The NFLPA and its marketing and licensing business unit NFL Players Inc., have announced the NFLPA Rookie Premiere Class of 2023. It’s the group of players who are asked to sign football cards that will be used throughout the upcoming trading card release calendar. Their cards will be the most prevalent among newcomers inside releases during the first half of the upcoming season.
Forty-five rookies from the 2023 NFL Draft will gather in Los Angeles this Thursday through Sunday for the 29th edition of the Rookie Premiere, which is produced by Panini America.
They’ll participate in a live action and studio shoot on Saturday that will result in many of the images collectors will see on the players’ rookie cards, spread across more than 30 brands over the next 12 months. During the course of the event, each player will sign several thousand cards for a variety of Panini brands.
Fanatics will also unveil the official jersey for each rookie and players will also spend time learning about the business aspects of football and get assistance with launching their endorsement careers.
The NFLPA says players are selected for the Rookie Premiere “based on factors such as college performance, draft status, position, and marketability, all of which affect trading card value.”
The list of invitees is heavy on skill position players. While high first round picks like Bryce Young, CJ Stroud and Bijan Robinson will be there, several quarterbacks picked in the fourth and fifth rounds of the draft will appear over other first round picks at tight end, offensive line and on defense. Among them: Stetson Bennett, Sean Clifford, Jaren Hall, Dorian Thompson-Robinson, Clayton Tune and Aiden O’Connell.
Of the 45 players who will sign during the Premiere, only three play defense: Jalen Carter (Eagles), Will Anderson Jr. (Texans) and Tyree Wilson (Raiders).
The full list of players invited to the Rookie Premiere is here.