Jim Kelly

Jim Kelly

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Artist Statement

Jim Kelley played 11 seasons with the Buffalo Bills after three seasons in the USFL with the Houston Gamblers. He led the Bills to a record four consecutive Super Bowls from the 1990 season to 1993 season. Inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2002, Jim was known for his tenacity and perseverance. Reaching four consecutive Super Bowls is an amazing accomplishment. Even though they lost all four, having the fortitude and work ethic to attain that level of excellence—for that extended amount of time in a mental and physically demanding sport like football—is an incredible accomplishment.

The Bills at that time ran the “K-Gun” (no-huddle offense), which was a fast-paced style of play that kept defenses off guard and limited their ability to make substitutions. Kelley’s mastery of the offense and his ability to make quick decisions and deliver accurate passes to his receivers turned the Bills into an NFL juggernaut during the early ’90s. 

The “K-Gun” nickname for the offense became the inspiration for the Machine Gun Kelly painting. The concept was meant to playfully portray the charismatic leader of a formidable Bills machine that was mowing down opposing teams during their reign.

Although completed as part of the Fleer Pro-Vision series, this painting was unfortunately never issued as part of the line.