Collecting football cards is just one of the most popular hobbies in the sports industry.
Though baseball cards collecting is considered number one, football trading cards do have a favorable share in the sports collectibles industry.
On appraising football cards prices
Coming up with an accurate football sports cards pricing requires knowledge about the football card market and economy, skill in keeping up with the changes in card values, and intuition in evaluating several factors that affect prices of the football cards.
This article will show you some ways on how to get the probable price of football cards.
1. Compare football card values from different online sports cards stores
It can be difficult to determine the exact football cards prices. By comparing the market value of football cards from different online sports card shops, you will be able to get the card’s price range.
For example, a 2002 SP Authentic #104 Peyton Manning in near mint condition is sold for $3.60 in Syndicate Sports Cards while it is $2.94 in All Time Sports cards. Based on these examples, you can say that prices of the same type and condition of card can actually vary.
2. Refer to football card price guides like Beckett and Tuff Stuff
The two most reliable sports cards price guide in the collecting hobby are Beckett and Tuff Stuff.
Beckett has been in the industry since 1948. The company is an expert in publishing sports and collectibles magazines. They also offer sports cards grading services and is considered one of the trusted names in sports card authentication.
Beckett Football Magazine has been a necessary resource material for many serious sports hobbyists. It covers a wide variety of topics from tips about collecting football cards, reviews of new card sets, and most importantly, the football cards price guide. For more accessible and updated football card values and online price guides, visit the Beckett website.
Tuff Stuff is another big name that caters to the publication of sports collectible digests. Their price guide is said to be the most comprehensive and trusted football card reference found on the market. The long and detailed price listing of Tuff Stuff can be viewed online.
Tuff Stuff publishes Standard Catalog of Football cards wherein you could read about the definition, grade, and history of the football trading cards and their manufacturing company.
Vintage football cards and other valuable sports cards must be professionally appraised. There are online collectors who sell their football cards online without really knowing the real value of the cards. There could be circumstances that you underestimate the price of the collectible card.
An old woman in California almost sold a rare, antique sports card for $10-$20 on eBay. She had it pulled out from the online auction when noticing a lot of eBay users getting interested with the card. When she had the card professionally appraised, it turned out that the sports card value was $64,073.
Factors that influence football cards values
Here are some factors that influence football card prices. This list will be helpful in determining football card values yourself.
1. Subject of the football trading card
The subject or the player is probably the first crucial thing to consider in a football card value. The player featured usually sets the demand for a sports card. Football Hall of Famers and players significant to football history generally correspond to an expensive football card price.
In the 1948 Bowman football card set, #22 Sammy Baugh was valued $2,495 while the #98 Fred Enke was priced at $19. Sammy Baugh was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Enke, on the other hand, was not as famous.
2. Condition of the sports card
A football trading card with many signs of deterioration like tear, scratches on the surface, blemishes, and stains is usually cheap. Grading is the process that will evaluate the quality or condition of the football card using a standard (usually a scale of 1-10 with 10 as the highest). A 1933 Goudey Sport Kings #6 Jim Thorpe with a grade of 3 was sold for $659. The same card with a grade of 5 was priced at $1,002.
3. Age of the football trading cards
The most expensive football card is a vintage sports card issued in 1935. Antique football cards can be more valuable than new cards because the older cards feature many firsts in the football history – first Hall of Famers, first championship games, etc.
More so, new football card sets are often mass produced and are easily bought and sold in the market. A 1948 Leaf #18 Harry Gilmer card graded 5 is worth $29 while a 2000 Upper Deck Correll Buckhalter card with a grade of 9.5 is priced $25. Notice how the 2000 card being cheaper despite of its almost perfect condition.
4. Rarity of the collectible football card
Rarity of a football card is closely related with the age factor. Rare football cards can be valuable because they are hard to find. Antique football trading cards can be scarce because many of them may have been destroyed or lost as time goes by. Serious sports cards collectors would readily spend big amounts just to own scarce football cards.
The most valuable football card
The most valuable football card in the sports card collecting hobby is the 1935 National Chicle #34 Bronko Nagurski. In an auction in 2008, an example of this card with a grade 8 was sold for $66,354.
Nagurski is a legend in the football history. He was one of the original members of the National Football League Hall of Fame in 1963. In his football career, he was considered as unstoppable, even referred to as always “charging like bull”. Bronko Nagurski ranked number 35 in the Sporting News 1999 list of the 100 Greatest Football Players.