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 NflPeyton Manning/joseph Addai Autographed Full Size Colts/super Bowl Xli HelmetSuperbowl Ii Two 2 Program Packers Raiders Signed Starr Nitscke Blanda & Others2001 2003 2004 2014 New England Patriots Super Bowl Champions 14" Banner SetOfficial Game Coin Limited Edition Super Bowl Xlix Patriots Seahawks In Case #1Superbowl 1 One Program Packers, Chiefs Signed Autographed Starr,nitschke 22sigsGreen Bay Packers Autographed Aaron Rodgers #12 Superbowl Xlv Jersey Signed CoaRussell Wilson Nfl Jersey. Seattle Seahawks. Size Medium. Super Bowl!Official Game Coin Limited Edition Super Bowl Xlix Patriots Seahawks #22007 Topps Tx Exclusive Super Bowl Ticket Stub Auto Brian DawkinsSan Francisco 49ers 5-time Superbowl Pin Set & 50th Anniversary Coin Set Rare2015 Tom Brady Panini Cracked Ice #/25 Football Patch Super Bowl Card Non AutoRay Lewis Signed Super Bowl Xlvii Duke Football Auto Jsa Sticker Only Ravens1984 Topps John Elway Rookie Rc Sp Denver Broncos Super Bowl Mvp Stanford Mint 1973 Super Bowl Vii Nfl Football Program Miami Dolphins Washington RedskinsSuper Bowl 49 Xlix Silver Ticket 20152015 Panini Father’s Day Tom Brady Road To The Super Bowl Game Used Football Michael Irvin Autographed Jersey Dallas Cowboys Nfl Hof 3x Super Bowl Champ Mvp!Tom Brady 2015 Panini Fathers Day Super Bowl Game Used Pylon Cracked Ice /25Nwt Nike New England Patriots Tom Brady Super Bowl Mvp 12 Tee T-shirt Large2014 Super Bowl Xliv Blake Bortles Auto 4 Col Patch Rc! #bb #'ed 25/25 A 1/1 SspPittsburgh Steelers Dallas Cowboys Super Bowl Xxx Vintage SnapbackJohn Elway 2008 National Treasures Super Bowl Autograph Cuts Auto Sp #/27 $200+Seattle Seahawks Marshawn Lynch Super Bowl On-field Stitched Jersey Large@super Bowl 27 Oakland Raiders Signed Nfl Football Team Autographs Jerry Rice@@ Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl Xlviii Championship Ring 11Tom Brady 2015 Panini Fathers Day Pyramid Road To The Super Bowl Game Used PylonJames Farrior 2007 Topps Tx Super Bowl Xl Ticket Stub Club/suite Level AutoJamie Collins 2015 Panini Fathers Day Cracked Ice Super Bowl Pylon Patriots SpDrew Brees Signed Saints Super Bowl Xliv 16x20 Photo W/inscriptions--le 4/9--udaAndrew Luck 2012 Topps Super Bowl Xlvii Patches Colts Rookie /200 Bgs 9.5Tom Brady Autographed Cap From Superbowl Xxxvl New England Patriots ChampionsAuthentic New Orleans Saints Superbowl Brees Jersey NwotWillabee & Ward Official Nfl Super Bowl I-xlix 1967-2015 Patches & 2 Binders!Super Bowl Xlviii Champions Seattle Seahawks 4877/5000 Official Duke FootballVintage Sf 49ers Large Wool Superbowl Banner Nfl Authentic New NwtNew England Patriots 3-time Super Bowl Champs Gold Coin 24kt Plus Framed PhotoPittsburgh Steelers Super Bowl Champions Football Lists All Super Bowl Wins2014 Panini Select Prizm Blue Mojo Patriots Super Bowl Xlix Set All 52 Cards!Dallas Cowboy's Super Bowl Rings 71,77,92,93,95 Us SellerNfl Super Bowl Xlv 24kt Gold Official Game Coin, Limited EditionTom Brady 2015 Panini Father's Day Road To The Super Bowl Game Used PylonJohnny Manziel 2014 Panini Super Bowl Rc Game Jersey Patch Autograph Auto 24/25Heath Miller 2007 Topps Authentic Super Bowl Xl Ticket Autograph Steelers AutoNwt Nike New England Patriots Tom Brady Super Bowl Mvp 12 Tee T-shirt Xl Nice!John Elway 1997 Bowmans Best Superbowl Xxxii Atomic Refractor Jumbo BroncosStephen Gostkowski 2015 Fathers Day Pylon Super Bowl Xlix PatriotsPittsburgh Steelers Super Bowl Xliii Champions Sports Illustrated Football2015 Panini Father's Day Stephen Gostkowski Patriots Road To Super Bowl Pylon2014 Contenders Super Bowl Ticket Eddie Lacy 1/1 True 1 Of 11969 Super Bowl 3 "new York Jets" Team-signed Jersey! Joe Namath + 25 Autographs2015 Panini Fathers Day Patriots Super Bowl Pylon Relic Lot Of 6 Brady1997 Green Bay Packers Riddell Replica Full Sized Super Bowl Xxxi Packers 35-21Wilson Super Bowl Xlviii (48) Official Game Football-seahawks Super Bowl Vii Media Guide Washington Redskins Nfl Football 1973 & Pro! 1972 NrIndianapolis Colts Football Super Bowl Xli Beer Mug / Stein Redskins Kansas John Riggins Signed 2 Card 1983 Lot Super Bowl Nfc ChampionshipSeattle Seahawks Super Bowl Ring Russell Wilson Size 142015 Panini Father's Day Devin Mccourty Cracked Ice Super Bowl Pylon CardWashington Redskins Small Super Bowl Champions Mini Football Helmet Lot (3)