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Tom Brady

Summary & Career Highlights

Rookie Year: 2000-01

Iconic Rookie Card: 2000 Playoff Contenders Championship Rookie Ticket Autograph /100

Highest Public Sale: 2000 Playoff Contenders Championship Rookie Ticket Autograph /100 BGS 9/10 for $3.1M 

Similar Career Players: Peyton Manning, Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, Brett Favre, Phillip Rivers, Dan Marino

Players with Similar Cards to Check Out: Peyton Manning

Career Highlights

  • 7x Super Bowl Winner (Most in NFL History)

  • 5x Super Bowl MVP (Most in NFL History)

  • 3x NFL MVP (2007, 2010, 2017)

  • 3x All Pro

  • 15x Pro Bowl Selection (Most in NFL History)

  • HOF All 2000's Team

  • HOF All 2010's Team

  • Most Career TD Passes (649)

  • Most Games Won (251)

  • Most Playoff Wins (35)

Iconic Cards

Brady had A LOT of football cards made over his 20-year career giving collectors many different ways to collect. I tend to think of Brady's cards in three buckets: i) Rookie year, ii) The Topps Era, and iii) The Panini Era. We'll be highlighting some key cards from each "Era" but at a high level: 

  • Rookie Year: Any of Brady's cards issued during the 2000-01 season; Generally the most expensive cards of Brady's to collect

  • Topps Era: Any Brady card issued from 2001-2015. While Topps didn't have an exclusive football license during this period, the Topps Chrome and Finest brands were the most popular with collectors. Also look for some Upper Deck products like Ultimate Collection and Exquisite Collection released during this period. 

  • Panini Era: Any Brady card issued after Panini was awarded the exclusive NFL trading card license in 2016 through his 2023 retirement.

Icon Key

Prospective Card Cost:

💰 - Under $250

💰💰- Under $1,000

💰💰💰-  Under $5,000

💰💰💰💰-  Under $15,000

💰💰💰💰💰- Over $15,000


💎 - Common & High Serial Number

💎💎- Serial Numbered or Pop Under 200

💎💎💎 - Serial Numbered or Pop Under 100

💎💎💎💎 - Serial Number or Pop Under 50

💎💎💎💎💎 - Does this card even exist? Serial Number or Pop under 10

2000-01 Bowman Chrome

#236 Refractor
1998 Metal Universe PMG Front
1998 Metal Universe PMG Back

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰💰-💰💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎

About the Card: Long before Tom Brady became the greatest quarterback of all time, he was an obscure 6th-round draft pick. He was certainly not a player card manufacturers would build their brands around. Brady was excluded from most 2000 Topps products, including Topps Chrome and Stadium Club, appearing only in Bowman and Bowman Chrome. His Bowman Chrome rookie card, recognizable in its own right, features a refractor parallel that is exceptionally rare in high grade, making it a a "grail-level" chase for collectors seeking the "best" of Brady’s rookie cards.

2000-01 Fleer Showcase

#136 /2000
1999 Metal Universe PMG Front
1999 Metal Universe PMG Back

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰-💰💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎

About the Card: 2000-01 Fleer Showcase is one of the few sets from Brady's rookie year that features a serial numbered base card. The 160 card set short printed rookies to either 1,000 or 2,000 copies. Visually, it depicts Brady mid-throw overlayed with a set of intense eyes and set against warm background gently fading from yellow to orange. Fleer Showcase catered to higher-end collectors at release and featured two parallel chases - the "Legacy" parallel /20 and a 1/1 Masterpiece.

2000-01 Fleer E-X

#122 /1500
1997 E-X2000 Credentials Front
1997 E-X2000 Credentials Back

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎

About the Card: This is the first "Sweatpants Brady" rookie you'll see, but it won't be the last. Fleer, crafting their checklist for E-X, included Brady but had limited photos available. Ultimately they chose this image where Brady is in his Patriots practice gear - a simple red jersey paired with gray sweatpants from the 2000 Training Camp. Despite the unconventional image, collectors remain undeterred. The base is serial numbered to 1500, provided an attainable yet limited chase, while the "Essential Credentials Future" parallel serial numbered to 25 provided a much more rare pursuit. 

2000-01 Leaf Certified

#207 Mirror Gold /35
1998 E-X2001 Essential Credentials Now Front
1998 E-X2001 Essential Credentials Now Back

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎💎💎

About the Card: The 2000-01 Leaf Certified Mirror Gold /35, one of two gold parallels released during his rookie year, his first gold refractor. Not only is it the first card to feature the popular gold refractor technology, it's also one of Brady's rarest rookie parallels. Despite the Brady practice sweatpants image choice, the card's aesthetics and rarity make it highly desirable amongst collectors. Brady also has a non-numbered Mirror Red parallel, which matches his practice jersey color surprisingly well and is a solid alternative for collector looking for a more attainable chase.

2000-01 Playoff Contenders

#144 Championship Rookie Ticket Autograph /100
1999 E-X Century Essential Credentials Future Front
1999 E-X Century Essential Credentials Future Back

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎💎

About the Card: Given Brady's draft position, it is not surprising that he was featured sparingly in autograph checklists in 2000. When he was featured, it was typically in his University of Michigan uniform. However there was one product that stood alone in featuring Brady autographs in a Patriots jersey, 2000-01 Contenders. Arguably Brady's most iconic cards, the "Rookie Ticket Autograph" and the "Championship Ticket Autograph" /100 parallel, have an important place in telling the story of Brady's cards. At one point, the Championship Ticket Auto was the highest-selling football card of all time

2002-03 Finest

#50 X-Fractor /20
1998 Fleer Brilliants 24-Karat Gold Front
1998 Fleer Brilliants 24-Karat Gold Front

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎💎💎

About the Card: Beyond being the first year Tom Brady was featured in the product, 2002-03 Finest also marked the debut of the X-Fractor parallel. Serial numbered to 20 copies, this is an exceptionally rare card that is almost never publicly sold. This card looks pretty good in photographs, but is exceptional in-hand. Easily one of the most mesmerizing Brady parallels in the entirety of his impressive Finest print run.     

2002-03 Topps

#SBMVP Superbowl Game Used Relic Auto /150
1999 Skybox Premium Star Rubies Front
1999 Skybox Premium Star Rubies Back

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰💰-💰💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎

About the Card: Topps debuted the "Super Bowl MVP Game Used Relic Autograph" in 2000 Topps Football. The card was a simple but powerful concept: To insert a serial numbered relic autograph of the Super Bowl MVP in every year of Topps' flagship product. Brady's 2002 Super Bowl win and MVP nod secured him as the featured player in 2002. Serial numbered to 150, this game-used relic autograph has become one of the most desirable relic autographs in Brady's catalogue. 

2003-04 Topps Chrome

#124 Gold X-Fractor /101

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎

About the Card: Following its successful debut in 2002 Finest, Topps elevated the X-Fractor to another level in 2003 Topps Chrome by introducing the Gold X-Fractor. Serial numbered to 101 copies, the Gold X-Fractor features a distinctive checkerboard refractor design that was an entirely new concept for the era. The parallel has become a chase card for collectors of early 2000s chromium-based football cards. For fans of Brady's 2003 Topps Chrome design, there is also a slightly less rare black refractor parallel, numbered to 599 copies.

2004-05 Ultimate Collection

#USPTB Game Jersey Super Patch /15

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰-💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎

About the Card: In the second year of Ultimate Collection football, Upper Deck introduced the Game Jersey Super Patch. The memorabilia card featured an oversized patch of a game used jersey and is one of the largest early Brady patch cards. Serial numbered to 15 copies, Upper Deck selected high-quality patches that have stood the test of time. 

2011-12 Topps Chrome

#20 Crystal Atomic Refractor /139

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎

About the Card: The crystal atomic refractor card stock has been widely used across manufacturers and has gone by many names (Crystal atomic, cracked ice, sapphire, etc.) since its first appearance in 1998 Bowman's Best. Falling one per hobby box and serial numbered to 139, the crystal atomic refractor was the first card to feature Brady on this card stock. The unique aesthetics and historical significance of this design make it an important and iconic card in Brady's catalogue.

2012-13 National Treasures

#39 Virtuoso Autograph /25

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎💎💎

About the Card: National Treasures debuted in 2012 and was one of Panini's earliest forays into the luxury and high-end space. The 53 card "Virtuoso Signatures" set was one of several autograph sets in the product's release, but it was the only to feature Brady. The minimalist design uses ample white space that gently directs the collector's attention to Brady's retro red Patriots jersey and bold blue autograph.   

2012-13 Prizm

#116 Gold Prizm /10

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎💎💎💎

About the Card: At the time 2012 Prizm was released, the success of the brand was not guaranteed. Collectors saw the sunset of Topps Chrome and Finest and were hesitant to embrace the new exclusive manufacturer with open arms. That would quickly change though and Prizm would become the biggest chromium product in Panini's arsenal. As the inaugural set, Brady's 2012 Prizm and the parallels released are important to modern and ultra-modern collectors. The Gold Prizm /10 was one of three parallels included in the product's first year and the rarest of the bunch.

2014-15 Flawless

#92 Patch Autograph /25

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎💎💎

About the Card: Brady's 2014 Flawless autographs are synonymous with high-end football patch autograph collecting. Aside from his Contenders rookie autographs, his early Panini patch autographs are among his most expensive and sought-after cards. The base version of this card is serial numbered to 25 copies and also comes in a ruby parallel numbered to 15, a gold parallel numbered to 10, an emerald parallel numbered to 5, and a platinum 1/1. Its not a card that will come cheap, but would be a cornerstone to any Brady collection.

2017-18 Prizm

#3 Stained Glass

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎

About the Card: The Stained Glass insert debuted in 2017 Prizm and is one of Brady's more sought after Panini inserts. The base version is Brady's rarest insert in 2017 Prizm and is also available in Gold Mojo /10 and Black Finite /1 parallels. Collectors who appreciate the look and color of the Illumination parallel but would like something a bit more rare may have found their ideal card in Stained Glass. If you appreciate the stained glass motif, also check out Topps' Gallery of Heroes (Multiple sports from 1997 - 2000) and Allen & Ginter Stained Glass minis (Exclusively baseball from 2019 onward).

2018-19 Panini

#TB Kaboom!

Prospective Card Cost: 💰💰💰

Rarity: 💎💎

About the Card: Kabooms were released in 2018 as a multi-sport offering through the Panini Rewards program. The 50 subject checklist features football, basketball, baseball, and soccer's biggest stars and was offered in the base parallel pictured above, a gold parallel numbered to 10, and green 1/1. Kabooms would go on to be case hits in future Panini products and have become of the most popular yet polarizing insert Panini has released. A fun, comic-inspired insert with the potential to collect across years and products.

A Few of My Favorites

There are thousands of Brady cards for collectors to explore. The next 5 cards are some of my favorites: Rookies from iconic and popular brands, the "First" of cool parallels, and a dual auto any Patriots fan would love!

2000-01 SP Authentic

#118 /1250

Why It's a Favorite: 2000 SP Authentic is Upper Deck's "High-end" Brady rookie. The SP Authentic brand is very popular and carries a lot of nostalgia for late 90's and early 2000's collectors. The final 80 rookies on the base checklist were "Future Watch" rookies serial numbered to 1250 copies. Upper Deck, like Fleer, opted to use a Brady practice photo, but that doesn't detract from this card's desirability. This card also landed at number 60 on PWCC's Iconic 100 Cards

2000-01 SPX

#130 /1350

Why It's a Favorite: If you like Brady's SP Authentic rookie, you'll also enjoy his SPX rookie. Similar to SP Authentic, the rookie cards in this checklist were short-printed to 1,350 copies. Brady's SPX rookie features gold foil on the Upper Deck logo and serial numbering, alongside a pixelated-looking card design. SPX also includes the extremely rare "Spectrum" parallel, which is serial numbered to just 25 copies. The Spectrum rookie uses red foil instead of gold, and its 25 copies make it one of Brady's rarest rookies. Collectors can't go wrong with either Brady's SP Authentic or SPX rookie!

2010-11 Topps Chrome

#C80 Red Refractor /25

Why It's a Favorite: Brady has an impressive catalog of Topps Chrome cards from 2002 to 2015, but my favorite design is from 2010. Featuring Brady about to take the snap under center, this unique non-action photo was an excellent choice. The 2010 red refractor, the rarest non-superfractor parallel in the set, matches the Patriots' team colors and pairs really well with the photo chosen. While not as rare as the 2008 Topps Chrome basketball red refractors out of 5, the 25-card print run still offers significant rarity for collectors.

2010-11 Finest

#40 Mosaic Refractor /10

Why It's a Favorite: Following the popularity of the Prizm Mosaic Refractor after its 2013 basketball debut and 2015 football debut, Panini launched it as a standalone product, "Mosaic." Long before Panini was awarded the exclusive NFL trading card license, Topps introduced the first Mosaic Refractor as a part of 2010-11 Finest. Serial-numbered to just 10 copies, this was the rarest Finest parallel, outside of the 1/1 Superfractor. The 2010-11 Finest Mosaic Refractor is a gorgeous card that paved the way for the Mosaics that laid ahead.

2018-19 National Treasures

#8 Synced Signatures Brady/Gronkowski /10

Why It's a Favorite: Things that go together: Peanut butter and jelly, milk and cookies, wine and cheese, Brady and Gronkowski. The tandem formed one of the most prolific QB-TE pairing in NFL history scoring 90 touchdowns together on the Patriots and Buccaneers. Their Synced Signatures Dual autograph from 2018 National Treasures is their first dual on-card autograph together and one of a few ever produced. Excellent image choices for each player and a sleek, minimalist design further emphasize the card's significance.

Honorable Mentions

  • 2000-01 Leaf Rookies & Stars #134

  • 2000-01 Metal #267

  • 2000-01 Playoff Momentum #180

  • 2000-01 SP Authentic #118 Limited /350

  • 2002-03 Topps Chrome #100 Refractor

  • 2002-03 Topps Heritage #HR-TB Real One Autograph

  • 2004-05 Ultimate Collection #TB Autographed Game Jersey /25

  • 2005-06 Finest #105 Gold X-Fractor /10

  • 2006-07 Finest #105 Gold Refractor /49

  • 2011-12 Finest #70 Mosaic Refractor /10

  • 2012-13 Contenders #56 Cracked Ice /20

  • 2014-15 Immaculate Collection #7 Immaculate Moments Auto /25

  • 2017-18 Select #269 Field Level

  • 2018-19 Prizm #SG-1 Stained Glass

  • 2019-20 Panini Flawless #6 Brady/Mahomes Flawless Dual Autographs

  • 2020-21 National Treasures #8 Personalized Treasures Auto /5

  • 2020-21 Panini Prizm #255

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