I’ve mentioned a few times that I’m a checklist collector. However, when asked about team checklists, I say I don’t collect them, but that’s only because I need to focus my collection a little bit. But that’s not to say I’m not a fan of team checklists, and one such set that I think is cool is the 1973 Topps Football Team Checklists, and in this article, I’ll dive deeper into this “insert” set.
There are 26 cards, one for each National Football League team, in the 1973 Topps Team Checklist football card set. They’re unnumbered and were inserted in packs. The upper quarter of the card is an action photo. Beneath that is a Topps helmet, the team name, and the words “Team Checklist.” Then the bottom 2/3 of the card is an alphabetical list of players, with the card number on the left of the player name, their uniform number to the right, and lastly, their position. The back of the cards are a sort of puzzle that together form photos of Joe Namath and Larry Brown.
Unfortunately, as I said, I don’t have these cards, so I can’t piece them all together, but I did find one of Joe Namath online and a photo of all the backs, but not in “order.”
PSA has graded 871 1973 Topps Team Checklists, and fewer than 10% have hit ultra high-grade PSA 10 or PSA 9 grades. There are 7 PSA 10s and 69 PSA 9s. However, there are a lot of eights and sevens with 314 and 203, respectively. So in ultra-high-end, these are tough cards, but the eye-appealing 7/8 range cards are readily available (and affordable).
The most commonly graded checklists are the Green Bay Packers, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Los Angeles Rams. And the least graded are a pair of ties; there are only 21 graded Chicago Bears and New York Jets checklists and 22 graded Atlanta Falcons and St. Louis Cardinals team checklists.
In the past few years, a few higher-end sales include a PSA 10 Dallas Cowboys checklist for $482 in June 2019, a PSA 9 Atlanta Falcons for $599 in early 2020, and a PSA 9 New York Jets checklist for $214 in mind 2019.
You can pick up complete raw sets for around $25, but depending on condition and markings, sets can be as low as $10 or as high as $75.
There are also variations where one or two asterisks can be found printed next to the copyright symbol.
Once I check off a few of my bucket list checklists, the 1973 Topps Football Team Checklists will be a set that I will go after. As you can see above, a complete set of these looks great together and could make an excellent wall display for a football fan. Let me know in the comments or on Twitter if you have any of these cards and happy collecting!