2013 Topps Triple Threads Football arrived just before Christmas with its usual place in the mid-to-high end range of products. Topps makes heavy use of relics and low numbered parallels. The product managers who handle Triple Threads understand enough about collectors they have even used the term "White Whale" in some of their nomenclature. White Whale is what many collectors term to be their most elusive or sought after card.
We have written plenty about the weakness of the 2013 football rookie class so there is not much more to add to this. Many rookies had nice years but without a breakout quarterback, the class has yet to really develop a tail wind. And with the few teams left in the NFL tournament, the odds of a breakout rookie is minimal. Now, the good news to begin 2014 is Johnny "Football" Manziel has declared for the draft and at least here in Texas he will be the primary reason to buy the early releases. It will also be good for him to be paid to sign autographs for these sets without having to worry about NCAA restrictions.
The Triple Threads base cards have the player's photo set against a "brownish" type background with the player's name and position at the bottom. The backs have biographical information, a brief informational blurb and seasonal and career statistics.
The design has generally been well received by collectors. However, Triple Threads could have used an injection of Hall of Famers or well known retired stars to jump start interest in the product. This release has not been a hit at my local store (Triple Cards, Plano TX) as he reported he hold sold exactly one mini-box at $109 and no "master-boxes" at $200. Meanwhile leading on-line retailers are selling these "master-boxes' in the $160-170 range. The "master-boxes" contain two mini boxes which each have seven cards of which three
So how did we do from our master box?
Base cards: 6 of 100. You need at least 17 boxes to complete a set with perfect distribution but set builders aren’t the target of this product
Purple Parallel (#d to 320): Adrian Peterson, Steve Ridley
Emerald Parallel (#d to 170): Sam Bradford
Gold Parallel (#d to 99): Tony Romo
Relics Purple (#d to 27); Johnathan Franklin
Ruby Parallel Auto (#d to 15): Landry Jones #120
While Landry Jones will always have some interest in this part of the country because of his long stint starting for Oklahoma as quarterback and may get his chance down the road, as you can see we did not have any huge hits out of our master box.
You can see what's been listed on eBay here. At the current on-line levels where the cost per card is a little more than $10 each then this becomes a release to which many collectors may feel they have a puncher's chance at receiving a good card. Meanwhile, we'll keep looking for our white whales.
Rich Klein can be reached at [email protected]