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Posts Tagged ‘Santa Claus’

Here’s a Gifford signed on the front

In 1992 Portraits on April 16, 2013 at 12:43 am

gifford signed on front

Here’s a Frank Gifford Pro Line autograph that sold this month on eBay that was signed on the front.

The only other Gifford I’d seen was signed on the back.

Shortly after publishing this post, I received an email from someone who has two Gifford certified autographs, one on the front and one on the back. He asked which is more rare. Here is what I wrote to him:

I really have no hard data about which is more “common,” which is a poor term because any certified Gifford auto is extremely rare.

I think most people prefer the autograph to be on the front. I’ve heard stories that Pro Line asked the players to sign on the back, even that they asked the players to sign on the bottom strip of the back where there is no writing. I’m not sure that these stories are true, but I don’t know that they’re false. If you look at the Santa and Mrs. Claus cards, those autographs, which obviously were done by the Pro Line folks themselves, are almost exclusively on the front. So why would they ask the players to sign on the back and then sign the Christmas cards on the front? Seems inconsistent.

But if they didn’t ask the players to sign on the back, why did so many of them do it? And why did so many of them sign the small strip at the bottom where there is no writing? I can see where some players might have done so because the photo on the front of their card is quite dark and the signature might not have been easy to see.

But despite any rumors about where the players were told to sign, I’ve heard and read complaints from collectors who think signing on the back is not as desirable as on the front. I think that desirability can have a great deal of significance to collectors. But if you get right down to it, this card is so hard to find that any Pro Line collector is going to be thrilled to acquire one, front or back.

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Ahmad Rashad sells for $271

In 1991 Portraits, 1992 Portraits on August 19, 2012 at 10:40 pm

Image

Jeremy Nierenberg, a card dealer in Tamarac, Fla., recently bought a lot of Pro Line cards from a collector. He is selling them individually on eBay, and he recently appears to have sold a Frank Gifford card for $299.

The collection had some rare cards in it, and one was this Ahmad Rashad card. Nierenberg’s buy-it-now price was $499.99, but he also was accepting best offers on the card. Apparently the high offer was $271.

Some other highlights were Reggie Langhorne selling for $271.50, Alonzo Highsmith for $177.51, Mark Carrier of the Bears for $128.04, Greg Townsend for $143.51, Albert Lewis for $95.

Oddly, the 1991 Roger Staubach Portraits card went for $120, which is a little high, IMHO.

His most recent set of auctions range from Ronnie Lott or Phil Simms starting at about $20 to John Elway at about $80 and Santa Claus at a C-note.

And if you’re looking for more prices that more Pro Line cards from 1991, 1992 or 1993 sold for, check out my Market Data section here. It’s not a price guide. It’s a list of sale prices that I am aware of. Some might be tremendous bargains. I recently bought a 1992 Thurman Thomas Profiles card for less than $5. That’s a great deal. Other prices might be gross overpayments. Maybe that Staubach that i mentioned a few paragraphs ago was too much. But, as I enter more results, a clearer picture will emerge of approximately how much other people are paying for the exact same card. And through that collection of data, perhaps readers will be able to gauge a fair range of prices for any particular card when buying or selling.

Another Mrs. Claus variant

In 1992 Portraits, Oddities on December 27, 2011 at 7:03 am


Here’s another variant on the 1992 Mrs. Claus autographed Pro Line insert. This one has two autographs one it. Check out the photo of Santa. The Pro Line Santa Claus stand-in signed his framed picture for Mrs. Claus.

Very interesting. And once again, it makes me wonder how many are like this and what other surprises were/are lurking in those silver, black and white foil packs.

There’s all this talk about Santa Claus, but …

In 1991 Portraits, 1992 Portraits on December 20, 2011 at 6:03 am


If you’re collecting the entire run of certified Pro Line autographs, do you also collect the Santa Claus cards?

They’re certified. They’ve got the stamp. They’ve got an autograph. No idea whose signature it is. But unless Virginia knows something the rest of us don’t, it ain’t Santa’s.

And that’s my problem with the cards. The Pro Line Claus cards are fun, but I’m not interested in them for the purposes of collecting the set. Those just aren’t legitimate autographs.

I know my mind might change when, someday, I have all the cards and am desperate to continue the hunt. And when the search for the elusive Chris Miller Profiles cards someday dries up, I might search for the Clauses just to prolong the search for one more embossed, autographed card that I don’t have..

According to a few sources, Pro Set was the first to issue a Santa Card, in 1991. Then the Pro Line Santa (top of page) was released afterward. It may be obvious, but Pro Line was the first “autographed” Santa card. And it wasn’t enough to have a short print of autographed santa cards in addition to the “regular” Santa, which, I believe, also was a short print. But Pro Line also produced an autographed Santa that was numbered to 200. The first card was signed simply “Santa.” The second, numbered card has an autograph that reads “Santa Claus.” In 2010, Beckett said this numbered Santa insert is the most expensive of all the Santa Cards made since 1991. At the time it booked for $60, according to Beckett.

I’ll rant about the prices of Pro Line autographs (or any card, for that matter) in the Beckett guide some other time. But this adds to my frustration about the Santa card being part of the set. If you acquire a certified, stamped Santa card — but not the numbered one — do you still have to get the numbered one to finish the set? I suppose it depends on how much of a completist you are. But it vexes me that they added this make-believe autograph to the set. Then, it wasn’t enough to have one, they had to use the same card and add 200 more autographs with a gimmicky twist.

Why not add another card, one signed “Kris Kringle” that would be numbered to 50? Or one with a “Father Christmas” autograph numbered to 25? Where will it end? There are more names for Santa. All you need is a Sharpie and an embossing stamp with the Pro Line logo.

Anyway, in 1992, Pro Line produced another Santa chase card but added a Mrs. Claus, too, also signed and embossed. Here’s a picture of them (below).