Love him or hate him, Johnny Manziel is this year’s top rookie. His cards continually sell above many of the other rookies, and that wont change for now. He has even crossed over to Baseball, where Topps released an autographed card commemorating his draft status by the Padres in the 2014 Amateur Draft. His fame and his celebrity status have dictated some big numbers this year, and though I am not a fan at all, I can appreciate his importance.
His cards have come up considerably since he was named starter:
The unfortunate part is that because the Browns have played as well as they have to this point, Manziel has spent the season on the bench. This has led to speculation, deep probes into off the field situations that have come up, and a dip in his hobby value. As of yesterday, he became the starting QB for the Browns, and allowed many collectors to jump back on the bandwagon. The question is whether or not this is good news or bad news.
The good news is that we get to see what he has, all in the chase for a playoff spot in the AFC. If Manziel comes in, leads the Browns to the promised land, and plays well along the way? Huge money, a la Tim Tebow back in 2010. With the biggest releases of the year still to come, as this time of year is a very big deal for the hobby. Like I said above, love him or hate him, 2014 almost hinges on his success. Although the WR class has done very well without his services, they dont sell like QBs sell.
If Manziel can light it up (figuratively, haha), 2014 will become a pretty damn good year for cards as we close things out. It might negate the rough start many products have had as a result.
The bad news is the same as the good news in some respects, as we will get to see exactly what he has (again, a la Tim Tebow). Manziel had a lot of questions about his ability to compete at the NFL level, leading to Blake Bortles being drafted ahead of him. He is undersized, erratic, and has already displayed some issues with composure on the sidelines. One could easily argue he hasnt fared well under the scrutiny that comes with his position, and collectors have caught on.
If Manziel stinks, which is a big possibility, the 2014 high end products that he will be featured in will take a hit. Being that they are already feeling the effects of Manziel’s time on the bench, that is not a good situation.
Dont get me wrong, three games is not a big sample size, and no FINAL decisions should be made based on this timeframe. On the other hand, we know how collectors are.