Saturday, 29 January 2011

Around the blogroll

The end of this week I've really been struck hard by the flu, I'm currently writing this while being bed bound and running a fever. One of the plus points of being bed bound, is the fact I've had a lot of time to catch up on the latest updates to my blogroll. With plenty of my time on my hands I though I'd share some of the highlights with you.

One of the big releases of the past week was Topps supreme, while supreme is a bit out of my price range I've found a couple of great reviews both at A Cardboard Problem and Enough already. It however doesn't appear to be all rosey with Topps supreme, it looks as though they're using slightly different card designs to give cards lower numberings again.

I do like many collectors out there find myself becoming very critical of Panini, they do seem have a habit of flooding the market with similar products (the fact plates and patches started life as an insert in a different product is a great example of this), and having somewhat questionable design choices sometimes. However I do think they are leaps and bounds ahead of the competition when it comes to digital marketing and being in touch with customers, something fleshed out a lot more in this post from collectors crack.

Talking of Panini being under fire, a member of blowout cards forum recently claimed to have received a 1/1 Sam Bradford auto (and other amazing cards) as a replacement for redemptions. If you haven't heard about it this is a great place to start. Steven at sports card file put up a really interesting post about how something like this could happen.

Colby at cardboard collections is putting together a great group break which is definitely worth checking out .
As always Colin and Ryan at the sports card radio forum a putting together some awesome contests.

Hopefully service will resume as normal next week, as I have quite a few packs to break and some maildays to post about.

Thanks for reading

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Bang for my buck

This is another post of cards that I've managed to find for less than a $ on eBay. There's aren't quite as good as my last pick ups, or the ones that should be in the post.

Arrelious Benn. Topps 2010, Jersey


Lee Evans, Topps 2010, Jersey

Jason Pierre-Paul, Topps 2010, Black Rookie 

Pat White, Sage, Autograph 196/400

Derek Anderson, Sage red

Ronnie Brown, Sage Silver

Jonathan Dwyer, Press Pass 2010, Auto 26/199

Eric Decker, Press Pass 2010, Auto

Zac Robinson. Press Pass 2010, Auto

Zac Robinson, Press Pass 2010, Auto 16/99

Freddie Barnes, Press Pass 2010, Auto

Dorin Dickerson, Press Pass 2010, Auto

A lot of rookies that are yet to prove themselves, and some pro's that are yet to really prove themselves either. While my collecting is yet to really focus itself I'm happy to pick up bundles of 'Hits' for less than a dollar each.

Saturday, 22 January 2011

State of frustration

As a collector from the UK a lot of the cards and packs I buy will come through eBay. This means I have to put a lot of trust in sellers, whether this trust comes in the form of actually shipping my goods or not searching the packs that I buy from them. I try to buy from those who have hobby shops, which would hopefully mean they would take this seriously and not see it as an opportunity to put one over on a customer. However I sometimes get tempted into buying packs/boxes from those who seem to do it as a one off not as a business. I always make sure I buy from people with a good rating, and mostly positive comments, but I have recently discovered that this doesn't guarantee an honest seller. Two sellers I bought packs/boxes off just before Christmas have deactivated their eBay accounts and won't reply to any emails I have sent them. eBay do seem to be on top of the situation, having refunded some of the disagreements at the time of posting this. I just don't understand why people would do this, I can't see them getting away with the money, and it just causes a lot of unnecessary hassle and me feeling even more suspicious of those I buy from. I will never know whether the packs I buy have been searched, this is blind trust that I will never be able to know is being lived up to.

Whilst this has been going on I have started to discover that collecting isn't merely about the acquisition of cards, it's also a community. A community that I'm more and more starting to feel part of, so I'd like to round off a post about negative experiences with a thank you to those who have made me feel welcome into the collecting community, not just on here but on the sports card radio forum as well.

Friday, 21 January 2011

Contest alert!

This is a competition you've probably already heard, but if you haven't you definitely need to head over to all about cards. The grand prize is all of the card boxes you see below.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

eBay on the cheap

These are some cards I found for around $1 on eBay. I really wanted the Marshall Faulk patch, and the seller did really good shipping, so I thought I might as well pick up some of their other lots at a really cheap price.

Byron Leftwich, Patch from 2007 Ultimate Collection, 67/99
I have a bit of a soft spot for Byron Leftwich, he's always been a solid backup when the Steelers have needed him, and this is just a great looking four colour patch (almost five, there's a tiny bit of white in the right hand corner)

Dunta Robinson, Rookie Auto from 2004 SP Authentic, 252/990
Still one of the highest paid CB's in the league. His absence in the Texan's secondary has been obvious this season. A very nice on card auto of a NFL starter.

Mohamed Massaquoi, Patch and ball from 2009 Gridiron gear 47/50
Massaquoi has become a starter in the Browns offense, and despite having a couple of unspectacular seasons is still expected to become a solid starter in the league.

Marshall Faulk, Patch from 2005 Ultimate Collection 02/50
And the card that started it all off. I couldn't resist a low numbered patch card from a future hall of famer.

Over all I'm happy with the cards and what I paid for them. I do think in future I need to be slightly more focussed in my collecting, but for now am happy picking up nice cards at even better prices.

Monday, 17 January 2011

Pack Busting

I'm going to round up the packs I busted at the end of last week in one post, otherwise I can see myself getting behind with the blog again. All of these are hobby packs bought through ebay. I've also decided to start rating the packs, at the moment I'm buying packs of a lot of different sets to get a feel for which sets I want to collect, so I'm going to be making very snap judgements on just one pack.

Pack One; Upper Deck 2006 NFL Legends

Joe Cribbs,
Johnny Rodgers,
Antonio Freeman,
Steve Smith,
Marshall Faulk

I'd never heard of this product before, and I love cards with legendary players on them, so this product seemed perfect for me. I really like clean classy design of the cards, very fitting with the theme of the set and not to in your face (looking at you panini). The checklist looks really solid and for the price I paid this may be a set I try and complete.
Nice base design and good checklist.

Pack Two; Rookies and Stars 2006

Rudi Johnson,
Eric Moulds,
Larry Fitzgerald,
Jabar Gaffeny,
Roy Williams

I'm not too sure why I bought this pack as I wasn't too impressed with 09 version, and the 06 outing did nothing to change my mind. I'm not a huge fan of the players being put against a background instead of using the full shot, and the background here is just a bit too busy for me. I also pulled another Rudi Johnson who haunts me.
Not a fan of the base design. I can only see 2 stars in this pack and no rookies, so it doesn't really live up to it's name.

Pack Three; 2008 Topps Chrome

Braylon Edwards,
Dan Connor (Rc),
Reggie Wayne (Pro Bowl),
Brett Favre flight to 420 insert (398)

I really like the design of these cards, the chrome affect makes what I thought was a poor design on the normal Topps chrome set look really great here. Not a massive Favre fan, but it would have improved the insert card if the photo was a shot of the TD pass, not favre stepping back.

I love the way the Chrome effect is used to enhance the design. Nice selection of cards/inserts for a four card pack.   4/5

Pack Four; Topps NFL 2009

Chad Pennington,       Joey Porter,    
Roy Williams,             Sean Smith (Rc),
Keith Bullock,            Johnny Knox (Rc),
Michael Turner (Pro Bowl),
Tony Gonzalez (Pro Bowl)

The design is very stripped back and lets the (mostly) top class photography take centre stage. I liked the amount of variety given in a pack with not all base, though I did only get 8 instead of the promised 10 cards which left me a bit miffed.

Cheap. Simple design. Reasonable selection. Odds even in a hobby pack are a bit high. Great for people new to collecting.                                                                                    3/5

Pack Five; Bowman Chrome 2009

Darrius Heyward-Bey (Rc)

Eddie Royal
DeSean Jackson
Bernard Berrian
The base design is striking, and enhanced by the chrome effect. I like the idea of putting green around the rookies, I would like it even more if I pulled a better rookie. I'm also not to sure why the back talks about their draft and their career.

Solid design. Ok pack. The cards are very bowed.

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Contest alert!

Second contest alert of the day. Head over here to check it out.

Contest alert!

Charles over at hoopography has got a great contest running. The prize being some Donruss rated rookies and a Jersey card. I highly recommend checking the contest and the blog out.

Playoff Predictions

Ravens 14 - Steelers 17

Hopefully it's going to live up to it's billing of a good old fashioned hard hitting game. With the Ravens offense sputtering, and their defense not quite as dominant this year, I think the Steelers are going to win this by a whisker.

NFC Divisional Game 1, Sat 8 ET

Packers 31 - Falcons 17

The Packers are starting to look sharp at just the right time, and if the manage to get a running game again this week I think they could be too much for the Falcons.

NFC Divisional Game 2, Sun 1 ET

Seahawks 20 - Bears 24

Despite the Bears having a lot better regular season record this is game I'm least sure about. The Bears defence started to show some holes towards the end of the regular season, and the Seahawks won the first time these two teams met. Seattle could turn out to be the real surprise team of the playoffs.

AFC Divisional Game 2, Sun 4:30 ET

Jets 14 - Patriots 34

The war of the words finally hits the field, and I think it's going to be an extremely one sided game. The Pats defense have been quietly dominant towards the end of the season, and the jets offense hasn't been much to write home about this year. Look for Tom Brady to show off what made him this years MVP against an overrated Jets D.

Hope everyone has a great playoff weekend

Pack busting take one

Today I finally got my hands on some fresh packs to bust, which I will be posting over the next couple of days. I also got a new scanner, which will make posting cards a lot less of painful process.

The first pack to be busted is a pack of 2010 Topps chrome football. This was my first pack of chrome cards, and I instantly fell in love with the look. The chrome affect really adds something to this years Topps base design, which I loved anyway. I had heard about a lot of bowing and dust in this years Topps chrome, and was pleased to find that this wasn't the case with the pack I got.

Two rookies who have both played this year. I honestly don't know that much about Damian Williams, but Nate Allen has taken over the starting safety position for the Eagles.

Another rookie, I'm not sure if 3 rookies in a pack of chrome is normal, or whether this is just a rookie laden pack, either way I'm not complaining. A lot of people have been talking about Jimmy Graham recently, and from what I've seen he's extremely promising for a guy who hasn't played much football.

And finally a retro pro bowl selection card of Eric Dickerson. 

I really like the look, feel and card choice in this pack. Definitely a product I will be buying again.

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Thank you Panini

In an earlier post I mentioned that I had been informed that I had won a twitter contest from panini. The card arrived the other day,. It marked a couple of firsts for me as a collector, my first basketball card and my first autograph.

Evan Turner Phenoms jersey autograph from Limited 10-11

I could not be happier with the card.It's a great looking card that I got just for following Panini on twitter. Panini were very quick at contacting me, which considering it was christmas eve I was really impressed with. I was also impressed by the fact that there didn't seem to be any issue with sending to the UK. This surprised me considering how difficult it is to get packs or boxes over here I didn't expect Panini to be prepared to send the card abroad. So kudos to Panini for the great competition and card.

Round up

Just as I think I'm going to have time to blog things suddenly get hectic in my life again.With things calming down again I'm back to trying to kick this blog off. I've decided not to write up on the breaks I've had in the past, as I will continue to lag behind.

In those breaks I did however pull my first hit. This Torry Holt jersey card from Gridion gear 09, numbered 126/250

I've also started to branch out into buying single cards from ebay. This first lot were a bit of an impulse purchase, but were dirt cheap.
Jonathan Dwyer and Brandon LaFell, both from press pass 2010, and both # /100. Also a Harry Douglass jersey out of 2009 Upper Deck, unnumbered.

I apologise for the quality of the photos. I will hopefully be getting a scanner soon so won't have to deal with the hassle of trying to use an Iphone at night.