Topps Mayo is full of Funk

It appears that one of the nicest-looking football products in a long time has officially bombed thanks to a boatload of missing autographs featured in the official sell sheet months back. Below is a list of some of the autographs that did not make the cut for release and the ones that actually did.


Steve Young, Joe Montana, Dan Marino, Deion Sanders, Lawrence Taylor, Tom Brady, Adrian Peterson, Mark Twain (cut), William Rockefeller (cut), Joe Paterno, William Shatner, and Mike Rowe.



Let me just start off by admitting that at one point in my life I was an avid Hip-Hop junkie. Even when I loved Hip-Hop, I considered Funkmaster Flex to be the most God-awful annoying D.J in the business.

First, imagine a perfect rap song… as an example, I give you ‘Last Dayz’ by Onyx. Now imagine an obnoxious troll with a teenage girl’s voice constantly screaming over the track. That is Funkmaster Flex’s job.

What worries me about this situation is that it might change the way Topps distributes information on new products. I know of at least one Wax Heaven reader who bought an entire case of this product while another who was dying for the Joe Paterno certified signature (link).

An apology goes out to anyone who decided to purchase Mayo after reading the Wax Heaven preview. From now on I will be more careful with reporting on future products  and will include a disclaimer about the possibility of checklists changing before the release date.

At a time when all hell has broken loose in the Hobby, it’s not a time to deceive people and/or fail to deliver what was advertised. I hope that Topps releases a statement soon to at least ease those collectors who are not just upset but infuriated with this collecting “switch & bait”.


  1. yeah i remember looking at the sell sheet for 08 finest baseball and the main card was an arod auto, which as far as i know was never produced.

  2. Mario-

    I posted the extensive cuts and additions yesterday in the afternoon. From my compilation, I believe that you have two errors (just an editorial thing).

    Mark Twain and William Rockefeller are actually “new” additions to the auto list and are included in the release.

    They were not on the original list but guys like E.E. Cummings, Norman Rockwell, and Rockne were.

    Here is the link:

  3. I’ll just paste the comment that I left on Holy Hitter’s post on SCU:

    Holy crap – so there is no actual Joe Paterno auto??? That explains why I haven’t been able to find it on eBay. My dreams of owning that awesome card are now dashed. What a horribly shitty thing to do to collectors. There are some huge names on that list that aren’t in the actual product. I guarantee you that there are hundreds, maybe thousands, of collectors, who bought boxes and cases of Mayo because of that pre-release autograph checklist. This is absolutely pathetic and inexcusable…

  4. I’ll agree that it’s lousy news for the lottery ticket buyers people who were hoping to pull the non-existent autographs, but maybe this will be good news for the people who actually wanted to collect the set.

    I do think card companies should be held accountable for what’s on their sell sheets and shouldn’t include people on an autograph checklist until they’ve secured the cut signatures or a contract for the person to sign the cards/stickers that will be used.

  5. Topps really fucked the pooch on this one. There will be hell to pay by collectors. First they short the production, now they don’t deliver on the autographs. Not good for the collector, not good for the industry. I sure hope that this is not a sign of things to come.

  6. This whole thing just boggles my mind. How the hell can you release a sell sheet to stores & distributors that says 2 autos or 1 auto & 1 relic per box, and then not even come anywhere friggin close to that?! I’ve seen 6 or 7 boxes busted that yielded ZERO autographs. The pre-sell price of these boxes went from $65 to $110 in the course of a week based on that very sell sheet info. Like Mario said, in the wake of all the NBA garbage, and 08 Sterling being cancelled, and the current state of economic affairs, this is not the time to endear your self to your customers by giving them a GIANT middle finger on a highly anticipated product.

    By the way – Not trying to start a flame war here, but did anybody else find it funny that Harris (Topps biggest antagonist last year, and biggest cheerleader so far this year) gave this product a GLOWING review, even though he didn’t get the promised hit ratio in his box either. I’m usually not one to question integrity or ethics, but didn’t he SLAM Topps at every opportunity last year?

  7. I have a question. I understand that things can change from a sell sheet to an actual product. Shit happens. I think we all understand that. But what happened here is mind boggling.

    My question is this: Is this unprecedented? Has anything even close to this ever happened before with another product?

    Also, Why would Topps release this in this state? They had to know that people would be pissed, right? They couldn’t possibly think that people wouldn’t notice/care, right?

    I’m so confused.

  8. Thanks Mario for the update. As “Man on the Street” I think this product will remain unopened for this weeks busts. I also thought some of the pulls from Topps American Heritage, which was released yesterday, were some of the worst I had seen. This week is looking scary for the “Man on the Street”.

    Later All

  9. when it rains in the hobby, it friggin’ pours. I’m SOOOOO glad I turned down the invitation to pre-purchase a case of this crap. I was eye-balling the checklist and was like, “Damn, this looks promising.”

    Fortunately, my eyes were bigger than my wallet & I passed. WHEW!!!

    You know that feeling when you’re at the casino playing blackjack and you’re sitting on 15, but the dealer’s showing a 6? Do you take a hit or fold or do you hope the dealer busts?

    Well, I’ve gotta say that Topps busted BIG TIME on this one.

    I’ll wait a month or two until the price falls to $30-40/box, then I’ll get into it.

  10. I’ve never seen anything like this. They fleeced shop owners and distributors which of course ultimately F’s all the collectors. There are folks paying through the nose now based on misinformation. The out and in list of the autos is much worse than the snapshot above. I expect the worst from these companies, but this is beyond absurd.

  11. This is unacceptable.
    I was really looking forward to buying this product, but I can’t now… just on principle.
    You can’t promise autos from Steve Young, Joe Montana, Dan Marino, Deion Sanders, Lawrence Taylor, Tom Brady, Adrian Peterson and then not deliver ON ANY OF THOSE!
    This is just a half assed effort.

  12. The funniest part about all of this is that I’m sure Topps doesn’t give 2 craps. They already made their $$$ on this product. It’s the distributors, shop owners, and collectors who have gotten scrod.

  13. How come no one is commenting on the actually Funk Flex auto. 1st its f-ing horrible it looks like 81ex signed the damn thing. 2nd how is it not possible to own his auto, he’s still alive and would probably give any fan of his an auto TTM or in person at one of his events. 3rd the whole card scheme looks like a half hearted phoned in version of an allen and ginter card from 2 years ago!

    Lastly, Im now offering a new set from JBob’s cards. Autos include everyone famous dead or alive and every card is a hit. Presells start now autographees subject to change without notice.

  14. Oh and how exactly does Funk fit in with olde time football cards anyway, where’s the cohesiveness in sets anymore?

  15. “did anybody else find it funny that Harris” … “gave this product a GLOWING review, even though he didn’t get the promised hit ratio in his box either”

    Not really, because Chris Harris cares about the cards and not the hits. And the cards themselves are very well done and unique. This bait and switch crap is complete bullshart, but he was reviewing the card set and not the sell sheet.

    That being said, I want my McLovin’ autograph, goddamnit.

  16. Dayf, my problem with Chris’s review is that last year he was all over EVERY gimmick Topps produced. This incident in my opinion is much worse than any gimmick but he still gave Mayo a near-perfect review.

  17. Who is Chris Harris? Did he mention the card condition issues? Setting aside the felony theft issue, I love the design and will chase the set but the combination of price point, condition sensitivity (some of these are damaged out of the pack), and too many parallels for true set builders it’s not close to greatness. Throw in limited autos with only a few good ones, and stupid tokens for the subway on cars of people who have little to do with a subway, not that great.

  18. Dayf, I would LOVE to pull a McLovin auto! Why not do a triple auto with Seth, Evan and McLovin while we’re at it? lol

    I just got off the phone with one of my buddies who pre-ordered 2 cases, and he is BEYOND pissed!!!!!!!

  19. Ahhhh….it’s too easy to get all snarky about this one….let’s just suffice it to say that most people involved in management at Topps and Upper Deck would have a very difficult time getting hired for a similar position at a Fortune 500 company.

    Bad management = major screw-ups!

  20. “Dayf, my problem with Chris’s review is that last year he was all over EVERY gimmick Topps produced. This incident in my opinion is much worse than any gimmick but he still gave Mayo a near-perfect review.”

    Mario, you are correct.

    I like Chris, but he boycotted Topps b/c they didn’t have a Fukudome RC

  21. I’ll cut Chris some slack on this one. Why would he have anything negative to say about something that he got for free? If I got a box of Upper Deck X for free, I’d probably find good things to say about it. It’s MUCH different for collectors who actually forked over $100 or more per box for this. They are the ones who are rightfully pissed off about this!

  22. Yup, the whole point of reviewing product, free or not, is to be objective and impartial. You can’t give a product a good review just because it was free or because you’re afraid of losing your sponsorship.

    Chris was a giant boil on the ass of Topps for almost the entirety of 2008.

    Now that he’s sponsored they make a product that receives one of his best reviews ever?


  23. Chris Harris = Stale Gum.

    Again, Chris reviewed the cards themselves and the box he ripped and not the sell sheet.

    The cards look good. They are solid card stock just like A&G. The pack I got had no damage, but black bordered sets get dings, it’s a fact of life. The photos are hit and miss, but overall they are done well in Topps’ ‘retro’ style with the computer effects to make them look old or something. The design is spot on the original Mayo Cut Plug cards. It is quite literally the Allen & Ginter of Football sets. And let’s face it, the box Chris got was above average. There was a one per box Tom Brady parallel in there and while he didn’t get an auto, he got the Warren Haynes relic and the non-sports subjects are typically short printed and do better on the secondary market than your run of the mill jerseys. Chris was pissed about gimmicks last year, but I didn’t see any in that box. If a Mayo gimmick pops up, I’m sure Chris will bitch about it.

    Now, that being said, Topps should have NEVER put Joe Pa’s face smack dab in the middle of the sell sheet unless they were damn sure he would be in the set. They should have NEVER promised one autograph a box, let alone TWO in some boxes unless they were damn sure they could deliver. The should have NEVER led people on with that bullcrap Excel checklist that was put on the internet and when the set started looking drastically different from what was already out there, they should have updated it or put a checklist on their crappy website. A best it’s a monumental failure to live up to promises and at worst it’s out and out Fraud to try to push an end of year product that wasn’t selling. Topps fucked up bad and they will pay for it in the short term with customer anger. The only silver lining for them is it’s the end of the season and next week people are going to be too excited over the 2009 issues to stay focused on this.

    Topps is the one that fucked up. Don’t turn your anger on Chris because he got a free box from Topps and gave it a good review.

  24. Who’s angry?

    If you look at my earlier comments, I find it, at best coincidental and funny.

    Why’s everybody get so damn serious about cardboard anyway? 🙂

    *laughs, points finger squarely at self*

  25. Holy Poop! I just noticed that Charlie’s icon is Andre Dawson. All this time I thought it was Cecil Fielder.
    I always wondered why anyone would have Cecil.

  26. Is the angry mob dispersed? At least pointed towards Topps’ corporate offices? Good. My work here is done. Now I can go back to posting about Mark Lemke, American Heritage and Target repack crappers on my own blog.

  27. bait and switch . topps owes amyone who spent more that $20 a box. its not even worth that.

  28. bITE BITE BITE the hand that feeds you. I love Mayo for several reasons, now I love it for several less.

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