As we enter the year 2007 we see numerous companies trying to come up with the newest idea on how to authenticate autographs. Sports memorabilia forgeries are at an all-time high, most of which are being sold through eBay. if I spent some time surfing eBay right this moment for New York Jets autographed jerseys, photos, footballs, helmets, etc. I’d stumble across more fake autographs than you can imagine. these forgeries are not only limited to eBay but also at sports memorabilia shows and internet sites everywhere, however most prevalent on eBay because a seller can hide behind an identity.
If you’re paying $500.00 for a hand signed Curtis Martin New York Jets game helmet you want to make sure it’s real, obviously. Curtis Martin is one of, if not the most commonly faked autograph among both current and former New York Jets players. Typically if a price looks too good to be true for an item there is probably something wrong. for example if a seller is offering a Chad Pennington signed 16×20 photo for $49.99 be wary. the seasoned collector knows the prices these types of players garner at a public autograph appearance. if a Joe Namath autograph ticket is $175.00 at a show which isn’t including the actual item to be autographed, how is it a seller can offer you a Joe Namath signed football for $99.99? Even at dealer wholesale price it would be less than cost, the authenticity of this item is to be questioned.
If you are a serious collector of New York Jets autographed memorabilia you know authenticity is paramount. there is nothing worse than looking at one of your most prized possessions in a display case scratching your head wondering if it’s real or not. as any collector has seen over the past 5 years, many players aren’t even signing their name in full signature anymore. many will just sign their initials with their number. This was common in 1998 when Heisman Trophy winner and then current New Orleans Saints running back Ricky Williams was signing his name simply RW 34. Williams was the most sought after autograph in football at the time but with an autograph that almost anyone could fake, forgeries were everywhere.
Perhaps you asking yourself, How can I know for sure the autographed Jets memorabilia I am buying is the real thing? the good news is you can know for sure. first off and most importantly when buying make sure you look for the players own hologram. most of the Jets players like Jerricho Cotchery, Chris Baker, etc. have their own hologram. It should say something like Jerricho Cotchery Authentic. these type of holograms come directly from the player or players marketing agent. normally a company who represents a player exclusively for their autographed memorabilia and public/private signings will have the players hologram on each piece of signed memorabilia they offer. as the Jets continue to become a powerhouse in the league the rise of fake NY Jets memorabilia will continue to grow. a players own hologram is iron-clad authenticity on any item.
Another thing to remember is that a Certificate of Authenticity is only as good as who it comes from. if you know a specific company has had relationships with a certain teams players over time you can have that level of confidence you are looking for when purchasing your investment. if XYZ Sports has been conducting player autograph appearances, private signings and exclusive representation of that teams players over a period of time you should look nowhere else in terms of authenticity of the items offered by that company. New York Jets autographed memorabilia can be a true investment if you follow the guidelines and do your homework before making your purchase.