It was a landmark year for football; one fans still talk about. The 1972 Miami Dolphins just wouldn’t lose. Through a 14-game regular season, a conference semi-final, final and Super Bowl VII, Don Shula’s team was perfect. America was captivated and Topps football cards sold well enough that the company planned a third series for the first time ever.
When the 1972 Topps Football boxes hit store shelves, it had something a little different. For the first time, Topps included leader and ‘in action’ cards in a football issue. That meant multiple cards for some familiar names. The first 263 cards had two separate runs of ‘Pro Action’ cards plus the first eight cards that featured the statistical leaders from the 1971 season, something Topps had been featuring on its baseball cards for more than a decade.
The first two series were issued via traditional wax, cello and rack packs as well as the vending boxes that were part of dealer cases. The third series came out very late in the season, didn’t sell that well and was only available via wax packs and rack packs. Today, the packs and the cards themselves carry a significant premium.
The ’72 Topps football set features rookie cards of Roger Staubach, John Riggins, Ted Hendricks and Charlie Joiner along with a multitude of Hall of Famers. Topps didn’t have a license to use the logos so you’ll see a lot of helmet-less posed shots and airbrushed action photos in the set.
As with many older Topps issues, centering can often be an issue.
This week, we kick off a weekly feature here on Sports Collectors Daily as the crew from Just Collect, one of eBay’s largest sellers of vintage cards, will open an old sports card pack on video. This week, the 1972 Topps football first series pack leads it off. We hope you enjoy the vintage pack break each and every week. Depending on grade, a 1972 Topps football pack usually sells for between $90 and $200.