2021 Panini Illusions Football Preview

Back for a fifth year but with some minor changes, 2021 Panini Illusions Football will mark the brand’s return later this season.  

2021 Panini Illusions Configuration and Base Set

With a current release date of December 1, each Hobby box of Illusions will have ten packs of five cards, with 16 boxes per case.

Illusions Hobby boxes won’t be carrying an encased autograph anymore, but they will still have three autographs, along with two memorabilia cards, five parallels and ten acetate inserts and parallels. That matches the content of the 2020 release.

The base set will again offer 100 cards with a checklist spread across rookies, veterans and some retired stars.

Base card parallels come in the form of Trophy Collection, which come in a rainbow of colors including:

Trophy Collection Bronze – #’d/499
Trophy Collection Pink – #’d/399
Trophy Collection Yellow Diamond – #’d/249
Trophy Collection Light Blue – #’d/149
Trophy Collection Red – #’d/99
Trophy Collection Blue – #’d/75
Trophy Collection Black Ice – #’d/50
Trophy Collection Platinum – #’d/35
Trophy Collection Gold – #’d/25
Trophy Collection Green – #’d/10
Trophy Collection Purple – 1/1

Inserts

Illusions is all in on acetate inserts. You’ll find that type of stock on Illusionists, Shining Stars, Clear Shots, the new
King of Cards, and Mystique inserts.  Holo Heroes are new case hits that bring holographic technology to the mix.  

King of Cards offer several parallels including:

King of Cards Pink – #’d /399
King of Cards Light Blue – #’d /299
King of Cards Red – #’d /149
King of Cards Black – #’d /50
King of Cards Gold – #’d /25
King of Cards Green – #’d /10
King of Cards Purple – 1/1

Trophy Collection Wild Cards are numbered to 25 or less.  They will pair a current player with a past great.

Parallels for those include:

Trophy Collection Division – #’d/10
Trophy Collection Conference – #’d/5
Trophy Collection Super Bowl – one-of-one

Autographs and Autograph Relic Cards

Deja Vu pairs a team’s recent draft pick with one from the past that turned out well. They’ll include memorabilia swatches and several colored parallel versions including:

Déjà Vu Red – max #’d/99
Déjà Vu Blue – max #’d/75
Déjà Vu Black – max #’d/50
Déjà Vu Gold – max #’d/25
Déjà Vu Green – max #’d/10
Déjà Vu Purple – 1/1

The rookie content appears to be extensive with a variety of different subsets featuring members of the 2021 draft class including Rookie Endorsements (hobby exclusive), First Impressions, Rookie Reflections and Rookie Idols, which again pair new draftees with past greats. 

First Impressions will have relic pieces and autographs with parallel versions possible including:

First Impressions Autographed Memorabilia- max #’d/299
First Impressions Autographed Memorabilia Red- max #’d/99
First Impressions Autographed Memorabilia Blue- max #’d/75
First Impressions Autographed Memorabilia Black- max #’d/50
First Impressions Autographed Memorabilia Gold- max #’d/25
First Impressions Autographed Memorabilia Green- max #’d/10
First Impressions Autographed Memorabilia Purple – 1/1

Rookie Reflections will feature 2021 draftees who have something in common.  Each card will have two pieces of memorabilia along with an autograph.  Possible parallels include:

Rookie Reflections Dual Patch Autographs – max #’d/299
Rookie Reflections Dual Patch Autographs Red- max #’d/99
Rookie Reflections Dual Patch Autographs Blue- max #’d/75
Rookie Reflections Dual Patch Autographs Black- max #’d/50
Rookie Reflections Dual Patch Autographs Gold- max #’d/25
Rookie Reflections Dual Patch Autographs Green- max #’d/10
Rookie Reflections Dual Patch Autographs Purple- 1/1

Rookie Idols Dual Memorabilia cards have these parallels in the works:

Rookie Idols Dual Memorabilia Red – max #’d/99
Rookie Idols Dual Memorabilia Blue- max #’d/75
Rookie Idols Dual Memorabilia Black- max #’d/50
Rookie Idols Dual Memorabilia Gold- max #’d/25
Rookie Idols Dual Memorabilia Green- max #’d/10
Rookie Idols Dual Memorabilia Purple- 1/1

Limelight Signatures are focused on current stars with names like Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen expected to be on the checklist.

About Rich Mueller

Rich is the editor and founder of Sports Collectors Daily. A broadcaster and writer for over 35 years and a collector for even longer than that, he’s usually typing something somewhere. Type him back at [email protected]

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