Portis Autograph Costly

Portis Autograph Costly

Clinton Portis' authentic autographed cards are going up. Also, from the vault, a look at "Error Cards."

These cards come in packs already autographed or you send in a redemption card to the card manufacturer. Most of these cards are numbered and limited. Some are limited to several hundred cards, others are limited to 25, 10 or even sometimes to just one card. People refer to these cards as rare. I would describe them as having artificial or manufactured rarity.

The last four Portis autographed cards on eBay sold for $72, $64, $62 and $100. Those numbers are up quite a bit from what his cards were selling for at the beginning of the season.

The last four autographed Jason Campbell cards on eBay went for much less –- $26, $21, $11, and $11. Campbell cards slipped from their early high numbers when he was a rookie. After proving himself this season as the firm starter, his prices seem to be moving back up. However, they are still relatively low because there are so many – literally hundreds of different Jason Campbell autograph cards available. The market is a bit saturated. Every poor soul who thought he was going to collect them all must have given up unless he is being bankrolled by Warren Buffett. In his rookie year, many of his cards were consistently selling in the $100 to $300 range, sometimes eclipsing these numbers.

In my opinion, these cards are fun to collect, but I would not buy them as an investment, because the card companies keep making more and more. Even after a player is deceased, or is unable to sign, like Redskins legend Sam Baugh, the companies procure signed items, such as checks, cut the signatures out, and make cards of them. In Baugh's case, he signed through the mail for over 50 years so there are plenty of his autographs out there.

Autograph News:

The Chantilly Show was well attended, and the Redskins players seemed to have steady lines, even given some of the high fees, such as $75 for Jason Campbell and $80 for Sonny Jurgensen. Hall of Famer Ken Houston, who is always a pleasure to meet, was definitely a relative bargain at $25.

From the Vault:

"Error" cards have always held a great allure for collectors, and many famous errors have occurred with baseball cards. The Redskins had a fun one back in 1982, when they had one of their greatest years, culminating in a Super Bowl XVII victory over the Miami Dolphins. Back then Topps was the only company that made football cards. One was happy if one's favorite player was pictured on a card. If your favorite player was Don Warren, you were not so lucky. Even though Topps attempted to make a card of the current scout and former unparalleled blocking tight end, they failed. The card says Don Warren, TE, and it has Don's bio and stats on the back, but on the front, just above Warren's name is pictured #83, wide receiver Ricky Thompson. The card was never corrected so it is not a rare or valuable card, and can be procured for around a quarter at a card show, but it is an oddity.

Samu Qureshi is considered the foremost of Redskins collectors. His column appears exclusively on WarpathInsiders.com each Tuesday and Warpath magazine monthly.

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