The legendary phoenix of mythology rises from the ashes of its predecessor and lives for a long, long time. While Panini America’s newest pro football product is not regenerating from a previous set, the company is hoping that the 2016 debut of Phoenix football this week is the beginning of a long, long shelf life.
A hobby box contains 12 packs, with five cards per pack. The cost of a hobby box is currently in the $120 range, depending on the retailer.
2016 Panini Phoenix Football Configuration
Panini is promising three hits per hobby box — two autograph cards, including a Rookie auto card numbered to 249 or less, and a relic card numbered to 79 or less — along with nine inserts or parallels and at least six rookies. In addition to first-year players, veterans also will be sprinkled throughout the base set.
Base Set and Parallels
The base set design has a phoenix (naturally) on the right-hand side of the card, with the player’s name running sideways down the card. An action shot of the player is set against a futuristic design that almost looks like a collection of tuning forks.
Parallels will come in red, pink, orange (numbered to 99), yellow (25), green (10) and blue (1/1) versions, along with 1/1 printing plates.
Autographs and Relics
Preview information released several weeks ago indicated Phoenix would have sticker autographs but whether that’s universal or if there might be some on-card autos isn’t known.
Rookies will be highlighted in the RPS Rookie Auto Jersey, numbered to 249 or 99. These cards also will come in versions that include patch cards numbered to 49 or 10, or in a 1/1 Prime version. There is also a Shield version. Hot Rookie Material Signature inserts will concentrate on player equipment items like Glove, Helmet, Helmet Logos and Nike Swoosh parallels.
Dual and Triple Patch Autographs will combine the top rookies on a single card and will be numbered to 20 or less.
Players who have logged some time in the NFL are not shortchanged, as Veteran Autograph Materials will included the NFL’s key stars. Retired Patches will celebrate the greats of the NFL and will have a 1/1 Super Prime parallel.
As this year’s NFL season hits the midpoint in what’s been a fairly quiet period of releases, the debut of 2016 Phoenix football should at least generate some talk in the hobby. The tone of that reaction will determine whether the brand flies again.