Johnny Unitas Cards, Rookie Card and Autographed Memorabilia Guide

Johnny Unitas

Date of Birth: 5/7/1933
Rookie Card Year: 1957
Investment Rating: 9.0


Overview

As the face of the early NFL, Johnny Unitas football cards and autographed memorabilia have always been in strong demand. His vintage cards from the Topps sets of the late 1950s and early 1960s are some of the most coveted and valuable cards of the era. His resume defines what it means to be a Hall of Fame player. Unitas was a ten-time Pro Bowl participant, four-time league MVP, and three-time NFL Champion.

Long considered to be one of the greatest quarterbacks of the NFL, Unitas' success on the field and accessible demeanor off the field helped usher in a new era in sports media. As a result, his fame and popularity has translated to the creation of numerous fans and collectors through the years.

The Johnny Unitas rookie card can be found in 1957 Topps Football. The card was double printed but due to smaller overall print runs of the era, the increased availability in no way has hurt the card's value. The demand is strong demand to offset any supply issues. High grade examples can sell for tens of thousands of dollars.

Johnny Unitas' first certified autograph card was part of a food issue set from 1995 Tombstone Pizza and can be difficult to find today. His first mainstream autograph was distributed by Upper Deck as part of the incredibly popular 1997 Upper Deck Legends set.  Unitas' first memorabilia cards were released in 2000 by Donruss, Fleer and Upper Deck. He had a total of seven different memorabilia cards made with each of them ranging in serial numbering from 21 to 400.

Unitas enjoyed a relatively healthy life after his retirement from football and was able to participate in numerous autograph signing appearances. Strong demand and moderate supply have helped ensure solid values for his autographed items with footballs being the most popular.

Johnny Unitas Rookie Card

1957 Topps Football Johnny Unitas RC #138

1957 Topps Johnny Unitas RC

The 1957 Topps Football card set is one of the most cherished of all-time. The colorful backgrounds and dual photographs combine to form an aesthetically pleasing card.

Top eBay Listings

2000 Topps Johnny Unitas Reprint LOT 13 Cards 1957 Rookie Reprint + Colts
$50.00

JOHNNY UNITAS 2001 SP GAME USED JERSEY CARD BALTIMORE COLTS AUTHENTIC FABRIC
$16.50

1972 N.F.L.P.A. Vinyl Stickers Johnny Unitas
$20.00

2008 Icons Football JOHNNY UNITAS Immortal Letterman # 35 88
$29.99

1974 Topps #150 Johnny Unitas Chargers MINT
$14.99

1969 TOPPS #25 VINTAGE CARD OF JOHNNY UNITAS WORTH $50
$17.00

1958 Topps # 110 COLTS TEAM CARD ......NM-MT (OC).....JOHNNY UNITAS.....RF-2700
$58.70

1962 Post Johnny Unitas #90 Colts Very Clean & Sharp Beauty!!
$35.00

JOHNNY UNITAS 1961 Topps #1 nr mint Baltimore Colts HOF John
$14.38

2000 Leaf Certified JOHNNY UNITAS Heritage Collection GU JERSEY 100 HOF COLTS
$79.99

*Rare* 2001 Topps Archives RELICS SEATS #ASJU Johnny Unitas
$39.99

1963 Johnny Unitas Topps Football # 1 Baltimore Colts
$5.68

1962 Johnny Unitas Topps Football # 1 Baltimore Colts
$7.01

1958 Johnny Unitas Topps Football # 22 Baltimore Colts
$5.50

JOHNNY UNITAS AUTOGRAPHED upper deck
$20.00

*Rare* 2000 Topps Chrome Unitas Reprints Refractors #R8 Johnny Unitas 1964
$9.99
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Autograph Guide

Johnny Unitas Autographed Memorabilia Buying Guide

Below you will find examples of what an authentic Johnny Unitas 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.

Johnny Unitas Cut Signature Exemplar

Johnny Unitas Signature Example

Johnny Unitas Key Signature Attributes: An authentic Johnny Unitas signature autograph will exhibit several distinguishing characteristics. Regardless of  the type of item or when it was signed, look for the following signature features:

  1. A very legible and even-handed signature with clear, crisp handwriting and distinguishable letters.
  2. The letter "J" is unique in that while not standard cursive like the rest of the signature it is discernible as a "J" with a short down stroke with a line that extends to the left before forming a small loop that  circles back with a flair to cap the letter.
  3. The pen lifts to star the "o" which is closed, the "h" is small but legible, the "n"'s are similarly written but implied as compared to being pronounced.
  4. The letter "y" is very shallow on the top with a long tail and horizontal finish.
  5. The "U" is wide and deep, with the "n" again being more implied, the "i" is not dotted.
  6. The "t" forms a crossed "l" shape and the "a" and "s" are written but again very small.

Johnny Unitas Signed Football Pricing:

Active Listings for Johnny Unitas Signed Footballs

Johnny Unitas Signed Football

Johnny Unitas Signed Jersey Pricing:

Active Listings for Johnny Unitas Signed Jerseys

Johnny Unitas Signed Jersey

Johnny Unitas Signed Helmet Pricing (Full-size and Mini):

Active Listings for Johnny Unitas Signed Helmets

 

Johnny Unitas Signed Helmet

Johnny Unitas Signed Photograph Pricing:

Active Listings for Johnny Unitas Signed Photographs

Johnny Unitas Signed Photo

 

Top eBay Listings

johnny unitas signed 5 X 7 business index card JSA &unitas figure NIB, A&G card
$39.99

Johnny Unitas Autographed Signed 1994 Ted Williams Co. Card PSA DNA #83717147
$99.00

Johnny Unitas Autographed Signed 1990 Pro Set Super Bowl Card PSA DNA #83717149
$99.00

Johnny Unitas Autographed Signed 1990 Pro Set Super Bowl Card PSA DNA #83717150
$99.00

Johnny Unitas Autographed Signed 1994 Ted Williams Co. Card PSA DNA #83717157
$99.00

JOHNNY UNITAS AUTOGRAPHED SIGNED BALTIMORE COLTS WHITE #19 JERSEY PSA DNA
$1,499.00

JOHNNY UNITAS VINTAGE JSA AUTHENTCATED AUTOGRAPH 4X6 PHOTO SIGNED
$110.00

JOHNNY UNITAS JSA AUTHENTICATED AUTOGRAPH 7X9 VINTAGE PHOTO SIGNED
$115.00

Johnny Unitas Autograph Signed 8 x 10 Photo PSA DNA Baltimore Colts
$144.99

Johnny Unitas Autographed Signed 1991 Domino's QB's Card PSA DNA #83717144
$99.00

JOHNNY UNITAS SIGNED AUTOGRAPHED INSCRIBED "HOF 1979" 16x20 JSA X90288
$751.06

johnny unitas signed wilson football, & HUGE unitas, colts lot JSA full LOA
$399.99

Johnny Unitas signed autographed index card. PSA DNA
$199.00

Johnny Unitas Colts Signed Auto Full Size Rydell Football Helmet PSA DNA Letter
$1,200.00

JOHNNY UNITAS Auto Signed INDEX CARD PSA DNA Slabbed 83373833
$119.99

JOHNNY UNITAS d. 2002 AUTHENTIC SIGNED BUSINESS CARD IN PSA DNA SLABBED HOLDER
$87.00
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More Info
View our detailed guides and articles for more information on Johnny Unitas:

For general information and player statistics visit:


 |  E-Mail Author | 
Rob Bertrand is an avid collector with over 20 years of active experience in the hobby. He is one of the site's most accomplished writers, as well as the co-host of Cardboard Connection Radio. You can follow him on Twitter @VOTC.

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