Unlike many of the recent sets we have seen from Panini, Certified has been around forever. Frankly, I am surprised, as it has literally been one of the most poorly designed products in card history. Year after year of horrid themes and looks to the cards, and that’s putting it lightly. Last year, with a down class, I believe that we had a better looking set, which included a pretty progressive design to the box hits.
Check out the checkered past of this product – you will see why I feel the way I do:
2006 Leaf Certified Materials Deangelo Williams Triple Relic Auto – this year is one of the worst card designs in modern history
2008 Leaf Certified Materials Chris Johnson Triple Relic Auto – Another awful year
2010 Leaf Certified Materials Eric Decker Triple Relic Auto – would have been fine if not for the goofy pictures
2011 Certified Randall Cobb Triple Relic Auto – I think this is the best year of the run
This year, from what we have seen, the cards are about as boring as it gets. The freshman fabric cards, which have always been the staple of this product are basically diet versions of Spectra, which was both Chrome stock and on card. This is neither. Instead we get the signature rainbow foil and sticker autos, which everyone should be very familiar with. I swear to god, whomever the company is that makes this ugly ass stock is going to be fucking rich come 2016. Panini uses it like it is the key to happiness. Its ugly as shit.
On top of the spectra clone design work for the main box hits, the fabric of the game cards are triggering PTSD flashbacks to the train wreck we all experienced with 2013 Limited. The compartmentalized design with the tiny player picture stuffed into to the top right is a complete nightmare, and that doesnt even begin to describe how terrible it is that a fabled set like this has degraded to this point.
Im running out of adjectives for ugly as I move into the new generation cards, where the logo for the set is almost bigger than the picture of the player. I have no idea why this continues to be the case with Panini, but they cant seem to prevent themselves from tripping over their own stupidity. Considering they will also be coming out with one of the most needless sets of the year in TOTALLY Certified as well, these cards only get worse as the year goes on. Totally Certifed deserves its own paragraph of ridicule, but ill save that for when they eventually solicit it.
Overall, this type of crap is going to be bought up because collectors have grown up with this set. It hasnt deserved to win that type of brand loyalty, as I can only count a few times where I have actually wanted to buy singles from this product. Not a good showing, and gear up as we approach the time where there will be no other options at bay.
Here is the damage: