Live Today: 2009 Upper Deck Icons

The popular new line from 2008 is back this year. This 90s-esque shiny product is available in boxes of 10 packs of 6 cards each (12 boxes per case). The 200-card base set consists of 100 veterns and stars, 70 rookies, and 30 legends.

This product is chop full of inserts and parallels, including NFL Icons, Greats of the Game, Sophomore Sensations, Decade of Dominance, and die-cut parallels galore. Also included are several autograph sets (including NFL Rookies, NFL Legends, Class of 2009, etc.), memorabilia sets (including NFL Reflections, Greats of the Game, NFL Icons, etc.), and the return of the Immortal and Movie Letterman sets. New this year are Sports Letterman and Sweet Spot Icons, which will feature autographs of sports legends and pop culture stars on cross sections of mini NFL helmets, planting directly into the cardboard. I believe all inserts are on foil board and serial numbered. On average, a box will give you 2 Letterman inserts, 2 foil numbered memorabilia inserts, 1 foil numbered autograph insert, and at least 10 foil numbered cards (including at least 1 die-cut). Autographed Letterman cards will fall 2 per case, on average.

Click each tiny thumbnail for full sized mock-up

Disclaimer: the above images were unofficial mock-ups presented by Upper Deck a few months ago for press release purposes. The actual product may differ slightly.

This is a nice product, especially for early-season releases. I got two boxes of 2008 Icons last year and was pretty pleased with them (it didn’t hurt that Emmitt was on the box). The base set and inserts are all well designed and the foil board is used well here. As an early-season release, cards probably will not hold their immediate secondary market value, but they are very nice additions to player, “hit”, or sets collections. I am not a huge fan of the letterman inserts as they are all manu-patches and they generally spell out random words (rather than the player’s last name like it should be), but I do admit the cards look nice. I am not sure what to think about the Sweet Spot auto insert set. I will need to see some before I make a decision. I am not a big fan of non-football (and especially non-sports) figures in my football box, so it is not starting off on the right foot, but we’ll see. A box of 2009 Icons will set you back around $70-80.

Quick sidenote: I find it wonderfully amusing that both players on the die-cut NFL Reflections insert pictured above will NOT be playing in those jerseys this coming season. Hopefully some of that will be remedied in the actual product.

So what are your initial reactions? Will you take it, leave it, or maybe just track down some singles on the secondary market?


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