Something to Talk About: Richard Sherman — And His Card Values — Speak Volumes

January 20, 2014

Richard Sherman Contenders BuyBack Blog

As far as Sunday nights go, Richard Sherman’s was pretty spectacular. First, the Seattle Seahawks¬†extraordinary and exuberant cornerback delivered a game-clinching, turnover-inducing tip against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship Game to secure his team’s berth in Super Bowl XLVIII. Then, he sent shock waves throughout the social media universe with a heated postgame interview for the ages.

A few hours later, Sherman had people buzzing again, this time in collecting circles, when one of his autographed Rookie Cards from Panini America’s 2013 Contenders Football release sold on eBay for a staggering $1,475.01. That’s not a misprint. One thousand. Four hundred. Seventy-five. Dollars. The appropriate response — whether you’re watching Sherman make plays or watching one of his autographed trading cards close at auction — is “Wow!”

That otherworldly, almost-$1,500 sale price is easily a record figure paid for a modern-era trading card of a defensive back, and it’s the exclamation point on a trend toward big-bucks Panini America Sherman autograph.

Although Sherman entered the NFL in 2011, he didn’t appear on an official NFL Rookie Card until Panini America included him in its 2012 Contenders Football release last winter. Earlier this season, Panini America became the first NFL-licensed trading card manufacturer to sign Sherman to an autograph trading-card agreement. In the months since, Sherman’s certified autograph cards — in 2013 Playbook Football, 2013 Totally Certified Football and 2013 Select Football¬†— have routinely sold online for between $300 and $500.

But when the company released 2013 Contenders Football earlier this month, it randomly inserted fewer than 20 autographed versions of Sherman’s 2012 Contenders Football Rookie Card. Last night, we found out just what such a card is worth.

“Richard Sherman is one of the most collectible defensive stars the football card industry has seen in quite some time — and maybe ever,” said Ben Ecklar, Panini America’s NFL Brand Director. “We were honored to produce Sherman’s first and only NFL Rookie Card last season, and signing him to an autograph deal for 2013 was one of our top priorities. Obviously, the results speak for themselves.”

Sherman will be featured on autographed cards in each of Panini America’s remaining 2013 NFL products.