John Elway (06/28/60) is a retired quarterback who spent his entire playing career with the Denver Broncos. A multiple record holder, he led the team to two Super Bowls and made nine Pro Bowl appearances over the years.
He later joined the Broncos as their general manager in 2011, taking the team to a third Super Bowl victory, and his first as GM.
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Elway is an undisputed NFL legend, but what are his best rookie cards, and are they worth anything? Here’s everything you need to know about John Elway’s RC options, along with an investment report looking at the next few years.
Top John Elway Rookie Cards
There’s only one John Elway RC, hailing from the 1984 Topps set. We’ve listed another vintage XRC card, as well as a valuable rookie sticker below, so there is some choice to be had.
1984 John Elway Topps Football RC #63 (buy on eBay)
Elway’s only recognized mainstream rookie card, it’s a shame that there isn’t another option available! The 1984 Topps football set had a slightly strange design, with an image of Elway gesturing to somebody off-camera during a game.
There’s a simple white border, but there’s another box inside which is slightly askew. It means that the card isn’t great to look at for extended periods, as you find yourself turning your head diagonally to realign the image.
Regardless, even high PSA grades are relatively affordable, and it’s not like there are many other options for Elway fans.
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1982 John Elway TCMA Oneonta Yankees Baseball #13 (buy on eBay)
This is where it gets interesting. Considered to be an XRC, the 1982 TCMA Oneonta Yankees is a simple black and white card, with a red trim on the border. It was produced after Elway was selected by the New York Yankees in the second round of the 1981 Major League Baseball draft, 52nd overall.
The card features a grainy image of a young Elway on one knee, with a bat loosely held in his hand. It might not be the right sport, but it’s more evidence of Elway’s athletic prowess.
An extremely rare release, it’s actually more expensive than the Topps card listed above. It’s a great investment piece, with a unique story and a strong design.
1984 John Elway Topps Album Stickers #179 (buy on eBay)
With only one real RC to choose from, Elway’s sticker from the 1984 Topps set is another viable option. It features an action shot of the player preparing to make a throw, with a white, yellow, and black border. The sticker number can be seen at the bottom, but otherwise, there are no logos or names to speak of.
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In recent years, prices have begun to creep up, but only for the highest PSA grades.
Elway is a true legend and one of the few men to win a Super Bowl as a player and a GM. With only one RC on the market, you’d think that high PSA grades would be more expensive.
The 1982 TCMA is arguably a better option from an investment perspective, and it does sell for a higher price. It’s somewhat understandable considering the scarcity and the interesting background, although it’s not the best piece for Broncos fans. Or maybe it is, considering it’s his most expensive card overall!
The coach recently turned 60, and still seems to have a true love for the sport. However, he has struggled in recent seasons, despite the introduction of the next generation of stars like Drew Lock, which have helped to buy him time.
They’ll need to see more improvement if Elway wants to keep his role as GM, and the same is true if the team is to have any chance of making it back to the Super Bowl anytime soon. The team was listed at 66-to-1 odds to win Super Bowl LV by a number of respected bookmakers, which shows how much work they have to do.
Either way, the trio listed above could be a good mid-term investment depending on how the 2020 season goes, and they’re only going to get rarer as time goes by.
Investment Rating: Strong Buy
Ownership Disclosure: None