Category Archives: Football

Gallery: 60 Years of Topps football cards


The 60th-consecutive release of Topps football came out last week. Since 1956, the American icon has marked the times for generations of fans and card collectors. There certainly have been some legendary players, dynasties and countless memories made over the last six decades. Here is a 60-card tribute to the brand, from 1956 to 2015.

See them all … after the jump.

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Box Busters: 2015 Topps football cards

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Join Beckett Football‘s Justin Grunert and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2015 Topps in this latest edition of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

Your Turn: Has NFL’s concussion problem influenced your collecting habits?

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One of the NFL’s biggest topics in recent years, the brain damage caused by repetitive head trauma while playing the game, is the subject of an upcoming movie called Concussion starring Will Smith as Dr. Bennet Omalu, the neuropathologist who linked chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, in former NFL players.

The movie arrives on Dec. 25, so we have a long time before it will be in theaters, but you can see the trailer above. It got us wondering. Have stories of past players suffering from CTE — and there have been many in recent years — affected your collecting habits?

Tell us in the comments below.

2015 Topps Football Variations Info and Gallery

2015 Topps Football Variations 1 Aaron Rogers

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

The 2015 Topps Football variation short prints are going to have you looking. It’s a flagship release. Were you expecting anything different?

The list of variations is big and covers a few different areas. Veterans once again come with alternate photos featuring things like big moments and celebrations. Rookies are, once again, a little tougher to see as they use different images from photo shoots where there isn’t the same variety.

The 2015 Topps Football variations checklist also includes some retired players. These are probably the easiest to find as they replaces a current player on the checklist.

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2015 Topps Football Road to Victory entry details

2015 Topps Road to Victory New England Patriots

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Remember those Stadium Club Super Team cards from the 1990s? They were an insert set that had a card for each team. If the team you pulled won the championship, you’d get some exclusive cards. The concept returns to the gridiron with 2015 Topps Football Road to Victory. However, a bit of a mix up on the cards and years of conditioning to do redemptions online may cause a bit of confusion.

But Topps has clarified how collectors can enter their Road to Victory cards and potentially win a set of exclusive parallel cards.

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2015 Topps Football Take It to the House hobby shop promo details

2015 Topps Football Take It to the House Andrew Luck

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

The 2015 Topps Football Take It to the House promotion gives collectors an incentive to head to their local hobby shop as the end of August gives way to the official start of football season.

The promo set is available to those who spend $20 or more on 2015 Topps Football at a participating hobby shop through September 8 will get a coupon. This coupon is good for a pack of Take It to the House cards that can be redeemed between September 9 and 20. Each pack has five cards.

The full 2015 Topps Football Take It to the House set has 100 cards. Veterans, rookies and a handful of retired legends are included on the checklist. Autographs of select players are also randomly inserted.

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2015 Topps Football Buybacks include foil parallel twist

2015 Topps Football Buybacks

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Buybacks are nothing new to Topps sets. Neither is adding a foil stamp. However, the 2015 Topps Football Buybacks takes the concept to a new level with parallel versions. Much like a traditional set of parallels, the different color stamps signify rarity.

But just how rare some of these buybacks are and which cards have buybacks are still something of a mystery.

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2015 Topps Supreme Football First Look

2015 Topps Supreme Football Inscription Autograph Book Card

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

As with past years, 2015 Topps Supreme Football focuses on its premium elements like autographs and memorabilia. There’s also attention to making those cards a little more distinct through designs and themes. But as with any product that delves into the high-end of the hobby, there’s a level of risk that comes with it.

Boxes of the hobby-only product have just four cards, one of which is a serial-numbered autograph, relic or autographed relic.

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Who benefits most from three key NFL injuries?

By David Lee | Beckett Football Editor

Just when you thought your fantasy football team might make it through the NFL preseason unscathed, you are reminded that many ligaments, joints and, apparently, jaws just don’t make it past the August practice rounds. There certainly have been some significant injuries so far this preseason. We look at three that could have significant implications for collectors this fall.


Kelvin Benjamin/Devin Funchess
One of four rookie receivers to haul in 1,000 yards last year, Kelvin Benjamin was projected to be one of the most productive young receivers in the NFL on what looked to be an even more powerful Panthers offense. Many collectors jumped on Benjamin quickly last year as he led all rookie receivers early on. He tore his ACL in practice during preseason, ending his sophomore campaign.

The injury could greatly affect QB Cam Newton, who obviously had found his new favorite target. But it could open up more opportunities for rookie Devin Funchess, also a big target. Funchess is a very affordable hobby rookie right now with plenty of autographs.

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2015 Panini Rookies & Stars Football Cards First Look

2015 Panini Rookies and Stars Longevity DeMarco Murray

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

For years, Rookies & Stars has had a significant retail presence thanks to its Longevity spinoffs. However, 2015 Panini Rookies & Stars Football takes the entire brand to a full retail exclusive. The product is available only at Target.

Unlike many of Panini‘s recent basketball releases produced for the retail giant, 2015 Rookies & Stars Football has just one configuration. Boxes have six packs, each with ten cards. Every pack has either an autograph, memorabilia or manufactured patch card. The basic inserts include the return of Crusade. There’s no shortage of parallels either in any portion of the release.

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2015 Topps Finest football cards info

2015 Topps Finest Football Red Atomic Refractor Die-Cut Autograph

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

When Finest made its gridiron debut in the early 1990s, it was considered among the highest of high-end sets. That’s not the case anymore. Lots has changed since then, but the basic concept of chromium designs and Refractor parallels hasn’t. 2015 Topps Finest Football brings both of those along with some more modern spins.

Each hobby box comes with a Rookie Autograph Patch card, an Autographed Jumbo Relic and a handful of other inserts.

The set has a mini box configuration. Each hobby box has a pair of smaller six-pack boxes. Packs have five cards.

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Box Busters: 2015 Certified football cards

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Join Beckett Football‘s Justin Grunert and Chris Olds as they rip into boxes of 2015 Certified in this episode of Box Busters. 

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

2015 Topps Strata football cards info

2015 Topps Strata Football Strata Signature Rivet Red

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

2015 Topps Strata Football brings with it some fairly radical changes. After three years as a lower-tier product focused largely on a cool box hit, it’s taking a more streamlined approach. Gone are the base cards, basic relics and insert cards. What’s left? Autographs.

Boxes of the hobby exclusive product now have just two cards. The first is the return of the distinct Clear Cut Autographed Relic Rookie cards. There’s also an additional autograph.

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Your Turn: Who’s the one active autograph to own?


By Chris Olds | Beckett Sports Card Monthly Editor

Who the one active-athlete autograph to own in each sport?

It’s a simple question but one that doesn’t always have an easy answer. Some might say that the legends nearing the end of their careers are the one. Others might say the young phenom is the way to go.

My choices will end up in the next issue of Beckett Sports Card Monthly — the latest version of The Autograph Issue — but it wasn’t easy. For baseball, for me, it came down to one of the two autographs above. Perhaps your choice would be different.

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Panini offering replacements for pair of misnumbered 2015 Certified Football cards

2015 Panini Certified Football New Generation Dual Winston Greene

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Just as it’s about to hit shelves, Panini discovered a couple of cards with serial number errors in 2015 Certified Football. And they’re taking action to fix it.

The cards in question are part of the New Generation Dual Jerseys insert set. More specifically, it’s a pair of Mirror Blue parallels. One has swatches from Jamies Winston and Rashad Greene, the other Amari Cooper and T.J. Yeldon.

Rather than being properly numbered to 99, these two cards say they’re out of 19. That in itself wouldn’t be an issue if there were only 19 copies of each card. But there aren’t. There are 99, which will make for some interesting combinations for most.

Panini is making it easy for collectors to send in the cards and exchange them for cards that are numbered properly.

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Totally Fake Rookie Cards: 1969 Topps Kenny Stabler


By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor | Commentary

The late Kenny “Snake” Stabler might be best-known for his legendary days as a member of the Oakland Raiders — a Hall of Fame caliber career that included 15 years in the NFL, more than 27,000 yards and 194 touchdowns.

What collectors might not know about the former league MVP and star in the Silver and Black was that he was drafted not once but three times by Major League Baseball teams.

Why? Apparently the appeal of a left-handed pitcher with a strong arm was just as strong then as it is today.

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2015 Topps Inception Football Rookie Autographs gallery and short print info

2015 Topps Inception Rookie Autographs RA-4 Amari Cooper

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

For 2015 Topps Inception Football, one of the major draws is the combination of on-card autographs and NFL uniforms for rookie players. The Rookie Autographs, which make up the bulk of the product’s signed content, come with a moderately deep checklist of 42 players. It’s big enough to go beyond the top position players heading into the season but it’s not to the point where it’s loaded with scrubs who have little to no chance of starting any time soon — if ever.

But like past years of the brand it looks like several players are available in lesser supply than others.

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Box Busters: 2015 Panini Prestige football cards

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Join Beckett Football’s Chris Olds and Dan Hitt as they rip into a box of 2015 Panini Prestige in this latest episode of Box Busters.

What will they find inside? Watch and find out …

What would the Tom Brady courtroom sketch look like on his Rookie Cards?

2000 Aurora Tom Brady Courtroom Sketch

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

The chances of the Tom Brady courtroom sketch making its way onto a football card are about as likely as the quarterback taking a trip to the moon during his start-of-season suspension.

Because some might think that’s a shame, we’ve gone ahead and asked the big what if.

What would Tom Brady’s Rookie Cards look like if he actually resembled the melting face from the courtroom sketch?

Beware! The results are disturbing.

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2015 Topps Inception Football Rookie Autograph variations? Yes, there are.

2015 Topps Inception Rookie Autographs Variations RA-9 Melvin Gordon Header

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Inception is still a relatively new brand for Topps. For football, it has been rookie autograph-focused. And while that’s still the case with 2015 Topps Inception Football, some unannounced Rookie Autograph variations add a new spin, albeit one that’s familiar with a lot of other brands.

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2015 Panini Playbook Football Cards First Look

2015 Panini Playbook Football Rookie Playbook

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

With 2015 Panini Playbook Football, the brand continues to evolve. While many of the elements are similar to years past, there are some changes. And they’re not just in insert names. This set marks the first time that all of the base cards are done in a book card format.

Boxes maintain a more high-end configuration carrying just three cards. The first is an autographed memorabilia booklet. There’s also an additional signed card or relic. The third card is the booklet-style base card.

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2015 Panini Spectra Football details

2015 Panini Spectra Football Blue

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

2015 Panini Spectra Football is like Prizm meets high-end. It comes with the rainbow of colors and chromium look that Prizm has. But it is also a product that stresses a lot of hits-based content.

Boxes, which have just four packs, come with four autographs and seven memorabilia cards.

Every card in the product is serial numbered to 199 or less.

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2015 Panini Certified football cards details

2015 Panini Certified Football Fabric of the Game

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

With a little more distance from the draft and the Rookie Premiere, 2015 Panini Certified Football is a more hits-based product than the card maker’s earlier products for the season.

It’s a continuation of a brand that has been around in its basic form for more than a decade. However, collectors can trace the Certified name back 20 years as a football brand to 1995 Select Certified. Throughout its history, the product has been home to a lot of foil and color. 2015 is no different.

Ten-pack boxes of 2015 Panini Certified Football come with two autographs and two memorabilia cards. One of these is Freshman Fabric rookie autographed memorabilia card. Boxes also have lots of inserts, three parallels and a pair of basic rookie cards.

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2015 Topps Football cards info and checklist

2015 Topps Football 60th Anniversary Header

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

2015 Topps Football marks the 60th anniversary of the company breaking into the sport with 1955 Topps All-American. You know they’re not going to let a milestone like that slip by.

And it doesn’t. The 60th anniversary theme weaves throughout all reaches of the product including the base set, inserts and autographs.

As with past flagship Topps releases, the set is one of the largest of the year. And that’s before factoring any inserts in.

Hobby boxes come with either an autograph or a memorabilia card. Jumbo boxes have a pair of autographs as well as an exclusive Rookie Patch card.

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First Look: 2015 Topps Fire football cards


By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

2015 Topps Fire Football is big, bold and anything but traditional.

The sophomore release, which once again includes the digital art of Tyson Beck, has a base set that’s unlike many other in the collecting world. Hobby boxes come with a pair of autographs or autographed relics as well as nearly 40 additional inserts and parallels.

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Copyright issue leaves eBay seller feeling D-Fence-less

2015 Panini Prizm Draft Football D-Fense Richard Sherman

“De-Fence! De-Fence!”

It’s a chant heard at almost every football, basketball and hockey game no matter the level of play. And if you stop to take each syllable in a literal sense, it brings up a simple image of a ‘D’ alongside a white picket fence.

But, as at least one eBay seller has found out, that image can lead to listings being pulled and even a suspension from the site.

It turns out the “D-Fence” image has been subject to a copyright for more than 20 years. And the company that holds it is doing what they can to enforce it, even when it comes to dealers selling cards they’ve pulled from packs.

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Still Burning — Topps Fire football returns in 2015

2015 Topps Fire Base Frank Gore

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Following one of the most distinct debuts of 2014, the Topps Fire flame continues to burn. Both Topps and digital artist Tyson Beck confirmed via Twitter that 2015 Topps Fire Football is on the way.

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Remembering a Football Great: Vintage Frank Gifford cards timeline

1962 Topps Frank Gifford

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

Frank Gifford wasn’t just a great football player. He was also one of the game’s greatest voices, appearing on Monday Night Football for more than 25 years. Looking back at vintage Frank Gifford cards not only chronicle the career of a Hall of Famer, but a Golden Age in early football cards as well.

The halfback’s first cards came out during his rookie season in 1952 Bowman Large Football and 1952 Bowman Small Football. Bowman was experimenting with its dimensions at the time, which led to the dual releases. The large version, which shows Gifford from his college days, is the more valuable of the two. Bowman would continue to include Gifford in their annual NFL sets through 1955.

In 1956, Topps took over the NFL license. This coincided with Gifford’s MVP season when he set a career high with 819 rushing yards.

Because of an injury, Gifford sat out the 1961 season so he doesn’t have cards in any mainstream sets that year. His retirement was short-lived, though, returning in 1962. With that came one last Topps card from his playing days.

1964 Philadelphia Football marked Gifford’s last card as an active player.

Scrolling through Gifford’s cards, they chart how football cards evolved in the 1950s and ’60s, going from painted images to photographs with more complex designs. They also show how the NFL license jumped around to various card makers.

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2015 Topps Allen & Ginter National Die-Cut checklist

2015 Topps Allen and Ginter Baseball National Die-Cut Kris Bryant

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

One of the most popular exclusives at this year’s National were the 2015 Topps Allen & Ginter National Die-Cuts.

Given to collectors who brought a sealed box of 2015 Topps Allen & Ginter Baseball to the company’s booth, the cards have the basic design elements with the addition of the X-shaped die-cut in honor of the brand’s tenth year. However, the checklist is very different, which is likely contributing to the set’s popularity on the secondary market. Delving beyond just baseball and a few of Ginter’s traditional quirks, the set also includes a sizable amount of football players.

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First Look: 2015 Topps Museum Collection football

2015 Topps Museum Collection Football Framed Oversized Autographed Patch Card

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

The configuration might be familiar, but 2015 Topps Museum Collection Football is taking something of a different approach with its design. The focus is still on the autographs and memorabilia, but the darker look should help differentiate it from other releases under the brand’s banner.

2015 Topps Museum Collection Football boxes are packaged as four mini boxes, each with its own hit. As in the past, each master box has one autographed relic, an on-card autograph, a jumbo relic and a quad relic. Twelve-box cases deliver an autographed jumbo relic and a framed autograph.

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First Look: 2015 Donruss football cards

2015 Donruss Football Base Russell Wilson

By Ryan Cracknell | Hobby Editor

As far as modern brands go, Donruss is one that’s familiar with a lot of collectors. And while the name has been used in numerous football sets over the last 15 years, it has been a standalone product just once. That was back in 2002. More often than not, though, in football it has been attached to other sets like Donruss Elite and Donruss Classics. It gets back to its basic roots with 2015 Donruss Football.

Like recent baseball and basketball releases, the focus is largely a throwback one. Except Donruss and football don’t have a lot to throwback to. But those familiar with Donruss baseball history in the 1980s and ’90s will recognize many of the insert names and designs.

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Topps releases remaining NSCC sets online



By Chris Olds | Beckett Baseball Editor

If you missed the show of all shows, Topps has two show-only releases that you can still get — at least for a limited time.

Three limited sets of 5-by-7 baseball cards — one featuring notable Chicago icons and the other featuring game’s biggest young stars on High Tek stock — were only found at the National Sports Collectors Convention but now are available now on Two other sets showcase young stars of the NFL.

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First Look: 2015 Panini Gridiron Kings football cards

2015 Panini Gridiron Kings Rookie Red Frame

Following in the footsteps of Diamond Kings and Court Kings, 2015 Panini Gridiron Kings Football focuses on an art-based touch.

Boxes are moderately small, arriving with 12 packs. Each has eight cards. As far as what’s in each box, there’s one autograph, one memorabilia card and more than a dozen additional inserts and parallels.

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Scenes at the show: National Sports Collectors Convention (Friday)



You can find virtually anything at the National Sports Collectors Convention. Look for a gallery of images — just a small selection of scenes from the show — after the jump.

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2015 Panini Prestige Football Variations

2015 Prestige Football Variations

2015 Panini Prestige Football variations are plentiful. That said, they’re not hard to spot. Rather than just a straightforward image swap, the set offers two different looks for rookies.

All base set rookie cards show first-year players in their college uniforms. Their NFL teams and draft spot are prominent, but they’re distinctly NCAA-themed as far as the images go.

A total of 40 players have variations in Prestige that show them in their NFL gear.

2015 Panini Prestige Football variations are not hard to pull falling 1:6 packs or four per hobby box. This should keep prices in line and make it a little more realistic for those wanting to track them all down.

You can see all the variations and their base cards for easy reference at the jump.

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