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 Panini Gold Standard Football

Panini’s Gold Standard line is moving to football from the basketball arena and it looks just as good, if not better, then it’s basketball counterpart. While I kind of liked the entrapped autographs, when they weren’t cutting off the signatures, they seemed to have done away with those types of autographs in football and changed things up a bit.

Our box is in for review and here are some images of what we pulled. Remember, we have just started to try out this little slideshow feature, so if you don’t like it please let me know so I can try something else. If you love it, well tell me that too. Just trying to get less clutter on the review posts.

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As Beckett’s Chris Olds said in a Twitter post, this is probably the best use of foil board to date. And it rings true. I really like the design of this product with the gold foil board and the designs put forth on the cardboard. It really has an elegant and gold feel from opening up the gold bar shaped box to shuffling through the gold colored cards to see what you pulled. A couple of things I didn’t like though starts with the big white boxes for rookie autograph stickers. Okay, I get that these might stay around for awhile until something is figured out so here is a new idea. A white rectangle the size and shape of a sticker where you just place the sticker on top of it. It wouldn’t take away from the entire bottom part of the card. I’m also still not huge on the layout of the non-memorabilia inserts with the team logo. Sometimes it looks okay, but it just doesn’t look incorporated well in inserts like the Rivers.


For $200 you better have the checklist to back it up and Panini provides a great checklist for you to chase after. From the great looking rookie autographs in the silver pen to even some cards embedded with diamonds from super bowl winners, you can pull the hottest rookies and the greatest to ever take the field. You can really just pull about anyone in this product which I really like. I do think there may be too many rookies in this product however and that would be really my only complaint.


$200 for a box is a tough sell when you have plain jersey cards of rookies in the product. There is a huge potential for hit or miss in this product and having the plain rookie jerseys in it really puts a damper on the value. At least patch these bad boys up in your second highest priced product of the year. I got a total of one patch, on the Locker, and it’s not only numbered to 325, it’s a single color patch. Oy vey. It’s a little rough, but at least it’s of a top rookie. I can’t imagine if I pulled a Jerrel Jernigan or Bilal Powell as my rookie patch autograph and the rest of the cards I pulled. Discounting maybe some bad luck for some, there is the potential for huge hits as well with diamond embedded Super Bowl autographed cards and NFL Shields that could bring in quite a bit of money, as well as autographs from the top rookies of the year. Products like this are always hit or miss so you’ll have a lot of complaints.


Overall, this product has a solid design with a great use of foil board and the gold shines beautifully on these cards. With a few tweaks here and there I think it could look even better. But what would look better then some of the diamond embedded Super Bowl ring cards this product delivers featuring a great checklist of Super Bowl legends. Or maybe even a nice silver inked rookie autographed patch from a hot rookie. But you better hope you get lucky and pull a popular name as the other hits with plain jerseys and high numbered hits may drag down the value a little bit. $200 is a bit rough of a price to start out with, but if you wait it out a month or two, prices should drop a bit and you might find some better value. But if you’re up for a gamble, this is a very fun product to rip open.

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

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 ITG Enforcers Hockey

Who is your favorite hockey enforcer of all-time? My personal favorite would have to be Tie Domi of the Toronto Maple Leafs. His antics on and off the ice are that of a legend. Who else would knock someone out for calling him “Tie Dummy” on the ice?

Well I don’t know if Tie Domi will be in this set (I do now! And he’s in!), but when ITG Enforcers hockey comes out on January 19th, 2012, you will find a ton of the all-time great enforcers of the NHL. Players like Donald Brashear, Marty McSorely, or Tiger Williams will be featured in this set of pure brawn.

Each box of 2011-12 Enforcers hockey will feature 5 autographs of your favorite fighters. I wonder how they can sign their names with such fists of steel, but somehow Dr. Price got it done. You can also find 2 memorabilia cards per box as well featuring insert sets like Instigator, Combatants (dual), Fight Strap (#d/8), Fight Strap (1/1), and Tough Franchise (quad).

There will also be 5 limited base cards in each box with subsets like Record Holders, Tale of the Tape, Bloody Battles, and Tough Franchise.

There will only be 12 cards per box of this powerful product that packs a punch to the parietal.

All alliteration aside, this product will come with a limited run and only sent to those distributors who pre-order the product, so make sure your local shop knows you want to grab this product, pull it’s sweater over it’s head, and unleash a series of uppercuts.

And I have to say, I love the design with the drops of blood on the borders of the card and the autographs over the band-aids. Very nice touch.

For more information you can visit the ITG blog where it has a ton of info. Want the autographed and game used checklist?


Preview: 2011 Topps Triple Threads Football

Thanksgiving will have come and past, Black Friday will be a week ago memory, and Christmas will be on the horizon. Are you single and have some extra money from your Christmas bonus to blow? Maybe you hide your card collecting from your significant other and want to gamble on a high end box. Or maybe you know someone who would love a box of this product, like myself, and want to send them an early Christmas present. (If you need my address let me know!)

2011 Topps Triple Threads football is back and better than ever with an extra hit per pack giving you 4 hits per box now instead of just two at the same price we are accustomed to. First, I’m happy to see they are giving you an extra hit per box. I just hope it’s slightly better then the boring plain single jersey swatches you get in Triple Threads baseball.

Each pack will contain 2 base parallel cards numbered to 350 or less, 3 numbered base cards, 1 triple relic numbered to 36 or less, and 1 Triple Threads Unity autograph relics card numbered to 99 or less. Or you may get a pack with 1 autographed triple relic card numbered to 99 or less and 1 Triple Threads Unity relic card numbered to 36 or less. Which means there will be some boring plain single jersey cards in this $175 product as one of your 4 hits.

Some of the case hits include 1 of 1 autographed triple relic cards and triple autographed relic cards numbered to 36 or less. So at least the case hits look like they will be something nice to behold, but aren’t they always?

Another worry I have is that Topps has included way too many rookies compared to veterans in their products this year. I know it’s a pretty good rookie class, but a lot of the rookies are still not even worthy of being in a product like this. I just hope there are more veteran possibilities with less of the crappy rookies. I mean, in my review last year, I got lucky and pulled a book card of a Hall of Famer, but if I pulled another swatch of a rookie, it would have been terrible. We’ll see what happens this year.

November 30, 2011 is the release date. It’s definitely one of the bigger gambles, but it has some great possibilities for big hits as well.