Upper Deck Gives New Meaning to the Phrase 'Bonus Baby': Trading Card Company to Give Kids Chance to be NFL Rookie for a Day
Sep 24, 2006

Sweepstakes Winner Will Participate in All Elements of Exclusive L.A. Trading Card Photo Shoot in 2007

CARLSBAD, Calif. (Sept. 24, 2006) -- It's not the guaranteed contract, the Gucci suit or their grandma's tears of joy. For every NFL rookie, there's one thing that tells them they've made it to the big time: their first trading card.

Prior to the season, Upper Deck holds its annual trading card shoot in Los Angeles for these rookies, an exclusive event not open to the public. But next spring, one lucky young fan will not only be invited to witness this unique coming-of-age experience -- they'll be made honorary members of the 2007 NFL rookie class, participating in every element of the shoot, even getting their own special-edition card.

The sweepstakes is called "Collect the Rookies, Play with the Rookies," and is centered around Upper Deck's 2006 Rookie Debut cards, a set already being called the best collection of first-time NFL pros since 1989.

To register to win, fans 17 and under can collect these rookies -- including Reggie Bush, Matt Leinart and Vince Young -- and then enter the code on the back of the card at www.upperdeckkids.com. Each card will also build points toward other prizes, such as iTunes songs, video games and autographed footballs from Upper Deck Authenticated.

Beyond the rookie-for-a-day grand prize, 50 runners up will receive a box of Upper Deck's 2006 Rookie Debut Football cards (MSRP $59.99). The cards go on sale at hobby shops and other retailers starting today.

"Older fans have always had the chance to play in fantasy camps -- hit grounders, shoot hoops, run routes with their all-time sports idols," said Kerri Stockholm, senior marketing director for Upper Deck.

"However, this is an opportunity for these kids to make that lifetime connection early, the chance to say 'I knew him when,'" she continued, "This sweepstakes is an extension of our dedication to growing the next generation of collectors, to get them close to the action, to create a fan of that sport and that athlete for years to come."

Stockholm went on to say that the winner might get more of the rookie experience that expected. "If I were them I'd be ready to sing their alma mater's fight song -- even if they're just in junior high. And, possibly some good-natured duct taping to the goalposts."

More on 2007 Upper Deck, NFL Players Inc. Rookie Premiere Experience
In addition to posing for their own trading card, the winner of Upper Deck's "Collect the Rookies, Play with the Rookies" sweepstakes will also interview a selected group of the 30 invited players for a day-of blog on the company's Web site, giving collectors an insider behind-the-scenes view of the day.

The winner will participate in the shoot by wearing the uniform of their favorite NFL team, with their own personalized name and number stitched on. The jersey will have a small swatch taken from it at the end of the day for insertion into a special-edition game-used card, a limited, one-of-one offering.

In total, the prize includes: airfare and two night deluxe accommodations for winner and a guest; a welcome dinner with all the players; autographs from the athletes, and; the opportunity to play catch with the rookie of their choice.

UD Rookie Debut TV Spot Ad Creative, Ad-Buy Support
Similar to what the company did with its 2006 baseball product -- and using the same tagline, "Get More Than Lucky" -- Upper Deck has created television spots that underline its "Collect the Rookies, Play with the Rookies" sweepstakes.

The 15- and 30-second ads will begin airing this week on Nickelodeon, The Cartoon Network, and on a continuous loop on the Kids Rewards Web site.

In them, five kids are walking across a football field. They can't believe it, the kid directly behind them -- the one with an ear-to-ear grin -- has just traded them the card they wanted for a collection of other cards. "Can you believe he gave me an Manning autograph for Bush, Leinart and Young?!" says one, holding up his card of the Colts quarterback.

The protagonist boy with the rookies knows he traded a great card, but he got three in return that he can now register for the once-in-a-lifetime chance to be a part of Upper Deck's 2007 rookie trading card photo shoot. He got more than lucky with his cards; he traded from packs he originally cracked open from the store to create his own destiny.

Upper Deck's "Lucky" spots were created by Posnick and Kolker, New York, the agency behind the company's entertainment products, including Yu-Gi-Oh! and Vs. System (Marvel).

About the Upper Deck Company
Founded in 1988, The Upper Deck Co. is a premier global sports and entertainment-publishing company that delivers a portfolio of relevant, innovative and multi-dimensional product experiences to collectors, sports and entertainment enthusiasts.


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