Press Pass Does Something Right

I have never put any stock into anything that is released from Press Pass or SAGE. They are unlicensed products focused on players in their college uniforms that rarely hold any value once the real sets come out. This year things are going to be a little different with Upper Deck’s lack of a football license, and after seeing this, I think Press Pass is doing something I have wanted to see ever since Fleer went under.

In my Topps roundtable discussion, I talked about using redemptions for full sized items as the next logical step in the game, and here is Press Pass doing the exact thing I said was a great idea. If Panini or Topps were able to get some of the player worn jerseys at the premiere signed instead of cut up, those redemptions for the full sized items would go for much, much higher than stuff out of Press Pass.
Either way, I hope more companies latch on to this idea, maybe even paving the way for some of the coolest inscribed items ever made.

NFL Draft: Panini Finally Has A Great Idea, But Poor Execution Abounds

Panini posted these pics on their facebook page earlier today, and I must applaud them for a great way to get the rookies onto cards with the teams that just drafted them. These look to be hard signed, which will be good for their early sets, I just hate the way these cards look. I have always hated the plastic helmets, and these dont really do much for someone like me. The design and the player pics look awful as well, but Im guessing these are pretty hastily made. Great idea, poor execution as usual.

We also got a new preview of Tim Tebow’s first cards in prestige, and I think that they are a complete downgrade over last year’s design. Although they feature a team logo and will most likely be SPed to death, the design isnt as good looking as last year. For base cards, the 2009 Prestige rookies werent terrible looking, and I actually had some of them signed at the rookie premiere over the ones from UD draft or Bowman DP & P. This year’s look awful.

Putting New Blood In The Waters

After some ruminating on the current plight of the industry and the eventual boredom it will perpetuate, I started to think while tweeting earlier today. What are some ideas that I could think of that could add the razzle dazzle back into autograph or memorabilia cards? What are some ideas for products or inserts that could possibly be very cool to find if you opened a pack? Here are some brainstorms I had.

A New “Personal Touch” On Autos
What if there was a possibility of packing out redemptions for a personalized card? You redeem the card of a certain player, and for the next signing, they will personally inscribe it to you. They either go by the first name on the person’s account, or some other way will be figured out. Make these pretty rare, and you have a way to really get people’s attention. I know I would much rather see my name on a card than a player’s favorite food.
Adding More To The Auto Itself
I think it would be awesome to get a list of achievements on a card for a player with the auto. It would be cool to have a card of a certain star or HOFer that listed their career highlights or something to that effect. Stat inscriptions are immensely popular among autograph collectors, and maybe this is a way to get some of the collectors excited as well as some casual fans.
In addition, maybe see if there is a way to get the previous year’s award winners into a set. ROY, Offensive MVP, Defensive POY, Comeback player, etc all have their own subset with inscriptions of what they won. That would be AWESOME.
Awards Are Fodder For Cool
Building on the previous, it would be really cool to get as many MVPs (super bowl, season, and pro-bowl) into one set as possible. Just have them design the card as part of a product that has a lot of signatures. Get duals, quads, whatever, just build on the fact that all of them were MVPs of something.
It would be ridiculous to be able to pull a card where the Offensive MVP, the Defensive POY and the ROY all sign the same card. Without exclusives in football, that should be possible.
To make it even more interesting, have the ROYs do it as well. Have every ROY that is alive sign on to one set of cards designated for their award. You have a good number of players because it is Offensive and Defensive as well.
Sound bytes in Cards
I was shopping over the holidays with one of my good friends and his young kid, and we went into build-a-bear to look around. If you dont know what build-a-bear is, the name is self explanatory. Either way, in the store, they had these little things that you could record your own message and put it into the bear. These things were tiny enough that they could easily be modified to be put into a card. I think it would be cool to get a signed card and hear the player talk about the picture on it, or the game it is commemorating. Dont really know if that is possible, but whatever.
Player Progression
I know in one of the Panini sets, there is a player timeline set, but that is only two pictures and they never really get the effect I want to see. It would be great if we could use photoshop to get a college pic, a rookie pic, and another pic, then superimpose them all on a field background. Make it look like there is almost a age progression posted on the card. Dont separate the pics with lines, get them all on one card with seamless transition. It would be even cooler to get a player that had a black and white college pic and moved into color later in the career. To take it to another level, it would be awesome if there could be pics of the player in multiple team jerseys.
Same Team Same Card
It would be really cool to have a picture done in a set that has two players in it, and rather than having two autographs in two separated spaces, they could both sign the card with one picture. Then, if you have a card like some of the ones from Masterpieces, where a WR is being covered by a CB, you could have two players from different teams sign the card. Make it as seamless as possible, almost like having a multi-signed 8×10, because autograph collectors love this. Im kind of confused why the pics always have to be separated, especially when you could have Favre handing off to AD, and have them both sign it. What about Ed Reed and Hines Ward signing the same card with one pic?
This is all just brainstorming, and I know that putting it into practice will be a million times harder than just writing about it. I just hope that card companies are really putting more thought into revitalization rather than just churning out poop year after year. I love the shadow boxes, and I really like the film strips in Black, but those are only 2 new ideas to function on. I think we need new blood, and hopefully stuff like this is possible.

The “No Fakes” Club Grows Larger…

Every once in a while, someone comes up with a great idea that can help everyone. The guys over at have definitely put something like that together with their site dedicated to posting cards from 2008-09 Exquisite Basketball. The forums over at hobby kings has long been a hotbed of discussion regarding all things exquisite basketball, so its no surprise they put this together.

Each time a new card is posted on eBay, one of the people signed on to help will post the card on the site. This means that there will be a record of how the card FIRST appeared, with the intention of having proof against fakes in the future.

Considering that the new Exquisite Basketball has some of the most ridiculous patches you could ever set eyes on, this is a great idea. Obviously they cant get everything, but they can definitely make a difference. They have my kudos, no doubt.