Justin Herbert entered the 2022 NFL season as one of the MVP favorites on the field and one of the most popular purchases in the card market. Injured rib cartilage, a slow start for the Chargers, and overall market decline has resulted in some of his key rookies tanking in value, however.
Is there a clear path forward for Herbert’s market amid several obstacles? Read about that and more in this week’s NFL Market Movers.
Cards listed below are PSA 10s with a minimum of 10 sales over the last 30 days.
PRICE GROWTH PERCENTAGE RISERS
1. Tony Pollard 2019 Prizm Base PSA 10 📈 264%
5. Myles Garrett 2017 Prizm Silver PSA 10 📈 106%
MARKET MIRAGE: It’s not hard to find the prime example in the NFL market of a bump that’s just not going to last. Tony Pollard did an incredible job filling in for Cowboys starting running back Ezekiel Elliott on Sunday — 131 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 14 carries is phenomenal regardless of the player. It’s just hard to see how this continues for Pollard.
Running backs are already shaky investments for a variety of reasons, but the reality is that the best-case scenario for Pollard, if we ignore all of those reasons, is a platoon with Elliott. To put this into perspective, Pollard’s 14 rushes against Chicago are a season-high, and his 81 total attempts this season are rapidly closing in on his career-high of 130 due to his primary use as a third-down back.
Those who flipped his cards should be happy, though expect a serious course correction in the near future once Elliott returns to the field.
PRICE GROWTH PERCENTAGE DECLINERS
1. Tom Brady 2013 Prizm Base PSA 10 📉 62%
2. Deebo Samuel 2019 Prizm Base PSA 10 📉 57%
3. CeeDee Lamb 2020 Optic Holo PSA 10 📉 54%
BAD SIGNS FOR RECEIVERS? The problem with skill positions when it comes to collecting is that just too much has to go right for most of those players to be successful. Before a star like Deebo Samuel or CeeDee Lamb ever catches a pass, the ball has to be snapped properly, the offensive line has to hold up, and the quarterback has to properly read the defense and accurately deliver the pass.
This is likely a major reason why we’re seeing some decline in the markets for Samuel and Lamb — inconsistent QB play has collectors and fans nervous. Prescott has only played in three games so far this season for Dallas, and Jimmy Garoppolo has always been more of a game-manager than gunslinger in San Francisco. These concerns are all fair, and it’s had a major impact on key cards from both Samuel and Lamb. The markets for both are down overall, too, with Samuel’s PSA 10s tracked by Market Movers down 26% collectively over the last 30 days while Lamb’s are down 22%.
DOLLAR GROWTH RISERS
MCCAFFREY KEEPS RISING: For the second week in a row, Christian McCaffrey’s market has trended in an extremely promising direction. Over the last 30 days, the 49ers running back’s PSA 10s tracked by Market Movers are up 66% collectively, and we’re now starting to see some strong dollar growth in addition to the previous percentage change.
A $64 card a month ago, McCaffrey’s 2017 Prizm Silver PSA 10 is closing in on $150, and a playoff run with San Francisco could be exactly what his market needs to hold steady after last week’s total revival. Injuries are still a concern, so any appearances on the injury report should be monitored closely.
DOLLAR GROWTH DECLINERS
1. Justin Herbert 2020 Optic Holo PSA 10 📉 $200
2. Barry Sanders 1989 Score Base PSA 10 📉 $188
3. Lamar Jackson 2018 Prizm Base PSA 10 📉 $167
4. Justin Herbert 2020 Prizm Disco PSA 10 📉 $162
WILL HERBERT’S MARKET RECOVER THIS SEASON? Justin Herbert’s card market just keeps dipping. As expected, some of his more short-printed cards appear here due to a higher starting price point, but most of his signature Base lineup is down, too. Herbert’s PSA 10s tracked by Market Movers are down 22% collectively over the last 30 days, and his key rookies from Prizm, Optic, Select and Donruss have all dipped badly over the last month.
If you examine Herbert over the last year his prices seem even worse — once at a high of $749, his 2020 Prizm Base PSA 10 is now down to around $170 — and it might be hard with the overall ultra-modern football market trending down. The Market Pulse Index for Football 2018-2020 is down 14% collectively over the last 30 days and 28% over the last year, so Herbert’s market would need a serious reversal to get positive.
Some injury concerns have certainly impacted Herbert’s cards, but looking ahead things might be tough. Herbert has already put up MVP-level stats, so the next step is some playoff success, and a 4-3 record with upcoming showdowns against the Chiefs, 49ers, Rams and Dolphins could make getting to the playoffs at all extremely difficult.
SALES VOLUME LEADERS
1. Josh Allen 2018 Donruss Base PSA 10 📈 199 sales
2. Justin Herbert 2020 Absolute Base PSA 10 📈 127 sales
3. Trevor Lawrence Donruss Base PSA 10 📈 123 sales
4. Saquon Barkley 2018 Donruss Base PSA 10 📈 117 sales
5. Justin Herbert 2020 Donruss Base PSA 10 📈 110 sales
POPULAR SEALED WAX (HOBBY BOXES WITH MIN. 10 SALES OVER LAST 30 DAYS)
1. 2022 Score Football 📉 7%
2. 2022 Gold Standard Football 📉 4%
3. 2022 Legacy Football 📈 20%
4. 2022 Elite Football 📉 15%
5. 2022 Luminance Football 📈 11%
MARKET PULSE INDEXES OVER LAST 30 DAYS
Football 2018-2020: 📉 14%
- KEY RISER: Josh Allen 2018 Prizm Base PSA 10 📈 11%
- KEY DECLINER: Lamar Jackson 2018 Prizm Base PSA 10 📉 41%
Football 2010-2017: 📉 13%
- KEY RISER: Christian McCaffrey 2017 Prizm Silver PSA 10 📈 130%
- KEY DECLINER: Patrick Mahomes 2017 Prizm Silver PSA 10 📉 20%
Football 2000-2009: 📉 17%
- KEY RISER: Philip Rivers 2004 Topps Base PSA 10 📈 5%
- KEY DECLINER: Tom Brady 2000 Bowman Chrome Base PSA 10 📉 26%
Football 1990-1999: 📉 1%
- KEY RISER: Peyton Manning 1998 Topps Chrome Base PSA 10 📈 15%
- KEY DECLINER: Warren Sapp 1995 SP Base PSA 10 📉 44%
Football 1980-1989: 📉 8%
- KEY RISER: Lawrence Taylor 1982 Topps Base PSA 10 📈 8%
- KEY DECLINER: Eric Dickerson 1984 Topps Base PSA 10 📉 10%
Football 1979 & Older: 📉 1%
- KEY RISER: Frank Tarkenton 1962 Topps Base PSA 7 📈 15%
- KEY DECLINER: Bob Griese 1968 Topps Base PSA 8 📉 24%
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