Rookie Card Year: 1966
Investment Rating: 6.5
Gale Sayers was a dynamic running back whose emergence in the NFL ushered in a new era of speed, agility and pass catching from the position. As a result, Gale Sayers football cards and autographed memorabilia remain incredibly popular.
A two-time All-American at Kansas earned him the nickname "the Kansas Comet." Drafted by the Chicago Bears with the fourth overall pick in 1965, hopes were high that Sayers' potent running ability would lead to postseason glory.
Unfortunately for Bears fans, Sayers' career was cut short by injury after just seven seasons. He still managed to accumulate Hall of Fame-worthy numbers and was inducted into the Football Hall of Fame in 1977. His mild manner, compassionate spirit and infectious smile have made him a fan favorite.
The Gale Sayers rookie card is part of the 1966 Philadelphia Football set. He also appears on a second card, #39, which depicts a Bears' offensive play. Sayers can also be found in the 1965 Coke Caps set. In addition to his official rookie card, Sayers' has cards from American Oil and Fortune Shoes from the same year. For completists looking to obtain every early Sayers collectible, he had three more Coke Caps issued in 1966.
The first Gayle Sayers certified autograph card was in 1991 Pro Line Portraits. In 2000, both Donruss/Playoff and Topps issued Sayers' first memorabilia cards. His 2000 Leaf Certified Heritage card is serial numbered to 100 copies. His 2000 Topps Season Opener Super Bowl Memorabilia card is limited to just 5 copies and also has an autograph.
Sayers' autographed memorabilia is plentiful but maintains its value due to tremendous demand from the large Chicago market. His longevity in the spotlight as an ambassador of the game, successful businessman and the subject of the critically acclaimed made-for-TV movie, Brian's Song, has endeared him to even non-football fans. All of these things combine to ensure the values of his autographed memorabilia items.
Gale Sayers Rookie Card
An awesome rookie card, the Philadelphia set is well respected in the hobby. The card pictures Sayers in a classic Heisman pose. The large player image dominates the card's landscape yet still provides an area for vital information at the top.
1970 Football Topps Supers #22 Gale Sayers Bears NRMINT
2006 Leaf Limited #'d 36 50 Legends Insert LL-3 Gale Sayers Bears
1969 TOPPS #51 GALE SAYERS EX C6505
1970 TOPPS #70 GALE SAYERS NM C6517
Gale Sayers Autographed Memorabilia Buying Guide
Below you will find examples of what an authentic Gale Sayers autograph looks like. This can be used as a first point of reference for determining the legitimacy of autograph memorabilia, but is not a substitute for having your items authenticated by a well-respected professional autograph authentication company. Some of the trusted sources within the sports memorabilia market include the following companies: PSA, JSA, Steiner, Tristar and Mounted Memories. Click on any of the images below to view full size photos.
Gale Sayers Cut Signature Exemplar
Gale Sayers Key Signature Attributes: An authentic Gale Sayers signature autograph will exhibit several distinguishing characteristics. Regardless of the type of item or when it was signed, look for the following signature features:
- A very legible and even handed signature written on an even horizontal plane with a pride of penmanship.
- The letter "G" looks like the numeral "9," the pen lifts to start the fully closed "a" "cursive "l" and "e" which is on a slight lean to the right.
- The letter "S" is printed and over-sized, with a large swoop on the top and a much smaller one on the bottom.
- The pen lifts to write the "a" which this time includes a loop allowing him to flow into the "y" which looks like a "u" with a curved vertical line to the right that extends below the horizontal.
- The "e" is pronounced and the "r" is just a simple up/down stroke looking like an upside down "v."
- The "s" is very small, flat and open in nature.
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For general information about Gale Sayers as well as his player statistics, visit: