Next week will be a big week among football collectors as Panini releases National Treasures. With more on card content this year, as well as some crazy patch cards, this is shaping up to be a good year of the product despite the disastrous rookie class. Although it will still be very difficult to break this product and come out ahead, we are starting to see more cards show up thanks to early group breaks at the 2014 Industry summit.
On their blog yesterday, Panini released images of some of the patch cards that are going to be filling out their checklist for NT, and it should be no surprise that they are quite the sight to be seen. In past years of National Treasures, we have seen that Panini has inexplicably focused more on adding more room for patches than designing good looking cards. This year still has issues in that department, but its looking like there are not as many problems.
Companies need to realize that putting JUMBO patch swatches on vertically orientated cards doesnt work, as it forces them to squish the player into the top of the card. As a result, the area left to add embellishments and other design elements is drastically reduced, leaving the collector to flip over the card to find out which player it is depicting. For 2013, it looks like they were trying to find a happy medium, but I still think the focus is in the wrong place with these cards.
Everyone who reads this site knows how picky I am with card layouts, and a big player photo is one think that I want to see more than a big swatch. I dont find interest in swatch cards to begin with, so at least make them look nice. Because so many collectors judge the “beauty” of a card by the craziness of the swatch included, the manufacturers feel like they are designing things correctly. I cannot disagree more.
Am I going to say that I am not impressed by these cards? No, they are definitely something worth checking out. I think its really cool when Panini lays them out to show the big logos like a puzzle. But you will not find me among the collectors in line to buy one once release happens next week. Lets face it – the era of the jersey card has come to an end. Panini is still trying to resurrect it with each passing product, but even with these logos, the pictured cards wont be worth the king’s ransom they used to command. They will be valuable, but not like they would have been back in 2007.