Drool Gallery: A Pre-Autograph Peek at the 2011 Plates & Patches Football RCs (Part 1)

October 01, 2011

There are manifold benefits emanating from Panini America’s effort to acquire more on-card autographs for its roster of 2011 NFL products. First and foremost, obviously, is that collectors want more on-card autographs.

But one of the real hidden beauties of the process is that it requires the actual cards being signed be completed way earlier than normal — which means we get our first look at the cards way earlier than normal. And when The Knight’s Lance gets an early look, that means Panini America collectors do, too.

So I was borderline giddy yesterday when I heard that we’d received a monumental shipment from our printing facility that included as-yet-unsigned Rookie Cards slated for such late-season blockbusters as 2011 Plates & Patches, 2011 Playoff Contenders and, yes, even 2011 National Treasures.

And you’ll get your exclusive first look at all of them right here, beginning with today’s peek at Plates & Patches, which features an upscale design, a high-gloss finish, prime memorabilia pieces and rich burgundy foil that really pops. All that’s missing at this point are the autographs, but those will be added in the coming days and weeks.

We’ve included 18 of the 36 cards in the gallery below. We’ll show you the other 18 tomorrow, so be sure to devote at least a part of your Sunday to coming back here.

And by all means, let us know what you think about this year’s effort.