The Super Bowl is the most watched television event in the United States every year, and some people have even advocated making it a national holiday. For football memorabilia collectors, the Super Bowl is also an unparalleled spectacle for sports collectibles, from programs and ticket stubs to pennants and lapel pins.

The first Super Bowl was played in 1967 between the NFL’s Green Bay Packers and the AFL’s Kansas City Chiefs. At the time, the contest was not known as the Super Bowl, which is why tickets to that first game, which are highly collectible today, bear the words “AFL-NFL World Championship Game.” It was not until after the two leagues merged in 1970 that the Super Bowl brand was attached to the championship game.

The Packers won that first championship game 35-10, asserting the NFL’s superiority over the AFL in front of a sparse crowd. Programs from that game, as well as the second Super Bowl, in which the Packers defeated the Oakland Raiders, are the most collectible Super Bowl programs.

Super Bowl III was quite possibly the most important Super Bowl in shaping the future of the NFL. Joe Namath, the quarterback of the AFL’s New York Jets, who were massive underdogs in the game, brashly guaranteed victory before the game. He delivered, as his Jets beat the NFL’s big, bad Baltimore Colts 16-7. The AFL (which would become the AFC the following year when the two leagues merged) would win 10 of the next 12 Super Bowls after the Jets victory. Namath, who gained a lot of notoriety because of his guarantee, is one of the most collectible players in football history.

Over the next few decades, the Super Bowl grew to become more than just a game—it was also a national and international phenomenon. Music stars sang the national anthem before the game, and everyone from Ella Fitzgerald to Michael Jackson to The Rolling Stones have played a short set at halftime. The most memorable halftime show was undoubtedly the one for 2004’s Super Bowl XXVII, in which Janet Jackson famously had a “wardrobe malfunction.”

On a few occasions, the Super Bowl has helped produce dynasties. Recently it was the New England Patriots; in the ’80s it was the San Francisco 49ers; and in the ’70s it was the Pittsburgh Steelers.

No team, however, commands the same attention from collectors as the early ’90s dynasty of “America’s Team,” the Dallas Cowboys. Throughout the franchise’s history, the Cowboys h...

Other Super Bowl collectibles include jersey patches, pennants, jackets, and pins. Every Super Bowl has its own unique insignia, so some collectors try to accumulate items from every Super Bowl. Others acquire collectibles only when their favorite teams are in the game.

Obviously items from the first few Super Bowls are most prized, but memorabilia from particularly memorable Super Bowls are also desirable—items from Super Bowl XLII in 2008, for example, when the New York Giants upset the undefeated Patriots, are considered more collectible than similar pieces from other contests.

In recent years, Super Bowl organizers have capitalized on the allure of the game by producing scores of souvenirs—from seat cushions to mini footballs—as well as endless articles of clothing. For fans of a beloved Super Bowl champion, even these artifacts are of interest.

After a Super Bowl, a second wave of items—commemorative shirts, plaques, rings, and signs—are created to honor the victorious team. These are often must-haves for diehard fans. But a major problem with Super Bowl collectibles is that they are easily reproduced and frequently reissued, which makes both authenticating and dating an item tricky.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Vintage Football Card Gallery

Vintage Football Card Gallery

This great database of pro and collegiate football cards from the 1950s and 1960s offers scanned images of cards fo… [read review or visit site]



Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl Xlviii (48) 32" Embroidered Wool Heritage Banner NflTom Brady New England Patriots Nike 2015 Super Bowl Xlix Media Day Jacket - Xl1/1 Devonta Freeman 2014 Contenders Falcons Rookie Super Bowl Ticket Auto 1/1January 15, 1967 Super Bowl 1 Ticket Packers Vs Chiefs Vince Lombardi Stub IAaron Rodgers #12 Autographed Le Superbowl Xlv Green Bay Packers Jersey Signed2014 New England Patriots Super Bowl Xlix 49 Champions 14" Mini Banner Brady1967 Super Bowl I Ticket Stub Excellent Plus No Reserve!Pittsburgh Steelers Danbury Mint Super Bowl Xl 22kt Gold Complete Set! Rare!Green Bay Packers Autograph Super Bowl Xxxi Champion Helmet 2015 Panini Super Bowl Promo Private Signings Johnny Manziel Jersey Auto #d /25Drew Brees Autographed / Framed Super Bowl Xliv Mvp 8x10 Auto Db HologramOfficial Nfl Super Bowl Xlviii Champion Seattle Seahawks Hat With Velcro StrapNfl 2014 Super Bowl Xlviii 48 Seahawks Broncos Full Ticket Psa 9 Mint Yellow Var2015 Russell Wilson Superbowl Auto 1/1 2001 2003 2004 2014 New England Patriots Super Bowl Champions 14" Banner Set2001 New England Patriots Super Bowl Xxxvi 36 Champions 14" Mini Banner BradySuper Bowl Xlii Collectible Nfl Autographed Football, Wilson NibDrew Brees / Reggie Bush Autographed / Framed Super Bowl Xliv Mvp 8x10 Auto HoloKurt Warner Auto Sgc 88 24/25 Arizona Cardinals Autograph Signed Super Bowl MvpTramon Williams Autographed Signed Green Bay Packers Super Bowl Mini Helmet NflAfl Nfl Championship Football Game Original Ticket 1967 Super Bowl 1 PackersRay Lewis Signed Super Bowl Xlvii Duke Football Auto Jsa Coa Baltimore Ravens2003 Sports Illustrated Si New England Patriots Super Bowl Se Hard CoverNew England Patriots Nike Half Zip Gameday Super Bowl Xlix 49 Pullover Size M2015 Super Bowl Xlix Full Ticket New England Patriots Seattle Seahawks Main GreySuper Bowl Xlix Blue Ticket 2015Super Bowl Xlix Silver Ticket 20152004 Tom Brady Vinatieri Patriots Super Bowl 38 Champions Bobble Head BobbleheadTroy Aikman Signed / Autographed / Framed First Super Bowl 8x10 Photo Uda Auto Michael Strahan Signed/autographed New York Giants 16x20 Super Bowl Photo JsaIn Stock Super Bowl 49 Champions New England Patriots Beach Towel Nfl 30x60 SizeSuper Bowl Xlvii Champions Baltimore Ravens Limited Duke Football 2006/50002001 Sports Illustrated Si New England Patriots Super Bowl Se Hard Cover1969 New York Jets Super Bowl 3 Riddell Suspension Football Helmet Ewbank NamathCustom Seahawks Nike Elite Super Bowl Jersey Original Super Bowl X Program - Steelers Vs. Cowboys - Great Condition!2015 Super Bowl Derek Carr Panini Private Signings Auto 15 Of 251976 Super Bowl X Program Dallas Cowboys Vs Pittsburgh Steelers Nwt New England Patriots Nike Super Bowl 49 Hybrid Media Day 1/2 Zip Jacket XlNwt Nike New England Patriots Super Bowl Xlix Tech Windrunner Jacket Sz L; MediaNew England Patriots Nike Half Zip Gameday Super Bowl Xlix 49 Pullover Size XxlDanbury Mint Kurt Warner The 1999 Nfl And Super Bowl Xxxiv Mvp Statue Nib!!!Bart Starr Super Bowl 1 Packers Plate 1710a The Bradford ExchangeRob Gronkowski 87 Patriots Nike Elite Fadeaway Jersey W/super Bowl Xlix PatchNwt Nfl Team Apparel New England Patriots Super Bowl Champions T-shirt Mens XlSuper Bowl X 10 Magazine Program Pittsburgh Steelers And Dallas Cowboys 1976Jim Taylor Signed 11x14 Green Bay Packers Mud Bowl Eagles Hof Lsu Super Bowl 1Dallas Cowboys Lot 4 Vintage Posters Super Bowl Years!49ers Superbowl Flag2014 Leaf Q Pure On-glass Auto Jerry Rice!! Super Bowl Champ/hall Of Famer 49ers1989 Topps Super Bowl Xxiii Joe Montana Back To Pass 49ers Hof Psa 10 Gem MintTroy Polamalu Pittsburgh Steelers Bobble Head 2006 Super Bowl Xl Champs Knuckle1967 Green Bay Packers Super Bowl Championship Ring Size 11New Era Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl Champions 9forty Trophy Collection Hat CapTom Brady Tristar Authentic Reebok Autograph Jersey 3 X Super Bowl 12 Of 12Danbury Mint Ny Giants 1986 Super Bowl Linebackers Set New York SuperbowlNwt Nike New England Patriots Super Bowl Xlix Tech Windrunner Jacket Xl; MediaTom Brady Superbowl Xxxvi Autographed Football With Certificate Of Authenticity.James Harrison Pittsburgh Steeler Reebok Home Jersey With Super Bowl 43 Logo NflNew England Patriots Super Bowl Xxxviii Champs Replica Fan Ring Size 10.5 Kraft