Friday, March 2, 2012

First Images Of 2012 Topps Football

Schedule Release Date: August 8, 2012
Box Configuration: 10 cards per pack/36 packs per box
SRP: $55/Hobby box or $92/Jumbo box

Box Break:
1 Auto or Relic card per Hobby box
2 Auto and 1 Rookie Patch card per Jumbo box

My Thoughts:
The base set is quite large at 440 cards, consisting of 263 Veterans, 110 Rookies, 28 First-Team All-Pros plus a couple of “specialty” cards (Rookie Premier Group shot, Giants Super Bowl card, League MVP and ROY cards). Add in 6 parallels – Gold (#/2012), Pink Breast Cancer Awareness (#/399), Camouflage Military (#/399), Black (#/57), Printing Plates (1/1) and Platinum (1/1) and set collectors will be having a serious meltdown trying to build a complete comprehensive set.

Inserts will be made up of
Quarterback Immortals- The best passers from the past and present
1965 Mini cards- Current stars on a heritage based card
NFL Player Sketch cards- Original art and autographs from players
Rookie Patch cards- A rookie patch card, not sure if it is a manu-patch or game used
Quarterback Rookie Reprints- A collection of some of the best QBs to play the game
Paramount Pairs- A pairing on veterans, rookies and legends that have a connection
Prolific Playmakers- Action photos of some of today’s best players

It would be nice to see Topps limit the parallels, short-prints or gimmick cards (in general, this is not an issue specific to this set) that they feel necessary to include in almost every set and then on top of that they toss in a heritage-style insert and reprints.

Topps is also working in some of the upcoming rookies like Luck, RG3, Blackmon and Richardson in to the autograph and relic sets. Currently the images used on the cards are shopped college uniforms but since these are mockups I expect that they will be replacing the images with Rookie Premier shots.

A pleasant base card design
Plenty of autograph options

Overload of parallels (Again)
Sticker autographs
More heritage and re-prints (Again)

I will give this set 3 out of 5, and that is based on a decent design and lots of autograph opportunities. The downside is this is not a set builder’s dream if they like to pick up short prints and parallels. I may look to pick up some packs and possibly even a box, you probably can not go wrong paying $55 for a Hobby box especially considering the rookie class that will be included. Everyone's attention is on the QB dilemia and the #1 and #2 picks but I think the Running Backs are going to make a splash next season.

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