Cards: Score 2010 Hot Rookies, Adrenaline 2010
Acquired: In Person, 6/10/12, 610 Houston Fan Fest III
See Also: Brandon LaFell
Lafell came out with a Detroit Lions hat on to the event. I was naturally a bit shocked as he is a member of the Carolina Panthers. When I got to the front of the line and asked him he said he was wearing it because it matched his hat. I came through the line a bit later again and got the second card signed. I probably could have gotten a third but I gave the Score 2010 Rookies card away to another fan who did not bring anything of him to the event. Brandon is becoming a bigger and bigger part of the Panthers offense. Of course he is overshadowed by guys like Cam Newton and Deshawn Foster, but his speed and hands are a great asset to this young and upcoming Carolina squad. I was surprised that he was at the event. Late last year I had gotten an autographed rookie box breaker of him that set me on a card buying binge.
These are great cards. Not only do they showcase great design, they are great to get autographed and really portray LaFell in action packed poses. Both of these cards are very original looking. The Adrenaline card goes so far as to post the card number on the front and abandons the traditional mantra of putting the company logo there too. The type is strong, and there is no fade anywhere to be found on these cards near the bottom of the player. While it seems that the card companies are moving away from showcasing the players in front of crowds, I still really like both of these cards. I may need to get a few more Adrenaline autographed later on.
Card: Score 2011
Acquired: 2011 Score Box Breaker
See also: Brandon LaFell (2)
After putting together one of the most productive seasons for LSU in 2008, Brandon LaFell would be drafted by the Carolina Panthers with their 3rd round pick in the 2010 draft. During his rookie season he slowly worked his way into the lineup as a slot receiver, and established a reputation as a solid route runner that is not afraid to block or take a hit in order to make a catch. With deceptive speed and good size, LaFell had to deal with quarterback issues all season long, but still recorded 38 receptions for 468 yards, scoring his first career TD against the Rams on a 17 yard grab. Brandon also displayed some of that speed and took an end around 60 yards against the Falcons in Week 17. With the drafting of Cam Newton by the Panthers in 2011, the team established that consistency at quarterback that it direly needed. For Brandon, after scoring his second and third career touchdowns, he is poised to post career highs in all receiving categories this season.
I bought a cheap box or Score 2011, since they have autographs scattered throughout the boxes, and was happy to find an autograph inside. I did not purchase these cards because of the designs- rather I did so because I was after an autograph, and current players that I wanted. These Score 2011 are stodgy and are disappointing when compared to their 2010 and 2009 offerings. The Score logo is just too large, and the corner cutting by the logo just feels so 80s. I did like the back on these cards, but I frown when the photo utilized is the same from the front. After I got a hit on the first box, I ran out and bought 3 more hobby boxes and got nothing out of them. That’s karma for you. Still I can’t look this gift horse in the mouth and I am happy to have acquired LaFell for my collection.