Tuesday, September 19, 2017

My First Football Set of 2017

I haven't been too active collecting football this year, mostly because of tight financial circumstances and partly because I've not had too many current sets calling out to me.  I have decided to put together the Prestige set again this year, so almost everything I have from 2017 is Prestige.  I used some Target gift cards to pick up 8 fat packs for a total out-of-pocket cost of $15.  No, I haven't completed the set yet--I'm still about 50% complete--but here are a few of the highlights of my pulls so far.  The configuration for each pack is 30 cards, with 4 inserts, 4 rookies, 2 Xtra Points parallels, and 22 veteran base cards.  I'll the 4 best veterans and the rookies and inserts from each pack.

Pack 1

The base design is simple and clean.  I like the borderless photo and the unobtrusive banner on the bottom.  I don't love the color scheme of the team color and white for each card; I'd like to see primary and secondary team colors on the banner.  For the rookies, I think Panini played to its biggest strength, ie. licenses for both NFL and NCAA.  I like the full college picture with the drafting team's logo.  The Xtra Points parallels are xtra shiny, and mine are red because they are Target exclusive.  WalMart has its own blue parallels.

I like the look of the Alma Maters insert, but the checklist wasn't too enticing for me.  Good players, to be sure, but overall I didn't care to collect the set.  I also like Banner Season insert, but I ultimately chose to chase the Phenomenal Athletes set.  It was an economical decision, really, as I ended up with one in every pack and therefore am closer to finishing it than the Banner Season.

Pack 2

I only intended to show 4 base cards per pack, but this was quite the pack for veteran base stars.  For me, personally, this was a great pack in general.  Two Packer base cards, new addition Martellus Bennett as a parallel, and an insert of Green Bay draft pick Malachi Dupre (since cut).  Throw in three of the hottest rookie cards available in Fournette, Cook, and Kizer, a Phenomenal Athlete to go to my set build, and a Banner Season of Kellen Winslow that will go in my All 1980s collection, and I love this pack. 

Pack 3

My best base cards in this pack were some good pass catchers, although three of them are often injured.  Tyreek Hill is one of the most exciting players in the game, and this is my first card of him since the sets I collected last year didn't include his rookie.  I can see Hill and Peppers being solid players.  The highlight in this pack is two Heisman winners for my parallels, both from Auburn.  What are the odds?  Both of these cards fit nicely with my Heisman collection.  From the inserts, I pulled another Phenomenal Athletes card.  The NFL Passport inserts make their yearly appearance, and DeShaun Watson is about the best player I could hope to pull.  However, the design doesn't do much for me.  The font is way too small and there is too much dead space.  I'm not a fan.  I'm also not a fan of the Hardwear set.  It's in Prestige every year as well, and I don't understand it.  The checklist is never great (seriously, why is Jeremy Langford representing the Bears after losing his job to Jordan Howard last year), it's always horizontal, and why produce a card called Hardwear without any memorabilia?  I know there is a helmet relic version of this set, but without the helmet, it doesn't make sense.

Pack 4

Interesting veteran base cards here.  The counterparts of the infamous Manning-Rivers 2004 draft trade appear side-by-side.  Now that their careers are starting to wind down, it's hard to say there was a definite winner.  Both quarterbacks have been solid in their careers.  Both have been turnover machines at times.  I think that Rivers is the better of the two, but Eli has two Super Bowl Rings.  Could the Giants have won those two Super Bowls with Rivers?  I don't know, but I'm sure they don't regret making the trade.  I kind of doubt that the Chargers regret it, either.  Then we have the Packers' two new tight ends in Martellus Bennett and Lance Kendricks.  It's interesting to me that Panini chose to Photoshop the Bennett card, but the not the Kendricks.  The rookies and Xtra Points are ho-hum, but I like the inserts.  Another Banner Season card that fits into a mini-collection, a Fournette insert that I will hang onto, a Connections insert featuring a Heisman player for my collection, and one card closer to completing the Phenomenal Athletes set.

I'll wrap up this post for now.  You'll get to see the rest of my Target Gift Card Prestige Haul later.  Thanks for reading!



  1. I like that Randolph. I didn't know he was in prestige. Like you, I haven't really touched any new football because of financial reasons

  2. I wasn't a fan of last year's set but this year's design looks great

  3. Prestige and Score are really the only collectible football sets any more. Even before the exclusive (how does it feel now, Topps?) Topps stuff was becoming annoyingly unreadable and cluttered.
    I like Classics too, but not going to do them every year.

    I'll take any extra Redskins you have...