makes me sad and I'm now I don't know if I want to collect his cards.