Topps Football Cards to Collect
Each week during the first month of the 2023-2024 season, we’re tackling a different division in football to uncover the top cards of the top players who represent the best of their franchises. So slide into the NFC West time machine, where the 49ers’ golden moments tangle with the Seahawks’ thunder, the Cardinals’ ageless flights, and the Rams’ electric charges. Let’s rewind the reel and sift through the stacks to hunt for those legendary trading cards. Let’s venture deep into the NFC West, where every card has a tale, and every legend lives on.
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Los Angeles Rams
1984 Topps #280 Eric Dickerson RC
The 1984 Topps football set parades the exclusive rookie card of Eric Dickerson, who seems to have thought, “Why not pair rec specs with rushing records?” Those goggles might hint at a library stint rather than gridiron greatness. But Dickerson? He blazed the turf, clocking in three seasons with at least 1,800 rushing yards in his first four campaigns, and holds the distinction as the first player to top 1k rushing yards in seven consecutive seasons. Specs-tacular, isn’t it?
PS: Some would say this is Dickerson’s most valuable card—definitely his most iconic.
2004 Bowman Chrome® #118 Larry Fitzgerald RC X-Fractor /250
The 2004 Bowman Chrome #118 Larry Fitzgerald X-Fractor is a rare rookie card with a print run of 250. Finding defensive backs that could check Fitzgerald was even more scare, with that number being closer to zero. The Cardinals’ great was a model of consistency, totaling nine seasons of at least 1,000 receiving yards and ranking second behind fellow NFC West legend Jerry Rice for most career receptions (1,432) and receiving yards (17,192) in NFL history. Fitzgerald also set marks as the youngest player in to reach 700, 800, 900, and 1,000 receptions, respectively. He’s easily the greatest Cardinals player of all time and was a class act throughout his tenure on the West Side.
San Francisco 49ers
1986 Topps #161 Jerry Rice RC
Choosing between Jerry Rice and Joe Montana was tough, but in the end, we had to select Rice – not solely because of his cameo in Popeyes commercials, but it helped. Rice ate up defensive backs like a five-piece with red beans from the famed, Louisiana-based chicken joint, chewing through secondaries on his way to NFL records for receiving yards (1,549), receiving yards (22,895), and touchdown grabs (197). The 1986 Topps #161 Jerry Rice RC is the three-time Super Bowl champ’s debut—and only—rookie card. Winner Winner, Chicken Dinner!
2012 Topps Five Star #159 Russell Wilson Autographed Patch RC #/50
The chances of owning this “Mr. Unlimited” – aka Russell Wilson card – are, in fact, limited – and limited to only 50. I mean, look at this. You’ve got an on-card auto, swatch, and a print run that makes the card more elusive than Whodini in the pocket. But you know what number’s less than 50? One. And Russ Wilson is the only quarterback to lead Seattle’s football franchise to the ultimate goal of a Super Bowl title.
Baddest in the Game: NFC West Edition
1982 Topps #486 Ronnie Lott RC
Ronnie Lott? More like Ronnie, “I don’t need all ten fingers,” Lott! This Hall of Famer, known for swiping 63 passes from opposing QBs, was so hardcore that when faced with a pesky pinkie injury, he thought, “Who needs it?” and opted for amputation over a lengthy recovery. Combining a no-nonsense style with a dash of “Wait, he did WHAT?”, Lott redefined tenacity in the NFL. Truly, he’s the legend who gave 9.5 fingers out of 10 for the love of the game!
Topps Football Cards to Collect