1952 Bowman Large #16 Frank Gifford Rookie PSA 9 MINT – Only One PSA Example Graded Higher!
GIFFORD MINT ROOKIE!!! One of the premier Frank Gifford rookie cards is this outstanding PSA 9 MINT 1952 Bowman Large #16 offering that has stubbornly defied the past 71 years. One of a mere five PSA examples at this stratospheric plateau, it has only been bested by a single example, with its lofty stature synonymous with Frank Gifford's unparalleled popularity throughout both his playing and post-retirement days. Gifford spent his entire 12-year NFL career with the New York Giants, beginning in 1952, playing both offense and defense. He made eight Pro Bowl appearances and five trips to the NFL Championship Game. Gifford's best season may have been 1956, when he won the league's Most Valuable Player Award and led the Giants to the NFL title over the Chicago Bears. One of the most versatile running backs in NFL history, he was also a flanker, and his pass-receiving prowess was just as lethal to defenses as his formidable ability to run the pigskin. His career statistics truly justify that notion, with Gifford not only rushing for 3,609 yards to the tune of a stellar 4.3 yards per carry but also catching 367 passes for 5,434 yards to the tune of 14.8 yards per reception. He also tallied 77 total touchdowns, displaying an uncanny ability to find the end zone against the finest defenses in the league.
His legacy goes far beyond football, for in his post-retirement career, he became renowned as a television sports commentator, with his 27-year stint as a commentator/analyst for Monday Night Football ably assisting his celebrated status. No wonder collectors are paying excessive price tags for his highly coveted Bowman Large rookie card, with a $50K sale for a PSA 9 marvel in Memory Lane's 2022 Winter Auction setting the tone for this Canton, Ohio inductee's worthy heirloom. Gifford's classic running-the-pigskin pose reveals his legendary #16 jersey, with the Hall of Famer possibly in the midst of scoring another TD. Crystal-clear clarity, brilliant hues, bright white borders and excellent centering all combine to create a breathtaking illustration, with the ultra-sharp edging, pinpoint corners and immaculate surfaces all substantiating the world-class assessment. It's hard to imagine that any 71-year-old football card could possibly retain virtually all of its original factory-issued attributes, let alone one that boasts a captivating Frank Gifford image also utilized on his 1952 Bowman Small subject. Truly withstanding the test of time, it conjures up memories of this New York Giants' resounding skill sets that terrified opposing defenses for 12 years.
Ironically, for all of Gifford's accolades, his most famous play resulted in him being knocked totally unconscious. On November 20, 1960, the Giants were driving for a game-winning touchdown against their arch-rival Philadelphia Eagles. Giants QB George Shaw threw a pass to Gifford at the Eagle's 30-yard line, and as Gifford attempted to get out of bounds to stop the clock, he was absolutely blindsided by 235-pound linebacker Chuck Bednarik, who viciously leveled him, causing a game-ending fumble while Gifford lay unconscious on the field. Directly after the tackle and fumble, Bednarik stood over Gifford, fists clinched, and historically shouted, "This f---ing game is over!" The 30-year-old Gifford had to be carried off on a stretcher, silencing the packed Yankee Stadium. Gifford was diagnosed with a deep concussion that left him in the hospital for 10 days, ultimately shortening his career, which lasted only a few more years. This legendary incident, while not a positive one for the Hall of Famer, is just another example of how Gifford was associated with so many iconic events, justifying why collectors scramble to obtain his exalted 1952 Bowman Large rookie card that is now offered in an unfathomable PSA 9 MINT state!
MIN BID $12,500