Trader's Retreat - 2 Box Break and Review!
2015 Topps Football and 2015 Topps Apex MLS Soccer
By Jim Van Nest
September 17, 2015

Hello, good people, and welcome back inside the Trader's Retreat. It's been a while, but it looks like Topps is firing on all cylinders again as we have two awesome breaks for you today. We're gonna start you off with some football and then finish off with some futbol!! It's 2015 Topps Football and 2015 Topps Apex MLS Soccer!! So, let's get to the Football!!

2015 Topps Football

Configuration: 36 Packs per Box, 10 Cards per Pack

Set Breakdown
500 Card Base Set - 240 Veterans and 99 Rookies (several players have multiple cards)
Parallels: Gold #/2015, BCA Pink #/499, STS Camo #/399, 60th Anniversary Red Foil #/60, Platinum 1/1, Printing Plates 1/1
100 Base Card Variation Set
76 Base Autograph Set
75 Base Variations Autograph Set
36 Card 1000 Yard Club Insert Set
11 Card 4000 Yard Club Insert Set
38 Card 1963 Topps Mini Rookie Autograph Set - serial numbered
42 Card 1976 Topps Mini Rookie Autograph Set - serial numbered
41 Card 1987 Topps Super Rookie Autograph Set - serial numbered
100 Card 60th Anniversary Set
50 Card 60th Anniversary Autograph Set
50 Card All-Time Fantasy Legends Insert Set
66 Autographs
35 Autographed Relics - serial #'d to 50 or less
50 Card Fantasy Focus Insert Set
26 Card Fantasy Focus Autograph Set
50 Player In The Name Letter Relic Set - all #1/1
20 Card NFL Captains Patch Set
Parallels: STS Camo, Pink
39 Card NFLPA Rookie Premiere Autograph Set
Parallel: Red #/10
5 Card NFLPA Rookie Premiere Dual Autograph Set - #/25
Parallel: Red #/10
2 Card NFLPA Rookie Premiere Quad Autograph Set - #/10
30 Card Past & Present Performers Dual Insert Set
14 Card Presidential Celebration Insert Set
50 Card Relic Set
40 Card Rookie Patch Set
40 Card Rookie Jumbo Relic Set
39 Card Rookie Autographed Jumbo Patch Set - #/50
20 Card Topps Quarterback Fantasy Club Bronze Commemorative Relic Set - #/75
Parallels: Silver #/50, Gold #/25
20 Card Topps Running Back Fantasy Club Bronze Commemorative Relic Set - #/75
Paralells: Silver #/50, Gold #/25
25 Card Topps Wide Receiver Fantasy Club Bronze Commemorative Relic Set - #/75
Parallels: Silver #/50, Gold #/25
60th Anniversary Buybacks Set
Parallels: Red, Blue Silver, Gold #1/1
Road To Victory Promo Set

And here we have it, Football season is really upon us now with the release of Topps flagship product, Topps Football! This year marks the 60th anniversary of Topps Football and they upped the ante on inserts, autos and the base check list.

Base, Variations and Parallels

Sporting a fresh new look and a massive 500 card Base set, Topps Football is in mid-season form before the NFL season has even begun. The first 240 cards in the set are your veterans. The set is littered with outstanding in-game action shots of the best players in the NFL. The back of the cards feature some facts about the player as well as the last two seasons stat lines and a career stat line. Starting with card 241 all the way up to 299, you'll find either Team cards - which highlight a specific team and tell you about their last season and their leaders - or the All Pro cards. These cards recognize all of the players that made the 2014 All-Pro team and will give some information on what got them there.

The next six cards commemorate your Offensive and Defensive players and rookies of the year. There's also an Aaron Rodgers MVP card and a New England Patriots Super Champion card. The next 25 card subset is the Fantasy Studs subset featuring 25 of the best fantasy players in the game. From card 331 to 390, Topps spotlights the top 60 players in the entire NFL. Once we get to card 391, the rookies reign supreme as the next 110 cards feature all of the top rookies in the 2015 draft. The design of all of these subsets of cards remains consistent with the base set - as you can see in the scans above. Each set will, however, feature its own graphic at the bottom of the card. In our box, we pulled 302/500 card base set, or 60%.

The set features at least 40 rookie variations and 60 veteran variations. In our box, we pulled only one variation. As you can see in the scan above, we pulled two versions of card #1 - Aaron Rodgers. The first card is the base card. The card with hands up is the first variation of Card #1. There is actually a second variation of Card # 1 that features Brett Favre rather than Aaron Rodgers. So, not only do you have to look for different photography this year, you also have to look for different players.

Also in every box are an assortment of parallels. First and the most prevalent is Topps flagship staple, Gold Parallels. Always numbered to the year, this year's crop are quite nice looking. We pulled three veteran Golds - AJ Green, Marvin Jones and Joe Haden, while pulling one rookie gold, Justin Hardy of the Atlanta Falcons. And yep, they're all numbered to 2015. We also pulled a nice Darren McFadden BCA Pink parallel. I do like how the pink border really sets off the rest of the card. All pink parallels are numbered to 499. Finally, the slightly more rare STS Camo parallel. In our box, we pulled a Camo parallel of Lions wideout, Golden Tate, numbered 98/399.


As is the norm for the Topps set, regardless of sport, the set is always loaded with sweet inserts. In our box, we pulled examples of six different insert sets, one buyback and one contest card. Let's start with a couple returning insert sets - the 36-card 1000 Yard Club for RBs, TEs and WRs and the 11-card 4000 Yard Club for QBs. Both of these sets are promised at a 1:6 pack clip and both sets were dead on. In our box, we pulled RBs Arian Foster and Alfred Morris, WRs Antonio Brown, Jeremy Maclin and Jordy Nelson and TE Greg Olsen. These cards feature action shots on team color backgrounds and the back of each card features their stats from each game of the 2014 season. The QB set is very similar to the position player set, and the game stats are in tact on the back of the card. In our box, we pulled Matthew Stafford, Philip Rivers, Aaron Rodgers, Eli Manning, Peyton Manning and Ben Roethlisberger.

The next two insert sets are also related and are both promised at a rate of 1:4 packs. They are the All-Time Fantasy Legend set and the Fantasy Focus set. The Legend set features 50 of the greatest Fantasy football performers in the history of the game. Both of these sets are horizontal sets and highlight one specific season for the player on the front. They also offer comparable player performances from history. In our box we pulled Demaryius Thomas, Terry Bradshaw, Phil Simms, Eddie George, Emmitt Smith, John Riggins, Tim Brown, Eric Dickerson and Adrian Peterson. The Fantasy Focus set is very similar, but focuses on Fantasy studs from the 2014 season. IN our box we pulled Tom Brady, CJ Anderson, Peyton Manning, Philip Rivers, AJ Green, Mike Evans, Randall Cobb, DeSean Jackson and DeMarco Murray.

The next insert set is actually my favorite in this season's set. It's the Past and Present Performers set. Each card features a great current NFL player, while the back features a great of the past at the same position for the same team. I like the way this set has the new school look and feel of the current cards for the current players, but the back has a more old school feel in showing off the old school players. In our box we pulled a Roethlisberger/Bradshaw, Polamalu/Woodson, Morris/Riggins, CJ Anderson/Davis, Romo/Staubach and Jeremy Hill/Icky Woods.

The last actual insert set in the box is the 60th Anniversary Set. This 100 card set takes the best of current players and puts them on the card designs of the past. You could call this a mini-Archives set. But where Archives will usually feature three or four years, this set seems to feature a lot more than that. In our box, 10 of the 12 cards we pulled are from different sets. Each card features a nice silver foil 60th Anniversary logo. What I like about this set is you have your all time greats, like Tim Brown, Eric DIckerson, Tony Dorsett and Bo Jackson, as well as current greats like Calvin Johnson, Adrian Peterson, Matt Stafford, Ryan Tannehill and T.Y. Hilton, and then it throws in some rookies as well. We pulled Jameis Winston, Dorial Green-Beckham and Ameer Abdullah. The back of each card lists the player's "Topps 60 Credential."

The last two cards we pulled that I would consider an insert are the Topps 60th Anniversary Buyback card and the New England Patriots Road to Victory card. The Buyback we pulled is a 2010 Roddy White card. This is an actual 2010 card, with a nice foil 60th anniversary stamp on it. The final card is a contest card. It's the Road to Victory card. If the team on your card wins Super Bowl 50, you will receive a Topps 60th Anniversary Gold Parallel Insert set. Up to 150 people will receive this exclusive 100 card sequentially numbered set. Aside from that, all winners will be entered into the Grand Prize drawing to win a complete Autograph set from the 2015 NFLPA Rookie Premiere Class. I have to say, pulling the Patriots version of this card - not a bad shot to win a sweet prize.


We were quite lucky with the hit in our box of 2015 Topps Football. Not only did we pull an autograph, but we pulled a rookie autograph. And even better than that, we pulled a photo variation rookie autograph of Jets Rookie QB Bryce Petty. The sticker auto is dead centered and it features a real nice blue ink signature right in the center of the sticker. In a product that doesn't boast a lot of hits, I'm pretty pleased with the hit we scored in our box.

Final Thoughts on 2015 Topps Football

Priced at a relatively low $52/hobby box, Topps Football is a must have set for any football collector. It doesn't boast a bunch of sexy hits and it doesn't have a bunch of technology. What it has is what collecting used to be and what collecting should be. A way for fans to feel like they own part of the game. A way for dads to pass down the NFL to sons. And oh by the way, while you're doing all that - you're getting an outstanding product. The cards are nice to look at and the insert sets are interesting and well designed as well. Bottom line, if you're a card collector, regardless of sport, the flagship Topps set is a must have for any collector.

If you'd like to see the live break of the box that accompanies this review, well, just click Right Here!


Innovation: 3
Fun: 5
Value: 5
Rebuy: 5

Total– 18/20 - I'd rate 2015 Topps Football an A-!

NPN Information

NPN 2015 Topps Football
PO BOX 763
Pittston, PA 18640

Limit – 1 Request Per Household

Postmarked by: November 25, 2015
Received by: December 2, 2015

For our Canadian collectors, your entry will need to be accompanied by the answer to this skill question: 11 + 9 x 5 – 4 = ?

2015 Topps Apex MLS Soccer

Configuration: 2 Mini Boxes per Box, 32 Cards per Mini Box

Set Breakdown
100 Card Base set
PARALLELS: Green (Retail), Gold #/50, Orange #/25, Red #/5, Black 1/1, Printing Plates 1/1
10 Card Base Variation Set
PARALLELS: Green (Retail), Gold #/50, Orange #/25, Red #/5, Black 1/1, Printing Plates 1/1
48 Card Base Autograph Set
PARALLELS: Green (Retail), Gold #/50, Orange #/25, Red #/5, Black 1/1, Printing Plates 1/1
15 Card Alliances Insert Set
PARALLELS: Green (Retail), Gold #/50, Orange #/25, Red #/5, Black 1/1, Printing Plates 1/1
20 Card Captains Insert Set
PARALLELS: Green (Retail), Gold #/50, Orange #/25, Red #/5, Black 1/1, Printing Plates 1/1
48 Card Crest Jumbo Relic Set - Serial #'d
PARALLELS: Gold #/40, Orange #/25, Red Patch #/5, Black Adidas Logo 1/1, Printing Plates Prime Patch 1/1
15 Card Dual Relics Set
PARALLELS: Red #/5, Black 1/1, Printing Plates 1/1
8 Card Dual Autographs Set
PARALLELS: Red #/5, Black 1/1, Printing Plates 1/1
9 Card Now and Then Autographs Set - Serial #'d
PARALLELS: Red #/5, Black 1/1
21 Card Match Day Die-Cut Autograph Relic Set
PARALLELS: Red #/5, Black 1/1

With the growing popularity of MLS soccer, Topps has added 2015 Apex to its MLS arsenal. Going for a more artistic design, Topps Apex is a fantastic addition to the soccer lineup, featuring two Autographs and one Relic per Box!

Base and Parallels

Smell that? That's the smell of a brand new product hitting the shelves. Topps has made a splash in the MLS and international soccer market and Apex is another notch in the soccer (futbol) belt. I love this set. Topps has gone for a more graphic look in Apex and left the soccer pitch and fans out of the photos. These cards have the players isolated with an explosion of their team colors on the bottom half of the card. The back of each card features a group of facts or stats about the player on the front and really compliments the cool front card design. In our box, we pulled 53 of the 100 card base set. Advanced math tells me that's 53%.

This set does have parallels and in our box(es) we pulled two. We pulled a Gold Michael Parkhurst that is numbered 19/50. On the parallels, the color splash on the bottom of the card is changed to the color of the parallel. So you can see the awesome orange color on our orange parallel of New England Reviolution's Kelyn Rowe parallel #13/25.


There are really only two insert sets in Apex soccer. The first is the Captains insert set. As you can see, we pulled two of the Captains: Chris Wondolowski and Robbie Keane. The back of these cards gives a blurb about the qualities that make these players good captains. The next insert set is the Alliances insert set. We only pulled one of these cards. It's a card of the DC United tandem of goaltender Bill Hamid and defender Bobby Boswell. The back of the card discusses a little of how these two players work together. While not an insert - each mini-box we opened featured an Apex 20% off code card to give you 20% off of value boxes and oversized wall art featuring the Apex designs.


The promised relic card we pulled out of our box is a Crest Jumbo Relic card of Andrew Farrell. This horizontal card, as you can see, features an MLS crest that is half designed in the card and half jersey relic. This card is also #33/50, so it would seem that the relics are all rather short printed. I really like the design of the cards and I like the way the crest itself blends together, despite being made partially of cardboard and jersey material.


And the final two cards in our box (one per mini-box) are our autographs. First up is the base auto of Michael Parkhurst. They've faded out the color and pic at the bottom of the card and attached a sticker auto there. The auto is well centered and almost legible. Our second auto is a parallel auto. It's an orange parallel of Columbus Crew goalkeeper Steve Clark. Like the other oranges, this one is numbered 25/25. Again, a nicely centered neat looking signature adorns the bottom of the card.

Final Thoughts on 2015 Topps Apex MLS Soccer

You can pick up a box of Apex Soccer for the low low price of about $42. That's a awesome price for what you're getting here. One thing I would caution against, is going cheaper and only buying one mini-box. In our box, one mini box had an auto in it. The other mini box had an auto, a relic and two parallels in it. So, if you only buy one mini box - you take the chance of getting the bulk of the booty or very little. So buck up, guys, and buy the whole box. That all being said, these are really nice-looking cards and you do get three hits for your $42. If you're an MLS fan or a soccer fan, you really need to get some Apex into your collection.

If you'd like to see the live break of the box that accompanies this review, well, just click Right Here!


Innovation: 5
Fun: 5
Value: 5
Rebuy: 5

Total– 20/20 - I'd rate 2015 Topps Apex a solid A! Fantastic soccer set!!

NPN Information

NPN 2015 Topps Apex Soccer
PO BOX 2220
Duryea, PA 18642

Limit – 1 Request Per Household

Postmarked by: November 25, 2015
Received by: December 2, 2015

For our Canadian collectors, your entry will need to be accompanied by the answer to this skill question: 5 x 2 + 4 – 1 = ?

Once again, thanks so much to our sponsors at Topps for giving us the opportunity to review these great new products. For more information on all of their products, you can check them out at You can also follow them on Twitter: @toppscards. For all the great new trading card updates coming to BOP, be sure to give me a follow as well: @vannestjc. 'Til next time, take care.