Collecting sports cards continues to be an enjoyable hobby among enthusiastic collectors. Whilst some fans enjoy watching sports, others enjoy owning a piece of history of their favorite players who continue to capture the imaginations of people across the world.
Baseball cards continue to take the top prize for the most valuable, but the other three sports – basketball, hockey, and football, are starting to catch up.
If you’re a fan of football, you know who Tom Brady is. He’s widely regarded as the best quarterback of all time, breaking multiple records and continuing to play at the highest level for the New England Patriots.
Most Valuable Tom Brady Rookie Cards (Round-up list)
At the time of Brady’s rookie season in 2000, he wasn’t even on anyone’s radar as a future star. He was selected 199th overall in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL draft.
During that year, some card manufacturers didn’t even include Brady in their sets. Due to this, his rookie cards are now some of the rarest and most valuable sports cards in existence.
Here are 11 of the most valuable Tom Brady rookie cards currently valued or recently sold at auction.
|Number||Tom Brady Card||Grade||Price|
|1||2000 Playoff Contenders Championship Ticket Autograph Card #144||Beckett Mint 9||$3,107,132|
|2||2000 Fleer Showcase Masterpieces Card #136||Beckett NM-MT 8.5||$396,000|
|3||2000 SP Authentic Autographed Card #118||PSA Gem Mint 10||$360,000|
|4||2000 Bowman Chrome Refractor Card #236||Beckett Gem Mint 9.5||$312,000|
|5||2000 Bowman Gold Refractor Card #236||Beckett Mint 9||$288,000|
|6||2000 Fleer Autographics Gold Card||PSA Gem Mint 10||$210,000|
|7||2000 E-X Essential Credentials Future Card #122||PSA Mint 9||$180,000|
|8||2000 Donruss Elite Status Card #183||PSA Mint 9||$136,521|
|9||2000 SPx Spectrum Tom Brady Rookie Card #130||PSA Gem Mint 10||$121,200|
|10||2000 Leaf Certified Mirror Gold Card #207||Beckett NM-MT 8.5||$90,061|
|11||2000 Playoff Contenders Round Numbers Card #11||Beckett Mint 9||$74,500|
1) 2000 Playoff Contenders Championship Ticket Autograph Card #144
(Sold by Leland’s Auctions in June 2021)
- Price: $3,107,132
- Grade: Beckett Mint 9
- Card Number: #144
In the number one spot is the 2000 Playoff Contenders Championship Ticket Autograph Card #144. This particular Tom Brady card is by far the most popular with collectors. Multiple versions of this card have all sold for over $1 million.
This particular card features Brady in a Patriots jersey looking to throw the football. The Championship Rookie Ticket on the right side of the card lists Brady’s position, number, and rookie year. The back of the card shows Bradys playing stats during his time at college in Michigan.
What makes this card so rare and valuable is that only 100 of these cards exist. This particular card is a parallel of the base set which makes it even more desirable among collectors.
The other main feature determining the value is the autograph condition. At the bottom of the card is Brady’s autograph in a thin black pen that’s been graded as a 10 by Beckett. Brady’s contender series autographs are extremely difficult to find in good condition.
This particular card example was graded by Beckett as Mint 9. Out of 91 cards given to Beckett to grade, only 7 have been given a 9. PSA has graded 13 cards, with only 1 getting a 9.
The card is serial stamped 8/100 and was sold at a Leland’s Auction in June 2021 for $3,107,123.
2) 2000 Fleer Showcase Masterpieces Card #136
(Sold by PWCC Marketplace Auctions in May 2022)
- Price: $396,000
- Grade: Beckett NM-MT 8.5
- Card Number: 1/1
This particular Tom Brady card is unique with an interesting history. Although it is numbered 1/1, a second identical card version was found in April 2022. It was a test card that wasn’t supposed to have been released to the general public. This gave this particular card huge publicity and increased its value.
It features Brady in a Patriots jersey mid-throw about to release the ball. The bottom of the card has his name and team in gold writing and the back of the card displays his playing stats during his college years in Michigan.
The card is from the Fleer Showcase Masters series. The Fleer Showcase series is one of the most highly valued sets among collectors, gaining popularity with other card versions featuring players such as Kobe Bryant.
This particular card example was graded by Beckett as a NM-MT 8.5 and was sold at a PWCC Marketplace auction in May 2022 for $396,000.
3) 2000 SP Authentic Autographed Card #118
(Sold by PWCC Marketplace in October 2021)
- Price: $360,000
- Grade: PSA Gem Mint 10
- Card Number: 1054/1250
At number 3 is the 2000 SP Authentic Autographed Card #118. It shows Brady in a bright red Patriots jersey with the ball in his hand. It features his number ‘12’ in the top right and the ‘SP Authentic’ logo in the top left. The back of the card has a small paragraph about Brady and includes his physical characteristics on the left.
Issued in 2000, the Upper Deck SP Authentic series featured 60 NFL rookies that were each serial numbered to 1250. This particular card example is graded by Beckett as a Pristine 10, which is what makes it so valuable.
Out of 999 graded by Beckett, only 13 have been given a Pristine 10 rating. The card is serial stamped 1054/1250 and was sold at a PWCC Marketplace auction in October 2021 for $360,000.
4) 2000 Bowman Chrome Refractor Card #236
(Sold by PWCC Marketplace in November 2021)
- Price: $312,000
- Grade: Beckett Gem Mint 9.5
- Card Number: #236
Next on my list of the most valuable Tom Brady rookie cards is the 2000 Bowman Chrome Refractor #236. It features Brady mid-throw in his Patriots jersey. At the top left of the card is the ‘2000 Bowman Chrome Rookie Card logo’ and at the bottom is Brady’s name in white. The back of the card has some of Brady’s skills and his college passing records.
This card example is a special Chrome Refractor version of the 270-card base set that was released during Brady’s rookie year. What makes this card so valuable is the condition. Most refractor cards are commonly out of center or have lining issues. This particular card is graded by Beckett as Gem Mint 9.5, with only 1 card known to exist of a higher quality.
It was sold at a PWCC Marketplace auction in November 2021 for £312,000.
5) 2000 Bowman Gold Refractor Card #236
(Sold by Heritage Auctions in November 2021)
- Price: $288,000
- Grade: Beckett Mint 9
- Card Number: #236
A hugely popular card with collectors, mainly due to its visual appeal is the 2000 Bowman Gold Parallel Rookie card #236. It features the same picture as the Chrome Refractor card in my number 4 position but it has a gold border.
The 2000 Bowman Gold rookie cards were limited to just 99 copies with this example numbered 12/99. What makes this card extra special is that this is the same jersey number Brady has worn throughout his entire 22-year career.
It is graded by Beckett as Mint 9, with only 6 other examples known to achieve the same grade. No example of this card has ever been graded higher. It was sold at a Heritage Auction in November 2021 for $288,000.
6) 2000 Fleer Autographics Gold Card
(Sold by PWCC Marketplace in September 2021)
- Price: $210,000
- Grade: PSA Gem Mint 10
- Card Number: 9/50
Next on the list is another card from Fleer, this time it’s part of the Autographics Gold collection. The card features Brady in yellow and white running with the ball. On the right-hand side of the card are the Fleer Autographs and NFL Draft 2000 logos. Underneath is Brady’s autograph in black ink.
This card is from the Fleer Autographics set in which 160-base cards were issued. Alongside the base cards, Fleer released rare gold parallels of rookie players such as Brady. This particular card example is serial stamped 09/50 and has been graded by PSA as a Gem Mint 10, making it highly sought-after among collectors.
It was sold at a PWCC Marketplace Auction in September 2021 for $210,000.
7) 2000 E-X Essential Credentials Future Card #122
(Sold by PWCC Marketplace in March 2022)
- Price: $180,000
- Grade: PSA Mint 9
- Card Number: /25
This next card is another example from Fleer, but hardly ever seen among collectors. It’s from the E-X Essential Credentials Future Fleer series and features a side view of Brady throwing the ball against a patterned blue background.
It has the E-X Rookie logo and ‘Tom Brady Future’ indented in gold writing. On the back of the card is Brady’s physical characteristics and playing stats from his time in Michigan.
What makes this card so valuable is that out of 25 Future Parallels made by Fleer several are missing their reverse serial number, with the serial stamp visible on this card example.
It was graded by PSA as Mint 9 and was sold at a PWCC Marketplace auction in March 2022 for $180,000.
8) 2000 Donruss Elite Status Card #183
(Sold by Leland’s Auctions in September 2021)
- Price: $137,521
- Grade: PSA Mint 9
- Card Number: 10/10
At number 8 is the 2000 Donruss Elite Status Card #183. The main Donruss Elite set is popular with collectors, making this rare insert version a particular favorite.
It features Brady in a Michigan Jersey about to pass the ball and is only 1 of 2 Michigan jersey rookie cards ever made. On the front of the card is the Donruss Elite logo with Brady’s name and position. The back of the card features a paragraph about Brady’s rookie year alongside his physical stats.
Only 10 of these cards were made, with this example serial stamped 10/10 in gold writing. It was graded by PSA as a MINT 9 and sold at a Leland’s auction in September 2021 for £137,521.
9) 2000 SPx Spectrum Tom Brady Rookie #130
(Sold by Goldin Auctions in December 2020)
- Price: $121,200
- Grade: PSA Gem Mint 10
- Card Number: 07/25
One of Brady’s more limited rookie cards is the Upper Deck SPx Spectrum card #130. It shows Brady in a red Patriots uniform with his face superimposed in the background. Underneath his picture are the words ‘Rookie Stars’ in red foil writing.
The SPx Spectrum card series was issued by Upper Deck in boxes containing 18 packs of four cards. Only 25 versions of this particular card were produced, with this one serial stamped 07/25.
It was graded by PSA as Gem Mint 10. Out of 20 cards given to PSA for grading, only three have achieved the same grade, making this card example very rare and valuable.
It was sold at a Goldin Auction in December 2020 for $121,200.
10) 2000 Leaf Certified Mirror Gold #207
(Sold by Leland’s Auctions in November 2021)
- Price: $90,061
- Grade: Beckett NM+MT 8.5
- Card Number: 23/25
The 2000 leaf Certified Mirror Gold card is a rare insert from the Leaf base set issued during Brady’s rookie year. Alongside its rarity, the card is popular with collectors due to its visual appeal.
The front of the card has a blue and yellow holographic background with ‘Mirror Gold’ indented in gold. At the top right of the card is the Leaf 2000 certified logo. The middle of the card features Brady in a red Patriots uniform looking to pass the football.
Only 35 of these cards were made, with this card serial stamped 23/35. It was graded by Beckett as NM-MT 8.5 and was sold at a Leland’s auction in November 2021 for $90,061.
11) 2000 Playoff Contenders Round Numbers #11
(Sold by PWCC Marketplace in February 2022)
- Price: $74,500
- Grade: Beckett 9
- Card Number: 53/60
Last on the list is a rather unique dual card that features Marc Bulger on the front and Tom Brady on the back. It’s part of the 2000 playoff contenders series and was produced to celebrate both players being picked in the 6th round of the 2000 NFL draft.
The ‘Round Number 6’ theme is featured throughout both sides of the card. Both sides have pictures of each player coming through a black circle border. On opposite sides of each circle is the number 6 and the player name and team logo.
The card is serial stamped 53/80 and was graded by Beckett as a Mint 9. It sold at a PWCC Marketplace Auction in February 2022 for $74,500.
Why are Tom Brady Rookie Cards so Expensive?
Tom Brady is an American football quarterback who is widely regarded as the greatest of all time (GOAT). He continues to add to his playing legacy even into his mid-40s, playing for the New England Patriots.
In a glittering career so far, Brady has won the Super Bowl seven times, been voted the Super Bowl MVP five times, and voted the NFL’s most valuable player three times. He continues to break league records, after recently coming out of retirement to keep playing.
As Brady was the 199th overall draft pick, nobody knew the player he would become. Some of the companies producing cards during his rookie season didn’t even bother to include him in their sets. This meant that his rookie cards were produced in very limited quantities or not kept in good condition by fans and collectors.
Now that he’s one of the most well-known and more marketable football players, fans and collectors will pay huge amounts for a slice of history. His rookie cards offer a glimpse into the start of his playing career and continue to break records.
Conclusion – Most Valuable Tom Brady Rookie Cards
Tom Brady’s rookie cards continue to fetch huge prices at auction as he continues to inspire future generations.
He is a unique iconic sports figure, being picked at such a low number in the 2000 NFL draft. This increases the value of his rookie cards exponentially, with limited print runs and poor condition cards just some of the factors that make his rookie cards so valuable.
At the top of the list for the most valuable Tom Brady rookie card is the 2000 Playoff Contenders Championship Rookie Ticket Autograph card. It sold for $3,107,372 at a Lelands auction in April 2021, becoming one of the most valuable sports cards ever to be sold.
How many Tom Brady rookie cards are there?
Tom Brady’s rookie cards were manufactured in 2000 when he made his debut for the New England Patriots.
At that time there were 6 licensed card manufacturers, with some producing his rookie cards. Approximately 44 rookie cards are known to exist and possess different features making them unique.
What determines the value of Tom Brady’s rookie cards?
Whilst most Tom Brady rookie cards are very valuable due to his status as the greatest of all time, factors that influence the value of his rookie cards include:
- Card condition
- Print runs (how many were produced)
- Card brand
- Game day patches