Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott and his representatives claimed late Friday they have no idea how 277 trading cards were allegedly signed by an autopen machine and returned to Panini America.
A statement on Panini’s corporate blog was posted around 10 PM Central time. It was the first time the company had addressed an issue that became a national news story.
Panini said its executives met with Prescott Thursday to “investigate in detail” why cards that were supposed to be autographed by Prescott carry what is believed to be a machine-generated signature instead.
“Prescott and his representatives have worked closely with Panini during this process since becoming aware of the discrepancies and have no knowledge of how those cards were returned to Panini,” the post attributed to spokesman Tracy Hackler stated.
Issues with Prescott’s 2016 Panini Prizm autographs surfaced late last week when collectors who had submitted redemption cards began receiving the “signed” cards and compared that autographs and a number ‘4’ inscribed above Prescott’s name.
Panini, the NFL’s exclusive trading card partner, admitted Friday that the cards “may not be authentic” and stated it had ordered a recall, stopping delivery to 110 customers. A total of 167 other Prescott cards carrying what appear to be autopen signatures couldn’t be stopped and were delivered to customers, according to the company. Panini says it is “in the process of contacting the remaining customers affected.”
Panini also stated that some of Prescott’s Prizm cards are still unaccounted for.
There was no statement issued by Prescott or his representatives in Panini’s post.
However, Panini also indicated it had reached a long-term extension on Prescott’s exclusive autographed trading card agreement during its Thursday meeting with the quarterback. Part of that new deal will involve Prescott replacing the bogus Prizm signatures with hand-signed cards, all of which will carry a “special Dak Prescott hologram.”
Panini says those who are offered cards that don’t have the hologram should contact them.
Panini says Prescott has already signed “thousands” of cards since he was drafted out of Mississippi State a year ago and has participated in “multiple authenticated signing sessions” since then.