Review: 2012 Panini Certified Football

2012 Panini Certified football is out and ready for release. One of the most popular early season products arrives as it is often filled with on-card signatures from the hottest rookies and some sweet memorabilia as well. With it coming out right in the middle of the football season, it’s perfect timing for football fans as well. We got our box in for review, so let’s check it out.


I really enjoyed the design of this product. It sort of reminds me of the old Flair designs with the use of foil board and the cursive lettering. The only wish with that was that the letters were a slightly different color as they really blend into the background of the card. Maybe a different background? Speaking of the background, the parallels are pretty nice looking with the color fading into the background. It sort of reminds me of 2005 Reflections baseball, one of my favorite products of all time. The jersey swatches are nice and large on the cards which is nice as well. Overall, I think it is a well designed product.


The checklist for Certified football over the years has always included the top rookies veterans, and legends of the game and this hasn’t changed. Once again, all of these are included in this product. From your top rookies like Andrew Luck to your veterans like Arian Foster and legends like…Andre Rison…the product continues to start and keep legacies alive. The product isn’t over done with rookies and contains a limited amount of parallels as well. There are a ton of rookie jersey cards, which I pulled a couple, and a nice list of veteran autos, which I pulled one of as well.


The one thing I am disappointed with is the continuation of 1 autograph and 3 jersey cards in a $100+ box. The jersey cards are more or less useless nowadays and they will continue to find themselves in the $1-$2 bins. I do like that the veteran jersey card was limited to just 99 copies, however, I still find it to be an issue. I still believe it should be 2 or 3 autographs with the rest being memorabilia. I see Panini has done that in its basketball products, why are we still lagging behind in football? Besides that, I was happy to have pulled a veteran autograph which have been seemingly difficult to pull. Not to mention it is my favorite team, can’t complain about that. But the 3 plain jerseys are just disappointing.


Overall, it is a solid product from Panini. With the improved design of the base cards and the solid checklist, it looks and feels great. The only part of the product that may not look and feel great may be when you reach into your wallet and get three plain jersey cards and possibly a scrub rookie. That wouldn’t make you feel too good about the product. At least another autograph and one less jersey would make you feel better or even 3 and 1 respectively. The product is one of Panini’s best, but it definitely needs a new set up in order to find value. The current set up isn’t beneficial for collectors who are looking for value in their purchase. For regular collectors like me, I like it as the money part is just a necessary part of collecting. But others may not be so happy, especially resellers.

Thanks again to Panini America for providing this product for review. You can find them online on their official site, blog, Facebook, and Twitter accounts.

You can find out the full checklist of this product at Cardboard Connection.

Or you can buy this product over at Dave & Adam’s Card World.

Review: 2011 Panini Certified Football

Okay, I lied in the video. Just making that clear to start. This is not the Certified product with the HRX video cards. I got too excited and ahead of myself for the possibility of an autographed video card from Panini. It’s not this one. That is Totally Certified. Oops. I’m sure I’m not the only one who made that mistake already.

Anyways, this is a break and review of 2011 Panini Certified football, the regular Certified football. The product of choice for a lot of football collectors who collect Panini products. You get 4 hits per box with some mirrored parallels as well. Want to know what we got? Me too. Check it out. More slideshow goodness.

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I give the design this score for a few reasons. There is a lot to like about the design of the cards and a lot that I couldn’t care for. Let’s start with the negatives just to get those out of the way. I think the label at the bottom of the base cards is just big. I think it would look great slimmed down a notch which would give more room for the full bleed photos which are good. FOTG and Certified Potential are meh. But I love the Hometown Heroes insert set. The design is kind of an enigma to me. Maybe it’s just me.


Okay, so you have a ton of rookies like every other Panini product this season. I’m still not a huge fan of the 100 rookies in the base set. There are a ton of no name rookie autographs as well which isn’t that good either. But you can find veterans, rookies, and legend players in this checklist which I think is a definite plus. There are some sweet veteran and legends cards that you can pull and Panini always does a great job including enough of those into a product so I always give them kudos for that.


The current price being just south of $100 might be a little much for me with this product. Sure, you get 4 hits in a box and some mirrored cards but as I stated above, there is just too much filler in terms of the base rookie autographs. You may get lucky and hit one of the Freshmen Fabrics or something along those lines and pull a nice autograph from there, but I’m not sure how often those are falling. After checking other box breaks, it appears that I just got a “meh” box compared to others. There are a ton of nice on-card autographs to be found with some nice subsets, so don’t let this particular box break scare you away. The low numbered mirror parallels always sell decent too so don’t forget about those.


While I’m not a huge fan of some of the designs this year, I am a huge fan of a some of the other designs this year. Take that for what it is and see what you like about it. The checklist is solid but again, the over abundance of rookies is something I’m not a huge fan of. But you can always find some nice veterans and legends in Panini products and they are always included in just about every set. So if you’re lucky, you’ll hit one of those. You may even pull some of the nicer rookies in autographed form as well. I seemed to have hit just a bad box as I’ve seen a lot more breaks nicer than this then on par or worse then this so don’t let this particular box scare you away. As always, do your research.

And as always, a big thank you goes out to Panini America for providing this product to review!

Video coming soon. I’ll be uploading a ton of stuff over the next couple days as I have the time off from work.

Review: 2011-12 Panini Certified Hockey

The Certified hockey is back bringing you some of the first rookie autographs of the season from your favorite rookies and stars. Couple that with some other great memorabilia cards and the popular mirror parallels, this is usually an early season hit with the hockey collectors out there trying to grab this year’s earlier cards. Let’s see what I pulled and you won’t believe it.

Oh, and while I am typing this, why don’t you test out my new slideshow plugin I installed. All you have to do is click the image or the next button to go on to the next card. Tell me if you like it or not as I’m trying to reduce clutter on my review pages.

And oh, this is definitely a hot box so it’s hard to review.

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(Not pictured: Brandon Saad Freshmen Signatures Redemption)


I really like the design of the product this year with the starburst effect. The foil board really makes it stand out and I think it’s one of Panini’s better hockey designs, so I hope this is a new trend going into hockey this year as Panini’s designs are usually easily identifiable and get kind of redundant after awhile. I like this change of pace and think they did a great job with this product’s design. The base, the inserts I did get, all looked great. It’s hard to grade design when you get mostly hits in this hot box, but these cards did look good.


While the checklist is above average because of all the rookie autographs put into the product this early in the season, it’s not great. The lack of legends you might find is kinda low. This may have to do with some exclusivity issues with other companies, but I do understand it’s hard to compete when there are exclusive autograph contracts done. I’m sure there are a few legends out there who don’t sign much you can add to a few of your products like Certified. I just find it lacks the star power in the legends arena.


This one is too hard for me to do myself with the hot box, so I relied more at a number of breaks online. With what I’ve seen, it looks like you can get some pretty decent hits in this product, but we don’t have as many hot rookies as last year. The Nuge is selling for a ton, but others aren’t so lucky in that regard. My rookies aren’t great and I didn’t pull one of the rookie jerseys, but the low numbered patches, jerseys, and parallels would do well on the secondary market. Oh, and got to love the on-card autograph I received.


Overall, this is a solid early season offering from Panini. The new designs look great and I hope it is a sign of great things to come this season. The checklist could use a little more star power in the legends front especially in the autograph selection, but there are a ton of nice veteran autographs to be found. The value is there in most boxes, but the rookies really aren’t helping this season as only RNH is putting up big numbers, but we might see those rise with the breakout of a couple more rookies throughout this season or next. It’s just hard to review a few things with a hot box. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining at all and it was a blast.

As always, a big thank you goes out to Panini America for providing this product for review.

Video to come up soon, writing this too late tonight.

Preview: 2011-12 Panini Certified Hockey

I was just waking up when I got an email from my subscription to the Panini America blog. The newest post from Panini was something that I did not expect to see one bit, it’s time to get ready for some 2011-12 Panini Certified hockey with previews and images already coming out. Is it hockey season already? It seems like yesterday the Boston Bruins took down the Vancouver Canucks for the Stanley Cup title. The 2010-11 Panini hockey season hasn’t ended yet with 2010-11 Panini Dominion now set to release September 14, 2011, thanks to the NHLPA forcing the release to be later.

Now I enjoyed last year’s product. I didn’t have an official review because I opened the product about 1-2 months before I started this blog and didn’t write a review about it anywhere since I opened up in the middle of Canada while supporting my favorite sports card shop up in Edmonton. Actually, I was even shorted a hit and I still enjoyed the break. For the record, Panini did a great job replacing my missing hit.

This year’s product is an improvement off an already solid product last year. Returning are some of the great hits from last season like the Fabric of the Game inserts, more rookies, new inserts to the product, and the always popular Freshmen Signatures with new die-cut designs similar to 2010-11 Totally Certified basketball.

One very cool addition this year is the Soft Hands insert which feature pieces of game worn gloves from the players. Having played a little hockey myself, I really hope those gloves are washed a little bit. There is not a more disgusting smell then hockey gloves. But hey, some may like these possibly scented pieces of memorabilia.

(SCB Note: Per Clint at Panini, the game used glove set has been canned because of what appears to be acquisition problems. They will be using stick cards as replacements.)

You can find this product hitting shelves in November 2011 with probably a similar price range as last year.

You need to check out this Panini Peek of 2011 Certified hockey for more information and pictures!

Want to see some recent autographed arrivals?

How about some finished product from the QC department?

Preview: 2011 Panini Certified Football

2011 Panini Certified football is back with all the rookie and veteran goodness that makes it one of the favorite products of the early to mid season year in and year out. This year’s improvements look to make 2010 look like child’s play in comparison as Panini has been stepping up their game across the board doing their best to bring collectors closer to their favorite rookies with on-card hard signed autographs.

All 36 Rookie Premiere invitees lend their John Hancock directly onto the Freshmen Fabric set this year making this a first in Panini Certified history. Nothing like the beauty of a fresh, clean, on card autograph.

Each box will feature 10 packs again this year with a total of 4 autographs or memorabilia cards with at least 1 of them being an autograph. You will also find one parallel numbered to 250 or less, two rookies numbered to 999 or less, and two additional inserts, rookies, or parallels.

Besides the rookies you will find the usual veterans of the game plus some retired legends autographs like Dan Marino, Emmitt Smith, Jerry Rice, Barry Sanders, Brett Favre, and Joe Namath. Now those are some huge names signing for Certified this year and should bring some premium elements to this mid ranged product.

There will also be Platinum hot boxes inserted which every base card is replaced with a limited parallel. I love me some hot boxes and just knowing there are going to be some makes me excited for the possibilities when opening my box. Could it be a hot box? What great cards could I pull?

There is no announced release date yet, but last year this was released in November so I’m going to guess it’s around the same time frame. I’ll let you know more when more information is available.

Until then, check out some of the cards from the latest Panini Peek of 2011 Panini Certified Football.