Jon Gruden‘s return to the Oakland Raiders looks to be a pricey one when it comes next week — a mere 10-year contract worth close to $100 million.
One thing the former coach turned analyst turned coach again might not be doing anytime soon after signing that massive deal, though, is signing autographs for card companies — but thankfully for collectors he’s already got a heavy volume of ink out there (at least for a coach) from more than a decade ago if they want one.
In fact, nearly all of his card appearances are certified autographs as coach ink has been a trend at times — at least with some notables — in the past.
All of Gruden’s nearly 30 autos are in a handful of 2004 sets — the Fleer Authentix release that paired coach autos with rookies who got the nod from the franchise is one. He’s got about six different cards there along with coach auto cards in Playoff Contenders, Leaf Limited (a Contenders preview card), SP Authentic, SP Game-Used, SPx Super Scripts, 2004 Sweet Spot Signatures, Ultimate Collection and Upper Deck Finite. Some of those autos group him with other coaches such as Bill Parcells, Jimmy Johnson and Andy Reid.
All of those cards arrived not long after he led the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a Super Bowl XXXVII title over Oakland, which he led for his first four seasons. And since he’s not had autos in any of those years since, there’s some good demand on eBay. Recent sales have been as high as $125 (for the Preview Ticket up top) with a number of them for $40 and up.
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