2021 Panini Obsidian Football Preview

Obsidian is naturally occurring volcanic glass formed when lava cools rapidly with minimal crystal growth.

It’s also become a staple of Panini’s releases across multiple sports. Set for release just before the Super Bowl, 2021 Obsidian football set uses intricate designs, geometric patterns and natural elements to create a colorful product.

Or, as Panini America describes it on its sell sheet, Obsidian “combines sleek black opti-chrome technology with Electric Etched parallels” for “a stunning look.”

It’s a one pack per box product with seven cards in each.  On average, Hobby boxes will contain four autographs or relics, two parallels or inserts, and one base card.


Base set

The base set will feature 100 NFL veteran and 100 rookies.

Electric Etch base parallels will come in eight varieties, with Gold Flood (numbered to 10) making its debut.

Other Electric Etch parallels include Contra, Purple (numbered to 100), Orange (75), Green (50), Yellow (25), Red (10) and Blue Finite (1/1).



Die-cut inserts return for the 2021 set, with Eclipse, Supernova, Tunnel Vision and Vitreous. Tunnel Vision will have short-printed Electric Etch parallels in Contra; Orange, numbered to 35; Green (25), Yellow (10), Red (5) and Blue Finite 1/1.


Color Blast also returns for a second consecutive year.

Autographs and relics

Base Autographs are numbered to 25, while Rookie Autographs are numbered to 150. Rookie Autograph Electric Etch parallels include Orange, numbered to 75; Green (50), Yellow (25), Red (10) and Blue Finite (1/1).

Lightning Strike is scheduled to be a 40-card set that features current and retired stars. Parallels will include Electric Etch versions in Orange (numbered to 75), Green (50), Yellow (25), Red (10) and Blue Finite (1/1).

Rookies and veterans get plenty of play. First-year stars are represented in Rookie Jersey Autographs and Rookie Jersey Ink. Established stars, meanwhile, make their presence known in Matrix Material Autographs.



Both rookie sets have Electric Etch parallels in Orange (numbered up to 99), Green (up to 50), Yellow (up to 25), Red (up to 10) and Blue Finite (1/1).

For Matrix Material Autographs, collectors can find Electric Etch parallels in Orange (numbered to a maximum of 75), Green (up to 50), Yellow (up to 25), Red (up to 10) and Blue Finite (1/1).

Trifecta Material lacks an autograph, but each card has three relics of top NFL stars. Electric Etch parallels can be chased in Orange (up to a maximum of 75), Green (up to 50), Yellow (up to 25), Red (up to 10) and Blue Finite (1/1).

About Bob D’Angelo

Bob has been a sportswriter and copy editor for more than 35 years and a blogger for a decade. He is celebrating his 50th year of card collecting, and still counts his 1965 Topps Mickey Mantle as his favorite. You can reach him at [email protected].

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