It’s been in major department stores for at least a couple of weeks, but hobby boxes of 2014 Panini Contenders Football arrived at shops Thursday, promising five autographs per box, at least two of which will be on card. Below our preview is a live look at the most watched Contenders listings on eBay.
Last year’s boxes are selling for around $100 online now but with the stronger rookie class in 2014, Contenders should have the potential to be an in-demand product. Panini has autographs signed up from 40 of this year’s draft picks.
The long running and ever-popular Rookie Tickets autographs set returns with tiered parallels that include Playoff Tickets numbered to 199, Championship Tickets numbered to 99 or less, Cracked Ice Tickets numbered to 22 and Super Bowl Tickets and Printing Plates both 1/1. The Super Bowl and Championship tickets carry a rainbow-style design this year. Panini showed off three different versions of Teddy Bridgewater’s standard Rookie Ticket auto.
There will be some Rookie Ticket Variations in the mix.
Forty players signed on-card RPS Rookie Ticket Autographs. All appear on both a base version and a Variation 1 version. In addition, 20 of those players also appear on a Variation 2 version (see images at left).
Some Variation 1 cards will be limited to as few as 50 copies. All Variation 2 cards are limited to 30 or fewer cards. All 40 players also appear in the Playoff Tickets, Championship Tickets, Cracked Ice and Super Bowl Tickets parallels.
Here’s what Panini says about the whole thing:
The non-RPS Rookie Tickets Variations are easy to identify once you know what to look for. The front of every base 2014 Contenders non-RPS Rookie Ticket includes a vertical section, row and seat designation in silver foil that corresponds to each player’s height, weight and jersey number. The tell-tale sign to spot the non-RPS variations? When the jersey number, or “seat” designation is on the bottom. It’s worth noting that not all non-RPS players have variations.
Gold Parallels will be numbered to 99 while Holo Golds will be 1/1.
Dual signed cards in the Alma Mater and Round Number subsets are numbered to 25.
If you are looking for veteran autographs, they are rare but do exist. MVP Contender Autographs which are numbered to 25 and Legendary Contender Autographs which are numbered to 10 are signed by players on a checklist that includes Tom Brady, Colin Kaepernick and some retired greats like Joe Montana.
Inserts in each hobby box will include two Rookie of the Year Contenders, two Draft Class, two Round Numbers, one MVP Contenders, one Legacy Contenders, two Touchdown Tandems and two more inserts or parallels.
Again, the base set is just 100 cards and if you can do without the bells and whistles, you can usually buy those for under $15. Amazingly, suspended Vikings running back Adrian Peterson remains in the set.
Below is a look at the ‘most watched’ Contenders cards on eBay.