Ill be completely honest in saying I have rarely even put thought into buying a box of Goodwin Champions. I am not a set collector, and the non-sport elements of the product really werent too attractive to me. However, once I started seeing some of the cool autographs that were in the product, including some with fun inscriptions, my ears perked up. Although Im not a huge fan of the design or the look of the cards, I am a sucker for unique autograph content.
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To me, if you are going to do a non-sport autograph checklist, it has to be filled with famous people that appeal to a wide range of collecting tastes. Allen and Ginter has been doing this for years, including some of the subjects that have signed for this year’s Goodwin set. No one is really going to scoff at pulling another really nice non-sport auto in a different set, so its cool to get another shot at some of the guys that would normally be prime fodder for Ginter.
Bottom line, autographs are no longer really that interesting. Its the low numbering and patch content that has become the chase element for most collectors. Even ugly autograph cards can be highly valuable, even if designs are poor. I mean, Panini continues to churn them out by the dozens. But, with inscriptions added, autograph content becomes much more desirable, and that is where Upper Deck has had success along side Topps in recent years. Panini is still very late in catching on. SP Authentic Football was so much more successful with added parallels with autograph inscriptions.
Its not going to be long before someone figures out how to do it the right way, and inscriptions arent necessarily the answer to all the problems. In fact, the logistics of getting them done are almost always limited by the players, who really dont like signing hundreds of them at a time. Im curious if there will be some other way to keep this content fresh without slapping another 1/1 on the front.