Vintage Football Cards: American football is by far the most popular sport in the country, and the NFL is also the most valuable professional sports league in the country. Given all of this, it’s not surprising that interest to buy football trading cards has remained high. There are football cards that span the whole history of the American Professional Football Association, from its inception to the present day.
Quality vintage football rookie cards, like their baseball counterparts, have seen major price hikes in recent years. Here’s a selection of pre-1975 football cards that are now reasonably priced and may be ideal candidates for future growth if you acquire finer examples.
1951 Bowman Tom Landry
There haven’t been many fantastic rookie cards for professional coaches, but this is one of them. His greatest football achievements occurred later in life, and many casual collectors and new investors are unaware that this NFL legend had a rookie card in one of the first bubble gum card sets. As the interest to buy vintage football cards rises among newcomers, demand for the rookie card of “Thomas” Landry will undoubtedly climb, and rather astonishingly.
1958 Topps Johnny Unitas
Prices for Johnny U’s 1957 rookie cards have skyrocketed, while the ’58s are boiling but not yet exploding. The 1958 set is quite fragile, and the Unitas card is prone to centering problems. Having a high-quality replica of his second card is a smart move. Remember, this was also the year he appeared in the NFL’s ‘Greatest Game,’ which adds to the attraction. In comparison to his rookie card, the price of a nice one appears to be relatively low.
1958 Topps Bart Star
This, like Unitas, is a second-year card that is greatly undervalued. Even with a small population of high-grade copies, costs are still affordable. Bart has five championship rings as the winningest quarterback of the 1960s. Remember that when rookie card prices become too high, the herd usually migrates to the second year, and stars aren’t that expensive right now.
1959 Topps Jerry Kramer
Despite the fact that he is not a Hall of Famer, the long-time Lombardi-era guard has received a surge of support. He’s frequently at the top of any list of the best players who haven’t been inducted into the Hall of Fame. It’s not impossible that he’ll get there someday since there aren’t many high-grade versions of his rookie card available. Kramer is well-known for his Ice Bowl block and his highly praised books, and a slew of championship rings. A very fine one from a truly old set can still be had for $75-$85.
1959 Topps Jim Brown
Brown’s 1958 rookie card has traditionally been the gold standard for vintage football card collectors, but his 1959 card is more attractive. Take a look at him. Do you want to take it on? Many people still consider him to be the greatest running back of all time. The ’59s were plentiful, but possessing the second-oldest card of one of the NFL’s all-time greats in NM condition for under $250 isn’t likely to be something you’ll regret.
1963 Topps Johnny Unitas
It’s quite difficult to locate a centered copy of this card. When you combine corner wear from being the first card in the set with the player’s popularity, you have a formula for a highly sought-after card. It’s worth investing in a well-centered example with the highest possible grade. Plus, it’s a great shot of Johnny with his well-known crew cut. This one will be along for the ride as the demand for vintage football star cards continues to soar. A 7 is still available for about $150.
1966 Philadelphia Jim Brown
As a result of his brief career, Brown does not feature on many football cards. This is his final work and one of his greatest. Although the ’66 Philly isn’t particularly rare, it’s difficult to imagine a world in which Jim Brown cards don’t appreciate in value, especially at current prices.