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 TBO.com on both subjects, transferring his work for the Tampa Tribune to the realm of cyberspace.
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Collect call: Panini Prime Signatures Football
Posted May 8, 2012 by Bob D'Angelo
Updated May 8, 2012 at 07:45 PM
It always a gamble when you spend $50 or higher for a pack of cards. Even if the card company promises an autograph per pack, it’s always a roll of the dice when you open the box.
That’s what will happen if you purchase Panini America’s Prime Signatures football set. There are only four cards to a pack, and one pack to a box. Price will range from $50 to $60, depending on how or where you buy the cards. What’s nice about these cards is that they are thick — 72 point. And, there is one guaranteed autograph per box.
The card design has a cutout of the player feathered against a background that is tan and then turns into a whiter shade near the card edges. The photos in this post really don’t do the cards justice; guess it was a shadowy day when I took the pictures.
The autograph was of Hall of Famer Ron Mix, a parallel of base card No. 149 numbered to 35. The autograph is on a sticker, but Mix’s signature is bold and very legible.
There were two base cards in the pack, both numbered to 499. One card depicted Bucs receiver Arrelious Benn. The final card in the pack was a Prime Proof parallel of Brandon Spikes, numbered to 99.
A checklist accompanied the box. It shows there are 175 base cards, and cards 176 to 261 are rookies.
Collectors can pull Call to the Hall autographs, a subset dotted with names like John Elway, Joe Namath, Earl Campbell and Joe Montana. Signing Bonus Signature cards concentrate on the game’s up-and-coming players, like Percy Harvin, Bucs quarterback Josh Freeman, Tim Tebow and Rashard Mendenhall.
So there are some good autographs to be found. Is it worth the risk? That depends on your wallet.