Product Highlight: 1995 Taco John’s Iowa Barnstormers AFL Team Set

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Arena Football has it’s following.  You wouldn’t know that based on the lack of sales for the small amount of AFL cards out there.  Upper Deck gave it a shot, but unless you pull an autograph of Mike Ditka or Jay Gruden that box probably won’t be too rewarding.  Sealed boxes of AFL cards can be found for next to nothing.

In 1995, the Iowa Barnstormers played their inaugural season with a young quarterback on their roster named Kurt Warner.  After being released from the Packers in 1994, Warner turned to the AFL since no other NFL teams seemed that interested in signing him.  He played with the Barnstormers for three seasons before heading over to Europe, and then eventually found his way to the St. Louis Rams.  The rest is all history as this summer he will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Leave it to the Iowa Barnstormers and a Mexican fast-food franchise called Taco John’s to produce what is likely the most valuable AFL card ever printed.  Taco John’s sponsored the team’s first set.  You could obtain these cards in two different ways.  First was to purchase an entire team set directly from the Iowa Barnstormers.  The second way would’ve taken much longer.  For each week of the AFL season, participating Taco John’s restaurants would give out two different cards from the set with a purchase.

The entire set consists of (42) cards.  Kurt Warner is the most notable one of the bunch.  Its his first football card.  Die-hard fans have been known to spend $200+ for one.  You’ll also find cards of him in their 1996 and 1997 team sets.  Those carry some weight too, selling for $60 a piece.

I wonder how many Kurt Warner cards found their way into the trash when it was Taco John’s week to giveaway this card?

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One Response

  1. I grew up in southern Iowa. Kurt and teammate signed cards from this set for me when I was 10 or 11. Still have them. Great memories.

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