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Bob D’Angelo

Bob is a longtime member of the Florida sports media, having served as a reporter and copy editor for more than 30 years. His true sports passion, however, is the history of the various games, exhibited by his in-depth book reviews and hobby of collecting cards and other sports memorabilia. He blogs for on both subjects, transferring his work for the Tampa Tribune to the realm of cyberspace.

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Collect call: 2012 Panini Limited football

Posted Jan 27, 2013 by Bob D'Angelo

Updated Mar 27, 2013 at 09:27 PM

At approximately $100 per hobby box, Panini America’s 2012 Limited Football offers one pack with seven cards. The good news is that Panini promises at least three autograph or memorabilia cards in this high-end product, with at least one autograph per box.

The bad news, in the box that I opened, is that one of those hot cards was a redemption card. That means a waiting period, and if you are like me, a delay of several weeks or even months can be aggravating.

Nevertheless, that’s something that collectors grudgingly have to accept.

Here are the particulars: the set has 100 base cards, 50 Legends, 50 Phenoms and 35 Material Phenom rookie cards. The base. Legends and Phenom cards have three parallels: Silver Spotlight, numbered to 49, Gold Spotlight (25) and Platinum Spotlight, which is a 1/1. The Material Phenoms have just gold (25) and platinum (1/1) parallels.

The box I opened contained a Silver Spotlight card of Rams quarterback Sam Bradford.

The most intriguing card in the pack I opened was a Stadium Stars insert of former Giants quarterback Phil Simms, numbered to 99. This piece of game-used memorabilia was not a swatch, but a piece of a helmet that Simms purportedly wore during his career. A very interesting card, to say the least.

The autograph card featured Patriots defensive end Chandler Jones, who had six sacks this season.

The redemption card was for a Materials Phenom rookie card of Cardinals wide receiver Michael Floyd.

I was really hoping to pull a Game Day Materials card. It has that classic look of the program that one can buy at a stadium on game day, along with a game-used swatch. It looked very sharp; I will have to keep looking.

Other types that are available to collectors are Inked, which has a blotchy, out-of-the-inkwell black-and-white feel about it. This insert will be autographs only and will feature past and current stars. It has a very interesting look.

The other insert to look for is Hog Heaven, which will feature football swatches signed in silver and are numbered to 10.

The base cards in the pack I sampled included Bucs running back and kickoff return man Michael Smith, who only saw action in Tampa Bay’s season opener against Carolina; 49ers running back Frank Gore, who is Super Bowl-bound; and Cowboys running back DiMarco Murray.

There are plenty of opportunities to pull a nice card from this set. Obviously, seven cards in Limited limits a collector’s choices, but the possibilities remain. It’s up to you as a collector as to whether to gamble on them.

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