Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow is one of the most collectible players in all sports, and has been a fan favorite ever since breaking multiple college records enroute to the NFL.
He recorded 5,671 yards and 60 TDs to lead LSU to a national championship, while his passer rating of 202 for the season was also a record until it was surpassed by Mac Jones in 2020.
Of course, that means Burrow’s rookie cards are some of the most valuable options within the hobby, so be prepared for some eye-watering prices at the upper end.
Here’s what you need to know about the best Joe Burrow rookie cards to collect.
The Best Joe Burrow Rookie Cards
Joe Burrow rookie cards were released in 2020, while there are over hundreds of options to choose from. We’ve narrowed that down to just 10, with a list packed full of the best ever produced.
10. 2020 Panini Spectra Joe Burrow Rookie Card #136 /99 (eBay)
In a list packed full of rare autos and patches, we thought it was only fair to include at least one viable unsigned Joe Burrow RC. 2020 Spectra is a premium release, while the base card has only 99 copies. Of course, the real value is derived in the rarest parallels.
- Parallels: Hyper #/75, Neon Blue #/60, Neon Blue Die-Cut #/50, Neon Green #/35, Neon Green Die-Cut #/30, Neon Pink #/25, Neon Pink Die-Cut #/20, Neon Orange #/15, Neon Orange Die-Cut #/10, Wave #/10, Psychedelic #/5, Neon Marble #/4, Nebula #/2, Gold 1/1
9. 2020 Panini Encased Joe Burrow RC Auto Hat #101 /50 (eBay)
The 2020 Panini Encased Joe Burrow rookie card found in the Rookie Cap Patch Autographs subset is up next.
The brand isn’t the best known, while cap patches aren’t the most interesting addition to the hobby. Regardless, the on-card auto is complemented by a clean design, as well as a tiny print run. It’s an understated Burrow RC which should definitely be on your radar if you’re interested in high-end options.
- Parallels: Sapphire #/25, Ruby #/15, Gold #/10, Emerald #/5, Diamond 1/1
8. 2020 Panini Contenders Draft Picks Joe Burrow RC Autograph #101 (eBay)
2020 Panini Contenders Draft Picks is next up.
It might be a collegiate release, but it’s still an RC auto that has been signed by the imperious quarterback.
Packed to the brim with numbered parallels, Burrow’s College Ticket might not be as valuable as the NFL Rookie version, but it’s a great entry-level option if you’re looking for a signed card from 2020. As always, expect to pay more for pristine graded versions.
- Parallels: Blue Foil, Green Foil, Cracked Ice #/23, Diamond Ticket #/11, Bowl Ticket #/10, Playoff Ticket #/6, Touchdown Ticket #/6, Building Blocks Ticket #/5, Fame Ticket #/2, Championship Ticket 1/1, Printing Plates Black 1/1, Printing Plates Cyan 1/1, Printing Plates Magenta 1/1, Printing Plates Yellow 1/1
7. 2020 Panini Origins Joe Burrow RC Auto Patch #101 (eBay)
2020 Panini Origins contains a strong option within the Rookie Jumbo Patch Autographs subset. It might be a stickered auto, but it is one of the more affordable signed Burrow cards to make the list. The patch is also reasonably large, but it’s worth mentioning that it’s ‘not from any specific game or event’. You’ll also be able to find the usual range of parallels to chase.
- Parallels: Red #/99, Orange #/75, Blue #/49, Turquoise #/25, Gold #/10, Green #/5, Black 1/1
6. 2020 Panini Flawless Joe Burrow Rookie Card #101 /20 (eBay)
A print run of just 20 is one of the many reasons why the 2020 Panini Flawless Joe Burrow RC is out of reach for most collectors. Don’t let the lack of an autograph put you off, as it’s the rarest Burrow base card that also comes with a handful of parallels to chase. It also has a crisp design, as you’d expect from the premium set.
- Parallels: Sapphire #/10, Diamonds #/7, Emeralds #/5, Aquamarine #/2, Platinum 1/1
5. 2020 Panini Flawless Collegiate Joe Burrow RC Auto Patch #102, 151, 153 /25 (eBay)
Burrow has a trio of different rookies in 2020 Panini Flawless Collegiate. They share a similar design highlighted by an autograph-patch combo, and they all have a print run of just 25.
#102 and #153 feature Burrow winning in his LSU threads while #151 is with Ohio State. All three have proven to be immensely popular with rookie card collectors.
- Parallels: Ruby #/20, Sapphire #/15, Gold #/10, Emerald #/5, Black 1/1, Black Brand Logo 1/1, Black Conference Logo 1/1
4. 2020 Panini Contenders Joe Burrow RC Autograph #101 (eBay)
2020 Panini Contenders Football is where you’ll find the ever-popular Rookie Ticket subset.
It follows a traditional RT design, with lots of parallels accompanied by a serial numbered auto. The Cracked Ice parallel is worth checking out, especially as there were only 22 copies of this Joe Burrow rookie card produced. The Contenders RC was always going to be a major hit with fans, but that has translated to higher sale prices in the here and now.
- Parallels: Clear Ticket Mosaic, Red Zone, Playoff Ticket #/99, Wild Card #/50, Championship Ticket #/49, Cracked Ice #/22, Clear Ticket #/10, Ticket Stub #/9, Printing Plates Black 1/1, Printing Plates Cyan 1/1, Printing Plates Magenta 1/1, Printing Plates Yellow 1/1, Super Bowl Ticket 1/1
3. 2020 Panini Impeccable Joe Burrow RC Auto Helmet-Patch #101 /75 (eBay)
One of a number of valuable Burrow NFL rookie cards found in 2020 Panini Impeccable Football, the #101 has two different swatches laid next to each other vertically.
The first is a standard patch, while the second comes from a helmet. It offers something a bit different compared to the average signed Burrow card, while the auto is of the on-card variety.
- Parallels: Helmet and Nameplate #/35, Silver #/19, Helmet and Glove #/15, Helmet and Team Logo #/10, Helmet and Football #/5, Dual NFL Logo 1/1
2. 2020 Immaculate Collection Joe Burrow RC Auto Patch #101 /99 (eBay)
The 2020 Immaculate Collection contains a strong Joe Burrow auto patch which nearly takes the top spot on this list.
The Immaculate Collection RPA offers a small patch and on-card autograph as well as a main print run of just 99 copies. It’s a premium release that comes with a handful of parallels which are similarly scarce. The acetate finish also gives it more of a unique look and feel.
- Parallels: Gold #/25, Premium Edition #/14, NFL Shield 1/1, Platinum 1/1
1. 2020 Panini National Treasures Joe Burrow RC Auto Patch #156 /99 (eBay)
National Treasures is where you’ll find the Joe Burrow RC which takes the top spot on this list. A high-end card with a luxury look and feel, the base version is limited to 99 copies. It has long been seen as the go-to set for high-end rookie card collectors.
As always, this is evidenced by exceptionally high resale values. We think it could break sales records in the future, depending on Burrow’s next few seasons.
- Parallels: Holo Silver #/25, Midnight #/20, Stars and Stripes #/20, Holo Gold #/10, Green Jersey Number #/9, Black #/5, Hidden Treasure #/5, Stars and Stripes Premium #/3, Red Brand Logo #/2, Platinum NFL Shield 1/1, Printing Plates Black 1/1, Printing Plates Cyan 1/1, Printing Plates Magenta 1/1, Printing Plates Yellow 1/1, Red 1/1, Red Laundry Tag 1/1
Joe Burrow Rookie Cards: Buyers Guide
What does the market look like for the best Joe Burrow rookie cards? One thing is for sure; the rarest options are exceptionally valuable.
As they were printed in such high numbers, many base Joe Burrow rookie cards are highly affordable. Of course, we don’t expect the value to increase by much for base copies, especially compared to the rare cards listed above. (There are also hundreds of other 2020 inserts, parallels, autographs and memorabilia cards which didn’t make the list.)
The National Treasures card has to be the one to collect, although it’s going to be out of reach for the average collector. As of now, rarer parallels will sell for more than a new Tesla.
Joe Burrow Rookie Cards: Final Thoughts
Joe Burrow rookie cards were undoubtedly the one to chase in 2020 football sets, and they’ve held value especially well considering they haven’t been out for long.
Top options can easily sell for six figures, which goes to show just how much faith investors and collectors have in his abilities.
In 2022, Burrow was named Comeback Player of the Year at the NFL Honors show. The 25-year-old won the award after he led Cincinnati to their third Super Bowl appearance despite suffering a torn left ACL and MCL last season.
The steep prices of Burrow rookie cards will give some collectors pause for thought, but the hype is as strong as it’s ever been.