The landscape of football trading cards continues to change at a dizzying pace. Just a few months ago, long-time NFL champ Topps was forced to exit the football market. Now, the top producer, especially of high end releases, is also exiting stage left.

If you have not yet read on SCU, Upper Deck has lost its NFL license after failing to secure a new agreement with NFL Properties. I first learned of the story through this article, passed on to me by an executive at another card company. UD has officially announced it will not be producing any NFL sets for the 2010 season.

The NFL now has just one official license, granted to Panini, a company few had heard of before they also received an NBA exclusive license about a year ago. After buying the rights to the Donruss, Playoff, and Score brands, collectors will still be able to recognize NFL products this year, but there will be an obvious hole left in the release calendar. If competition is the root of creativity and prosperity, the football card market as a whole may be in grave danger sooner than later.

I think I just lost my dream to own my own hobby shop someday…


3 Responses to RIP UD

  1. “I think I just lost my dream to own my own hobby shop someday…”

    You aren’t kidding on that one.

  2. jswaykos says:

    I wouldn’t event think about opening a hobby shop any more – just not worth the effort. I wonder if UD will still put out NCAA Sweet Spot? I still don’t know how I feel about this whole one manufacturer thing. I guess it hasn’t been too bad for baseball so far, but I’ve been far less excited about cards in 2010 than I was in 2009. I struggled to find packs worth purchasing at the shop the other day. Why pay a lot for older packs when virtually all of the hits are available super cheap online?

  3. Tim H. says:

    THat’s it! I’m forming an Amish Football Team!

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