When I saw that the 2005 Aaron Rodgers SP Authentic 1/1 NFL logo Auto had been listed on eBay, I thought a number of things about the auction, some good, a lot bad. Most of the bad thoughts center on the fact that Beckett got a hold of one of the best SP Authentic cards ever to hit eBay, graded it gem mint DURING the auction, and summarily exacerbated one of the biggest conflicts of interest that I have talked about with grading cards.
First off, this Rodgers 1/1 NFL Logo is a ridiculous card. It could not have been put up for sale at a better time, and I think that Beckett knew they had a gem in their hands when it came to publicizing their auction consignment services. Oddly enough, what they didnt realize, is that there are a number of people like myself who have seen this card before, and we know that it was not worthy of the grade they gave it. BGS has proven themselves to be the punch line of a joke lately, mainly stemming from the fact that the bigger the publicity of the card, the looser the standards for their grade. Remember the Strasburg superfractor grading debacle? Yeah, this is a similar situation. Not only because many people saw that before it was slabbed, its corners were well below the 9 grade that was given, but also because it was specifically slabbed to be auctioned off. That presents an incredible conflict of interest, partially due to the way Beckett will make money and publicity on the sale.
Grading in general is a complete scam, as we have found out over the last few years, and yet, so many collectors still put stock in the completely arbitrary process. Yes, you can state that BGS’s standards are above PSA or any of the other companies, but that’s like saying Al Capone was a higher class criminal because he gave money to the families of the people he killed. He was still a criminal, and that is the bottom line, much like grading is still a money driving business for the companies that run it, not a service.
Remember, this “service” has no regulatory body, no review standards other than internal sources, and its end users NEVER question the results of its practices. Wait, I take that back. If the grade is low, the people just crack out the cards from the case, and keep resubmitting until they get the grade they want. Basically, if a card comes back a 10, it stays a 10 forever, because the person who owns it would never want to risk losing the extra money a 10 gives their card. In reality, the grade is only as true as the eye that examines the card, and in most cases, the human eye is subjective. Because the difference between a 9.5 and a 10 is so tiny, its easy to see why people are able to crack and resubmit with frequent success.
In this case, Beckett has used their grading “service” to earn them more money and more publicity on one of the biggest auctions of the entire NFL year. Personally, I am not surprised after seeing the complete EPIC FAIL that happened back when the Stras Super came into their possession, as this only goes to show how low they are willing to stoop for some PR. The card was graded for the auction YESTERDAY, which adds to the problem of why this is such a grift on Beckett’s part. Start the auction without the card graded, end it with a gem mint 9.5 and 10 auto despite the fact that many Rodgers SPA Patch auto cards never attain that standard.