Panini America officials on Friday afternoon provided a glimpse of what promises to be one of the most coveted football cards of the summer: Tim Tebow’s limited-edition, Broncos-variation 2010 Prestige Rookie Card.
The card, in production just hours after Tebow’s headline-making selection by Denver in the first round of Thursday night’s 2010 NFL Draft – is set to arrive in stores by mid May in packs of 2010 Prestige Football.
A rabid, far-reaching collector base is expected to be waiting with open arms, and wallets.
“Being the special player and public figure that he is, Tebow being drafted in the first round makes him the bona fide No. 1 guy out of the gate, more collectible than Sam Bradford,” says Scott Prusha, Panini America’s marketing director. “People didn’t know where he was going to land and he landed in the first round on a very collectible team as the second quarterback taken. He’s going to be a collecting superstar.”
Panini also is producing a Florida Gators version of Tebow’s Rookie Card for 2010 Prestige Football.
Prusha insists that Tebow going No. 25 overall places this class – after just one round – on the same level as the celebrated 2006 draft class, at least in terms of hype.
“It just puts this rookie class into another category,” he says. “The media has been talking all day about Tim Tebow. He’s going to make people pay more attention to trading cards. So is Dez Bryant in Dallas, Bradford and a guy like C.J. Spiller. These guys are landing in markets where they’re going to play.
“If they produce, this class is going to compete with 2006 as far as hype and with ’06 and ’07 as far as performance on the field.”
Beckett Senior Market Analyst Dan Hitt places early value estimates on the Tebow card at between $40 and $50 but cautions: “As hot as he is and will be, and given how many people will want one, that could be way low.”
Tracy Hackler is the editorial director for Beckett Media. Have a comment or question? Send an e-mail to him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter by clicking here.