Dick Butkus was a linebacker for the Chicago Bears for nine seasons, during which his nasty, brutal play would garner much praise, and lead many to consider him as one of the greatest defensive players of all time. High priced football cards are usually of offensive stars, who smashed records and led their respective teams to countless Super Bowl victories. The 1966 Philadelphia Dick Butkus rookie card is one of the most valuable and desired cards of any defensive player in NFL history. The '66 Philly gum football set was one of just four produced by the company. His still legendary status makes the Butkus rookie card a solid investment.
Because high grade examples are very rare, they often bring strong prices. In 2008, one of the five Butkus rookie cards that have been graded at PSA 9 sold at auction for over $11,000. The relative scarcity of this card, however, contributed heavily to the high price because anyone who wanted to own the extremely rare card would have had to pay outlandishly high prices to own it. As of late 2012, there were fewer than 200 graded at both PSA 6 and PSA 7. They usually in the neighborhood of $400 and $200, respectively. For a defensive player, however, these prices are quite high.
This card presents a very strong investment for many reasons. It is unique in that it is one of the most popular cards of any defensive player in NFL history. The 1966 Philadelphia Dick Butkus rookie card represents one of the NFL's hallmark players as a raw rookie out of Illinois. Printed just prior to the start of his second season, it can be considered one of the top five football rookie cards of the 1960s and isn't likely to lose value over the long term.