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Panini America Honors Eric LeGrand with Special Card in 2012 Prestige Football

June 27, 2012

When Panini America’s 2012 Prestige Football releases later this week, it will do so packing the first officially licensed Rookie Cards of more than 100 players featured in their NFL uniforms for the first time. But of all the RCs punctuating the product, one in particular is sure to stand out — not necessarily for the money it will fetch on the secondary market but because of the inspirational journey of the player featured on it.

It’s the last card in the set — #301 on the checklist — that honors former Rutgers University football player and honorary Tampa Bay Buccaneer Eric LeGrand.

LeGrand’s gripping, inspirational story has been well documented. Injured while making a tackle against Army on Oct. 16, 2010, LeGrand was left paralyzed from the neck down. Seemingly every day since, he has uplifted others with a contagious smile and a relentless drive to walk again.

Soon after LeGrand’s coach at Rutgers, Greg Schiano, became the new head coach in Tampa Bay, he honored LeGrand by signing him to the Buccaneers’ 90-man offseason roster. It was a poignant, ceremonial signing that spoke volumes about how Schiano, and countless others around the world, feel toward LeGrand.

“This small gesture is the least we could do to recognize his character, spirit and perseverance,” Schiano told ESPN.com. “The way Eric lives his life epitomizes what we are looking for in Buccaneer Men.”

Now, thanks to card #301 in 2012 Prestige Football, those Buccaneer men — and fans and collectors throughout the country — now have another special way to remember LeGrand’s inspirational story.

Sales of LeGrand’s No. 52 Buccaneers jersey will benefit spinal-cord research. For more information, visit the Eric LeGrand Patriot Saint Foundation and the Rutgers University Eric LeGrand Believe Fund homepage.

14 Comments leave one →
  1. Jets Freak! permalink
    June 27, 2012 10:49 am

    Classy Panini! This was a real class act move! Thanks!

  2. The Pit Master permalink
    June 27, 2012 10:50 am

    Well done. Very classy.

  3. Jamey permalink
    June 27, 2012 11:14 am

    It’s a wonderful way of honoring not just LeGrand but every individual, athlete or otherwise, forced to contend with paralysis.

  4. Ryan / (www.raymondberryautographs.com) permalink
    June 27, 2012 11:58 am

    Bravo! LeGrand is an inspiration for how he’s handled this setback. Most people would shrivel into a ball, never to return. Eric has taken this opportunity to make people’s lives better.

  5. Matt Almond permalink
    June 27, 2012 12:01 pm

    Wow truly a fantastic gesture. I wouldn’t expect anything less from the guys at Panini.

  6. June 27, 2012 12:40 pm

    This is great. His attitude is infectious and an inspiration to everybody.

  7. Matt Gilman permalink
    June 27, 2012 1:24 pm

    Great move Panini !

  8. June 27, 2012 4:35 pm

    Great job on this one, he’s a special person and deserves to be highlighted for his perseverance!

  9. June 28, 2012 11:26 am

    Awesome stuff. As a Bucs fan, this is definitely something I will personally be finding a single of for my collection.

  10. Linard permalink
    June 28, 2012 11:53 am

    If this isn’t, i hope you all do an SP of one of his cards. Make it a true chase card. He deserve it.

  11. EC Greenwood permalink
    June 29, 2012 8:57 am

    Put Eric on an HRX video card…hard to convey his personality on cardboard alone!

Trackbacks

  1. Panini America Honors Eric LeGrand with Special Card in 2012 Prestige Football - Blowout Cards Forums
  2. 2012 Prestige Football Stars in This Watch & Win Episode of Pannini Unwrapped « The Official Panini America Blog

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