The other day, I was looking through the checklist of the 1975 Topps football set and saw the George Blanda had two consecutive cards, #7 and #8. I then read that this was the only time Topps has put a player on consecutive cards, but why?
The answer is pretty simple, and it’s rooted in his longevity in the game. George Blanda played an incredible 26 seasons of professional football as a kicker and quarterback between 1949 and 1974. His statistics were too long to fit on the back of a single card, along with his vitals/biography, so Topps made two cards, one is now known as the Black Jersey card and another now referred to as the White Jersey card.
Blanda threw for 26,920 yards and tossed 236 touchdowns as a quarterback, and made 335 field goals and 943 extra points as a kicker. He also had the NFL record for interceptions thrown with 277 until Brett Favre broke that record. When Blanda retired, he was pro football’s scoring leader with 2002 points, but now sits 7th on the list behind Adam Vinatieri, Morten Andersen, Gary Andersen, Jason Hanson, John Carney, and Matt Stover. He went into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1981, which was the first year he was eligible.
Some collectors consider the two 1975 Topps Blanda cards to be tributes since the Black Jersey card (#7) shares his bio and key achievements, while the White Jersey card (#8) lists his career scoring record (he scored nine touchdowns too).
The White Jersey card is a little more challenging in premium (PSA 9/10) grades than the Black Jersey card, but that doesn’t result in a price premium.
Overall, PSA has graded 193 Black Jersey 1975 Topps George Blanda cards. Here are some more population and price sale data for Blanda’s 1975 Topps #7 card:
- PSA 10 – Pop 9 – Last two sales were $100 in September 2021 and $84 in August 2021
- PSA 9 – Pop 68 – Last two sales were $35 in February 2022 and $37 in October 2021
- PSA 8 – Pop 71 – Just over a $10
PSA has graded 197 White Jersey 1975 Topps George Blanda cards. Here are the population and price sale data for card #8:
- PSA 10 – Pop 11 – last two sales were $84 in August 2021 and $80 in October 2017
- PSA 9 – Pop 54 – last two sales were $26 in July 2021 and $40 in December 2020
- PSA 8 – Pop 83 – Just under $10
The 528-card 1975 Topps football set features another Blanda card too. Card #351 is a record holder card honoring Blanda as the All-Time Scoring Leader. Funny enough, it’s a Pop 1 in PSA 10, so it would be the most expensive Gem Mint 10 of his three 1975 Topps football cards.
The fact that Topps only once put a player on consecutive base cards is the sort of vintage trivia I really enjoy. And it makes sense that Topps would have wanted to honor Blanda’s career accomplishments this way in the final set he’d be in as a player. What’s particularly nice is if you want these cards graded, the pair, in PSA 8 condition, will only cost you $20, happy collecting!