2023 Donruss Football Preview: A Great Low-End Product For Investing And Ripping

November 1, 2023

Donruss Football is the best Panini paper product every year. Its combination of price point and offering was alluring enough to land it #6 on our list of Top 10 football products. This is also the best hobby box to open with a young collector, too.

But at a $250/box release price, is 2023 Donruss a hold, pass, or perhaps a rip? Let’s look at the numbers. 

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trevor lawrence donruss football 2023

An Introduction to 2023 Donruss Football

Donruss is set to release on December 1st at $250 dollars. Each box contains 18 packs of 10 cards with 1 autograph, 1 memorabilia card, 18 rated rookies 12 parallels, and a variety of base/rookie SPs. 

Perhaps the most attractive thing about this mid-season release is just how many cards you get. 180 is a lot for any hobby box, and an impressive lineup of colored parallels means there’s money to be found in Donruss besides the autographs. 

Here are the cards you can expect to unwrap if you open a box.

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Jordan Addison 2023 Donruss Football

Unpacking 2023 Donruss Football Set 

Donruss is one of the best-looking products we’ve seen for 2023 and the iconic Rated Rookie cards are a timeless classic that ages very well over time… at least, if you know which you should buy. 

Parallels and Inserts

To be completely transparent, Donruss NBA does a lot better than NFL when it comes to parallels. The basketball product has the “laser” parallels, and football has “press proof,” which doesn’t have as much depth. Neither of them photograph exceptionally well, but here are pictures for reference.

Kenny Pickett Donruss

With that said, here’s the list of parallels we can expect to see from 2023 football.

  • Aqueous Test
  • Canvas
  • No Name
  • Stat Line – /500 or less
  • Jersey Number – /99 or less
  • Silver Press Proof – /100
  • Silver Press Proof Die-Cut – /75
  • Gold Press Proof – /50
  • Gold Press Proof Die-Cut – /25
  • Black Press Proof – /10
  • Black Press Proof Die-Cut – 1/1

Case-hit inserts include Gridiron Marvels, Unleashed, and perhaps the hobby’s favorite SSP: Downtown!

Jalen Hurts Downtown

Should you invest in Donruss Football?

Is the 2023 Donruss Football release worth the dice roll? If so, how should you approach it?

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Investing in a box of Football Donruss

Is it a good hold as a sealed product? Considering a $250 release day price, let’s look at how 2023 Donruss football stacks up to years prior.

Here’s the value of the last few years based on recent sales (as of 11/1/2023)

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The story here is the same as usual, basically: the rookie class can dramatically swing the price of a box, and we see it with Donruss more than most products since Donruss has been around for a while. 

If you were to have bought any of the boxes above at the $250 release day price of 2023 Donruss, only 2020 (Herbert, Burrow, Hurts, Jefferson, Tua, etc) and 2017 (Mahomes and McCaffery) would have been years that were worth the investment.

Even 2018 (Josh Allen and Lamar) would have not been profitable enough to make it a good investment. 

So, for that reason alone, I’d warn against investing in this one as a long-term hold. Of course, the sports card market could rise as a whole again, but from the numbers above I don’t think we’re seeing enough from the 2023 class to think they’ll be better than the 2020 class, and that’s what it would take to make this a good investment.

My guess is you can probably grab some Donruss boxes for less than $250 after the price settles a bit. 

Tyreek Hill Unleashed

Investing in singles

If you’re looking to invest in singles, the best cards would be numbered Donruss parallels and rookie autographs. If you can buy raw and get them graded, bonus points for that. 

The rated rookies are great cards, but there are so many of the paper versions that they won’t age well, even the PSA 10s. So buy short prints, autographs, and colored parallels if you want a long-term Donruss hold.

Travis Kelce

Bottom line: Rip, hold or pass?

Donruss Football is a low-end brand that’s a great rip with a young collector, but at $250 dollars per box on release day, it won’t be a great long-term hold. What do you think of this product? What will it be worth in 5 years? Let us know on Twitter @card_lines.

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2023 Donruss Football checklist

Come back to this space when the 2023 Donruss Football checklist is released!