Monday, December 29, 2008

Value Bumps: Year In Review

This year, the NFL was a mush pot of craziness, mainly because everything went in the opposite direction of what was expected. There were so many surprises over the course of the season, that I went into each week expecting something to happen. Now, heading into the playoffs, its become pretty obvious that 2008 will be a year that many will remember for both good and very very bad reasons.

Before the preseason, everyone was talking about God, or as people in Green Bay call him, "Brettius Favrosis the Magnificent." First he had retired, then he came back, then he wanted out of the cheese factory in Green Bay (BLASPHEMY!!). Eventually he ended up with New York, and Aaron Rodgers was set up for the franchise. Both the Pack and the Jets missed the playoffs, so im guessing Tony Kornheiser died a little inside, but it didn’t stop people from flipping a shit over Favre in the news and in the hobby. Favre cards of him on the Jets went nuts, and Rodgers got a pretty big bump out of the gate due to his early play.

Of course, with the BMOC now in NYC, poor Chad Pennington had nowhere to go, so he took a chance on the 1-15 Miami thinking that it would be a good place to showcase his lack of recent talent. In true 2008 fashion, and in the biggest turn around in NFL history, they end up 11-5 thanks to their new found winning combo of Pennington, Brown and the Wildcat. Who do they beat in week 17 to secure the division? Why the New York Jets! That could be the best 'Fuck You' ever. Chad's cards had never really been worth all that much, and that really didn’t change, but that didn’t mean that people like Ronnie Brown and John Beck didn’t get anything out of it. Brown's value went way up, while Beck's went way down, no surprises there. Maybe those 2005 boxes of Exquisite will finally be worth the break now.

Staying within the division, Tom Brady, ladies man, gets his leg torn off, and Matt Cassel, a guy who seemed to be everything that every Pats-hater loves, was left with the team in his hands. We all expected a miserable season, though as things went on, it seemed like Cassel was just as good as could be expected within Bellichick's system. Even though half the team was out for the season with Brady, the Pats finish 11-5, though they miss the playoffs. It couldn’t be more perfect. Just goes to show you that personel isnt the only thing that makes a team good. As a result, and even though they didnt make the playoffs, Cassel's cards hit the high notes, and you can expect that when he pulls a Matt Schaub and goes elsewhere, the value might stay in the same region.

From the Pats, to the team that beat them, it was truly a great year for the Giants. Number one seed, home field advantage through the playoffs, everything was going great as the end was in sight. Then Plaxico went out for a night with the boys carrying a little too much protection. The Giants lose their top receiver, but don’t really lose much of a step in beating the Panthers the following week. With everything already sewn up, its not too big of a deal to retool things a little.

Interestingly enough, they lose to the Vikings in week 17, which gives Purple Jesus his first playoff birth and an exclamation point to his mammoth season. I thought that this would be a mid to okay season for AD, but in true Peterson fashion, that joke was on me. The Vikings win the division thanks to Peterson and Gus "Bang Your Head" Frerotte's return to glory, leaving the Pack at 6-10 and Peterson with a rushing title. Amazing. Peterson's cards hover about where they ended after 2007, which is a feat in itself, as most people thought that it would be crazy to buy in (including me). Yet, after 2008, we may have to change our tune on value and hype thanks to the Peterson deisel.

Rookies in 2008 were not anything to forget either, as this years class was nothing short of remarkable. Matty Ice Ryan takes his team to the playoffs after a miserable 2007 season, and does it in a freakishly amazing show of skill. Flacco and the Ravens equal his success and take their team to the playoffs too, capping the first time I can remember where TWO RC QBs take their teams to the playoffs without looking like they are amateurs. Both of their card values went through the roof, rightfully so, and now with a playoffs ahead, the sky is the limit (see Roethlisberger for more info).

QBs were not the only RCs to make big news either, as Chris Johnson, Matt Forte, and Jonathan Stewart made people remember why RBs are always a good bet. The thing was that it wasn’t those three that were tops in value to begin the season, and the guys who were are now at half the price in some cases (see McFadden and Mendenhall).

Lastly, we move to the Lions, as they looked like they were playing a team of RCs every week. They end up as the worst team in NFL history at 0-16, and really, it was expected. The only bright spot was Calvin Johnson, who may have been the first Lions draft pick in years to actually be good. Too bad he will end up in Canton for all the wrong reasons.

My NFL MVP: Drew Brees or Kurt Warner
Defensive MVP: James Harrison
My NFL ROY: Matt Ryan
Comeback POY: Chad Pennington
Biggest Surprise: Falcons and Ravens win with RCs
Best QB: Drew Brees
Best RB: Adrian Peterson
Best WR: Andre Johnson
Best RC QB: Matt Ryan
Best RC RB: Chris Johnson and Matt Forte (tie)
Best RC WR: Eddie Royal

As a person who followed the NFL more closely this year than ever, it was great to document the hobby fluctuations here on the blog for the first time. I think that we still have a great playoffs coming up to hopefully fill those mind sanctuaries for the 6 months ahead with no football, and I will guarantee that I will make sure to let you guys know how I feel. Also, with the Draft in the months after the Super Bowl, I hope that 2009 will look as good as 2008 did.

Thanks to all of you footballers out there, I think its baseball dominated blog world, and its nice to see there are a lot of you on here who still collect cards from the gridiron.


  1. I would like to point out that Steve Slaton has a better set of stats this year than ANY rookie RB, leading the league in yards by a rookie, over both Chris Johnson and Matt Forte.

  2. Gellman, your NFL Best QB/MVP should be Philip Rivers. His stats will astound you.

  3. Except he sucks ( Rivers) when he plays the Steelers..