Today and yesterday brought some high profile rookies from 2013. "Ziggy" Ansah could very well be that missing piece that finally gets the Lions into playoff contention this year. Justin Hunter has been a pretty great addition for the Titans as well. The Hunter card is # 18A meaning that he's got a type B card out there as well. I got curious as to the insertion rate of these photo variations and I believe the number is 1:320 packs, so pretty damn rare, probably something like 1 per case. There appear to be 55 shortprints in the 220 card set. Even averaging at 10 dollars a card these extra photo variations cards would end up running you $550 give or take a few bucks. That could be kind of an expensive set and one that could easily be mistaken for commons if you think about this for a second. A person that was not familiar with the set wouldn't even notice the difference or understand the rarity of these cards. They'd look like 10 cent commons in the eyes of someone passingly familiar with football cards. This could appeal to some people but I think if these were appropriately marked on the back at least it would be far better. I have not seen any of the SPs in person so if I'm wrong about this, please let me know.
Saturday, August 30, 2014
Thursday, August 28, 2014
This is my second Patrick Willis add for this month! This one's card # 12 and indicates that Willis went to the ProBowl in 2012. I'm kind of surprised that this one didn't get a photo variation as popular as Willis is with defensive collectors and 49ers fans. There's only a few guys that get much value in the hobby as defensemen. Urlacher and Ray Lewis come to mind but now they're retired I would say Willis, being a perennial pro bowler and being from a large market team like the niners would be one of the top people that collectors go after.If Clowney does well this year I can see people jumping on that bandwagon too. Great defenders are good for the hobby because it's not all about the QBs and the running backs. All positions are important and it's time that collectors saw the value of other players outside Aaron Rodgers and Eddie Lacy.
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
I'm a huge Broncos fan and my favorite position is running back. Stands to reason that this is my favorite card and a great reason to go ahead and purchase the set outright after buying a box that had roughly 30 percent of the base cards I needed. Based on some of the higher end versions of this card like the autographed base, the autographed refractor /150 and others there is huge movement on this guy in the offseason.
People are expecting Ball to be a 1500 yard back this year in a prolific Broncos offense. Obviously there's a lot of "what ifs" to be answered but I'm hoping it happens. I drafted him in my fantasy league and I hope that all the analysts and so-called experts are right about him. I even passed over Eddy Lacy who has more game time experience; in retrospect that might have been kind of dumb. I usually don't let team affiliation play any part in how I draft but I think this time I let my emotions take over rather than doing what I know I should have. Only time will tell as with either second year back quite a lot can happen over the course of 16 games.
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Going along in the set in order, here's the next addition to my 2013 Topps Chrome completed base set. This is #9 and features a pretty good rookie for the Texans drafted in the second round. Peyton Manning and the second year corner got into it a bit this Saturday and Manning got hit with an unsportsmanlike penalty for saying "Fuck You" according to a couple sources.
I'm not sure what went down exactly because I was at a friends house not paying as much attention to the game as I normally would and of course the news sources water everything down like pussies right before showing a shitty McDonalds commercial for the billionth time so unless you saw it first hand you'll probably never know. This is sort of why I hate watching games at a bar or at a friends house, you miss so much of the action.
Monday, August 25, 2014
This is one of those cards that you can expect will be pretty unimportant five years from now. A sixth round pick for the Bengals he was largely overshadowed by some kid named Giovani Bernard picked by the same team in the same draft. A knee injury during the preseason has cut down his limited playing time as well.
Going through the Beckett organize feature I notice that lower tier rookies have far less variations for their cards than do the well-known guys like Tavon Austin and Geno Smith. Compare yesterday's addition of Gavin Escobar where one could conceivably buy 52 variations of his Topps Chrome Rookie whereas Burkhead has a "paltry" 20 cards, this even includes his Superfractor and the 4 printing plates. This makes tons of sense as you don't really need a jersey card of some guy that Topps isn't even expecting to make an impact on the game in the long term. That being said we do end up having tons of autographs and jersey cards of nobodys. Just take a look at the search term "auto lot" and you'll see as many 1 dollar jersey cards and autographs as you can handle. For every Tony Romo rookie there are 1000 Cierre Wood or Jared Lorenzen cards that get made that only matter to set collectors and team collectors.
Sunday, August 24, 2014
Today's card, another rookie from 2013 Topps Chrome, this one is # 7 in the set. Tight ends don't typically get much hobby love but this didn't stop Topps from making 52 different variants of this rookie card. 52! If you think about this for a second, that's why team collecting and even player collecting for any given year is impossible. Collectors have to resign themselves to getting the best cards they can and either give up on the rest or add them whenever possible later on through the years. You'd be surprised what players people will still be going after years later. Personally the only player collection I've gathered more than 100 cards of is of Clinton Portis. Honestly, player collecting can't hold my attention very much over time, especially because Portis has been retired for some time now.
Some people on Beckett.com go after various players like Mark Brunell (There's a big time guy named Jade Rock who's managed to amass over 90% of his cards including multiple copies of his cards numbered to 5 or less). To do that you really have to have dedication. I have dedication as well but for me, sets have been the only thing I could concentrate on to any degree. There's a beginning and an end. You focus on a set and it takes as long as it takes. It took me over 7 years to build my 1999 Spx set which included autographed rookies of Donovan McNabb, Tim Couch and Ricky Williams. The reason it took me so long is I waited for values to go down to acceptable levels. The last card in my collection was the 1999 SPx Tim Couch which I paid 30 dollars for; that's even high by today's standards I think, but you'd be really hard pressed to find one for sale, or at least that was my assumption. When I bought it he was trying to get on with Green Bay, shortly after he got released. A quick Ebay search turned up no less than 3 copies for sale right now including a BIN for a BGS 9 version for 20 dollars. There's one with an extremely blurry picture right now that's going for .99 cents with 4 days left. That makes sense right now. There's not many Browns collectors that want this card and surely not many set collectors that have not already put this one together. Even with my patience I had to vastly overpay for some players that never made it like Cade McNown. These cards are still offered for sale at times but it's very sporadic. High end sets like these where the cards are priced at a fraction of what they used to be are not worth it for collectors to sell any more. The only good news is that like all old cards, the prices have bottomed out and there's nowhere for prices to go but up. It might take 20-30 years for that to happen but eventually I think people might see how undervalued this set is. All rookies are hard signed and there are a few possible HOF cards in it like the Champ Bailey AU RC and possibly the Donovan McNabb AU RC.
Saturday, August 23, 2014
Anytime I can get a Broncos QB for my collection it's a good day. Based on what I've seen from both this guy and the guy ahead of him (Brock Osweiler) the Broncos have extreme depth at QB. Would it hurt the Broncos chances for the playoffs if Manning went down? Certainly. However, I wouldn't count them out completely as I would with almost any other team in the league. Dysert had a great college career at Miami of Ohio and has been touted as the best prospect to come out of that school since Ben Roethlisberger. Looking at his stats I have a hard time believing he lasted until the seventh round but we as fans don't know the whole story; his interviews, combine workouts (if he even went) and other factors may have lead to his slide. This is my second Dysert card from the Topps Chrome master set; I got his blue wave refractor as part of a lot on Ebay earlier this year.
Collecting one team exclusively can have its benefits. I collected Broncos cards almost exclusively a few years ago but set collecting appeals to me more because you have a wider base of breakout stars and cool cards that you'll come across. With all the variations, 1/1's and printing plates it's impossible to even collect every card of the team that you like every year. Some people choose to break boxes and then use every other team as trade bait, other people like to buy the singles they need off of Ebay or CheckoutMyCards.com.
Friday, August 22, 2014
I'm adding this base card today for my 2013 Topps Chrome set. I pulled a Blue Wave refractor out of my box I broke but no base rookie. Mathieu had a great 2011 season in college and after sitting out 2012 with an injury made a huge impact once he reached the NFL. His card values aren't anywhere near what offensive rookies are getting but he does have a strong following. According to ESPN.com:
Mathieu showed in 2013 what he could do after a year away from football. He was a finalist for Defensive Rookie of the Year. The Honey Badger persona followed him to the NFL and he embraced it on the field.
He was versatile in his rookie season, playing free safety and cornerback in addition to special teams in 13 games before his injury. He was the Cards’ fifth-leading tackler (with 63), and if he had finished the season, Mathieu could have been in the top three. He added two interceptions and a sack to his rookie stat line.
Thursday, August 21, 2014
My 2013 Topps Chrome base set is here! Every day I'll add a card that is missing from my set (something like 66 percent). Today's is #2A Larry Fitzgerald. Because of the "A" designation in Beckett, he's got a rare base variation with a different photo. This type of insert might be easy to miss to the common collector. Only an Ebay search would show you what the base card looks like normally in comparison with the SP. The short print versions are usually going for 20-30 times what the base card would go for. I like the fact that these are sprinkled throughout the set and there are rookies and veterans to chase.
SP shown here
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
The purchase of this card illustrates my buying habits to a "T". Many people buy when players are hot. This is a great strategy IF and only if that player gets hotter. There are very few times when this is true. Players like Adrian Peterson were always hot from the beginning and in his instance, prices only went up. Even for AP though, there have been roller coaster moments. His ACL injury cooled his values off slightly although I never bought any during that time. That was really the time to buy because people weren't sure how he's respond. Many running backs are not the same when they have that type of injury. AP responded with a phenomenal 2,000 + yard season.
David Wilson retired a couple of weeks ago and the market is now flooded with these cards, many at dirt cheap prices. Some sellers are selling high in hopes of duping collectors that had not heard the news which is both amusing and a common occurrence in this type of situation. I'm doing 2 sets from 2012 and oddly enough Wilson was not included in the 2012 Spx set. He was part of the 2012 Panini Black Rookie Auto Patch set so I went ahead and got this one. A month ago this was a 20-25 dollar card. Now it's a 5 dollar card. I'd say the only reason the value is that high is just the cost of the packs which if you recall on the 2012 Panini black were somewhere around 200 dollars. You would get one of these patch autographs with some strange numbering (versions to 349, 99, 49 and 25) but the base set was always numbered to 349. The other versions are difficult to pick out because the only difference is the numbering on the back and a slightly different sheen to the word "Rookie" the player name and "Black". This is why if the seller doesn't list the number in their auction I won't buy it for fear of getting a non-base version and then having to keep the card or sell it back.
This is a case where they should have just made the numbering higher on these. There's nothing wrong with having a rookie card numbered to 999 or even 1999 like for the 1999 spx cards. If the card is good it won't lose its value and if everyone else is like me we're kind of tired of the endless parallels to every card. Fake scarcity doesn't make a card more valuable. It's to the point where a card numbered to even 25 copies doesn't generate much interest. In the late 1990's whenever you pulled a card numbered that low you'd about fall out of your chair no matter who it was. It's just not that way any more.
Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Today's card is a RC card of Craig Erickson. He played for 7 years and has his best year as a pro in 1993 where he passed for over 3,000 yards and 18 TDs. He was a highly rated draft pick but seems like he had an average career. Winning the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm award in college he joined the ranks of some successful QBs like Matt Ryan and Andrew Luck. This award, like any college accolade is not indicitive of pro football success by any means, just like Heisman winners sometimes go on to be great pros but many of them do not.
This is the 11th Pacific card I've added to my collection. I should be getting in my 2013 Topps Chrome set very soon so we'll be taking a look at those cards for a while once that happens.
The regular Topps set has come up on Ebay and they look pretty damn good. For some reason we'll have to wait till somewhere around Thanksgiving for the Topps Chrome release to come out though. I think that will be the next set that I'll be purchasing. Should be damn good with a really strong rookie class and a great design. That and the fact that this might be Topps' last foray into the football card market for quite some time. We as collectors should be pretty upset about that. I know I am. First UD and now this? Panini cards suck.
Monday, August 18, 2014
Here's a 1991 Pacific card from a break I did earlier this year. This card is 1991 Pacific # 476 Derrick Fenner. These cards were produced in the dead zone of the early nineties. Massively overproduced I got an unopened box of over 300 cards for 9.99 at the local sports card shop at the bargain bin table. This card is the tenth one I've added to my collection of the 300.
Being a set collector I have a pretty cool set coming in from 2013. I broke a box of 2013 Topps Chrome and fell in love so I have the base set coming in. This will join my 2008 Topps Chrome complete set. I'm thinking with the amount of completed sets on Ebay, this might be a fun project. If 2014 Topps Chrome comes out before I'm done adding these cards then I'll get that. If not, I'll grab the 2012 set with the likes of Russell Wilson and Andrew Luck. Either way I'll be getting a top flight set.
Sunday, August 10, 2014
After this beauty has been added I'm down to 199 more. It's difficult for me to have the patience to slowly grind away at this set but it's definitely fun. I got this one for the lowest price yet, .76 cents including shipping! Usually these are averaging a couple of dollars a piece.
To combat my boredom I've decided to work on three sets simultaneously. The other two were sets I started in 2012 and lost my way on them. The first one is the 2012 Spx football set. I'm a little under halfway done on this. The monster of the set seems to be the Andrew Luck /99 (and autographed) which is fetching anywhere from 300 to 600 dollars on Ebay. I can't even imagine what a card shop, especially in Indianapolis would want for it. This is a good development because if I went through the trouble of finishing a 2012 set I would want both the Robert Griffin and the Luck, not just Griffin. The Andrew Luck appears to just be coming back from the mystery redemption cards that were popping up in these packs when they first came out. Everyone speculated what these would be and it appears we now have the answer.
The other set I'm working on is also from 2012. Panini Black was another product that I really liked the looks of. The 35 card set is pretty much what we all like out of a product. Autographs, jersey pieces and a stunning design. These mostly black cards were signed with a gold pen and look pretty damn awesome. I've got 6 of the 35 so far including the Nick Foles and the Ryan Tannehill which are both picking up steam. I'll try to get one of the cheaper ones for this run. The Russell Wilson out of this set looks really awesome but it may be a while before I can get my hands on that one. I'll probably be getting something like an Isaiah Pead, Michael Egnew or a David Wilson, all of which are dirt cheap these days.
Sunday, August 3, 2014
This exact photo was pulled from Ebay but you get the idea. My copy is numbered 21/25 and is the gold spotlight version. We did a case break a few months ago over at Mike's Stadium Sports Cards and this was one of the first cards pulled. I was pretty excited because this card alone made the 30 dollar price of admission well worth the break. I was lucky enough to get the 49ers which is a GREAT team for breaking any year because of Montana, Rice and the other possible HOF players. 2013 was a big year for 49ers rookies too as Lattimore, Quinton Patton and Vance McDonald were all rookies in this product. (Spoiler alert, I pulled all three of these RC autos). In box breaks for 2013 you want to get the Jets (Geno Smith), the Broncos (Montee Ball, Peyton Manning) and the 49ers are not bad either. Weak teams this year would be the Ravens (one or two low level draft picks, not many autos at all), the Raiders and the Lions. Browns would be pretty terrible for 2013 product but we know all case breakers will be wanting the Browns in 2014. The Broncos on the other hand will be a pretty weak team to have as they went WR CB for many of the top picks this year. The Raiders will be pretty strong as well with Kahlil Mack and Derek Carr should have plenty of collectors too.