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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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Topps announces variations for Chrome football

Posted Nov 14, 2012 by Bob D'Angelo

Updated Mar 27, 2013 at 10:11 PM

Football card collectors putting together the recently released 2012 Topps Chrome set will need to keep their eyes open. Once again, Topps has included variations — 25 of them, and all of them rookie cards.

For example, the base card of Bucs rookie running back Doug Martin — card No. 147— shows the former Boise State star catching a pass. The variation card shows Martin running, head down, ball tucked in the crook of his left arm.

Some of the variations are subtle, and several are curious. To me, the photo cropping of some of the variations could have been done better. In at least one case, the action shot is cropped a little too tightly. For example, the Ryan Tannehill variation (card No. 109) shows the Dolphins quarterback throwing a pass — but the lower part of his right arm and the ball are cut out of the photo.

Half of the football is cut out of the left-hand side of the Brock Osweiler card (No. 210), while left hands are missing (well, not in the frame of the card) from variation cards of Brian Quick (No. 99), A.J. Jenkins (No. 156), and Robert Griffin III (No. 200).

But just because I find it curious doesn’t mean the photos aren’t good. Photographers (and the designers at Topps) are certainly entitled to some creative license.

Anyway, these short printed variations will be tough to find. They will fall one per 76 hobby packs; if you’re buying retail, the odds are much longer — one in 318 packs. While base cards in Topps Chrome will have refractor parallels, the variation cards will not.

So if you are a master set chaser, Topps (as expected) has provided another collecting wrinkle for you.

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