If collectors were expecting 1975 Topps football cards to pick up the wild, colored-border challenge laid down by their baseball counterparts earlier in the year … well, they must have been sorely disappointed.

But if they were content to have a sweeping, rah-rah, banner-based design that featured dramatic photos and drew its color from all corners of the card?

Well, then, they were in luck!

1975 Topps football cards unopened wax pack dan fouts

And we’re in luck today, too, because we can always go back and collect this classic set, with its Hall of Fame rookie cards and mega-wattage star power from top to bottom.

But what will it cost to collect the ’75s?

As with every set, the total cost of ownership is driven by the top of the food chain … in particular, these 12 most valuable 1975 Topps football cards, as determined from prices for PSA 8 copies in the PSA Sports Market Report Price Guide.

Hut! Hut!

1975 Topps Lynn Swann Rookie Card (#282)

1975 Topps Lynn Swann

Even though Swann saw action in 12 games in 1974 after the Steelers made him their first-round pick in the NFL Draft that January, there wasn’t a lot of glory for the former USC standout.

The rookie caught just 11 balls for 208 yards and two touchdowns, but he did nab five catches for 77 yards and a touchdown over three postseason games as the Steelers rolled to their first Super Bowl victory.

Over the next several seasons, though, Swann became one of quarterback Terry Bradshaw‘s favorite targets, and his graceful, dramatic catches often overshadowed teammates like John Stallworth.

With four rings and a handful of Pro Bowl and All-Pro selections to his name, Swann made it to the Hall of Fame in 2001.

His long-time work in the broadcasting booth has also helped keep Swann in the public eye, and his 1975 Topps rookie card is an $80 buy in PSA 8.

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1975 Topps Dan Fouts Rookie Card (#367)

1975 Topps Dan Fouts

The Chargers didn’t take Fouts until the third round of the 1973 NFL Draft, and the Oregon product spent a few seasons struggling to find his pro groove.

Early in the 1978 season, though, Don Coryell replaced Tommy Prothro as San Diego’s head coach, and everything changed — for Fouts, for the Chargers, for the NFL.

That fall, Fouts threw a (then) career-high 381 passes for 2999 yards and 24 touchdowns, airing it out to guys like Lydell Mitchell, John Jefferson, and Charlie Joiner.

The next season, Kellen Winslow joined the fold, and the pieces were all in place for the Air Coryell offense to rewrite how offense was played in the NFL.

All of a sudden, it was expected that QBs could toss for 4000 yards and 30 touchdowns, with 5000 not a farfetched notion.

And, though those Chargers never won a Super Bowl, they did put on an awesome, fan-frothing display through the middle 1980s.

For his role as their chief field engineer, Fouts scored a bust in Canton … and this $50 rookie card.

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1975 Topps Bill Van Heusen (#267)

1975 Topps Bill Van Heusen

Van Heusen was at the opposite end of his career from Fouts and Swann, with just two seasons left in front of him as 1975 Topps football cards hit store shelves.

By then, though, he had established himself as something of a legend for the Denver Broncos, splitting his time for seven seasons between catching passes and kicking punts.

Still second on the team’s leader board for punts put in play, Van Heusen checks in here at $40 for PSA 8 copies of his ’75 card.

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1975 Topps Mel Blount Rookie Card (#12)

1975 Topps Mel Blount

Blount was a key member of the Steelers’ defensive backfield as they pushed to a Super Bowl title in 1974.

But the Pittsburgh cornerback broke out on a personal level in 1975, grabbing 11 interceptions and returning them for 121 yards.

Blount would never reach those heights again, but he did pick off six passes three more times in a career that stretched to 1983 and landed him a spot in Canton.

Today, Blount’s rookie card is a $30 buy in PSA 8 condition.

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1975 Topps Joe Theismann Rookie Card (#416)

1975 Topps Joe Theismann

Even though he hailed from Notre Dame and made it to the list of Heisman finalists in 1970, Theismann fell to the Miami Dolphins in the fourth round of the 1971 NFL Draft.

After a contract squabble with the Fins, though, Theismann signed with the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League.

Theismann thrived north of the border, becoming an all-star in 1971 and 1973, which prompted the Washington Redskins to go after his NFL rights in 1974.

The ‘Skins succeeded in prying the still-young quarterback from Miami, and Theismann made his NFL debut that fall.

Eight years later, he led Washington to a Super Bowl title in a strike-shortened season and had them in the playoff hunt nearly every year.

A popular broadcaster once his playing career was done, Theismann lines up here with a $25 rookie card.

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1975 Topps Willie Alexander (#139)

1975 Topps Willie Alexander

Alexander lasted until the sixth round of the 1971 NFL Draft, but he had forced his way into the Houston Oilers’ starting lineup a month into the new season.

He didn’t let go of that spot until 1979, and developed into a star-level cornerback in the interim.

Over nine seasons with the Oilers, Alexander picked off 23 passes and returned one for a touchdown.

Alexander’s 1975 Topps card is a $20 buy in PSA 8.

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1975 Topps Roger Staubach (#145)

1975 Topps Roger Staubach

Staubach was already halfway through his relatively short NFL career (thanks to service in the Navy) when this card was issued …

But he was also already a Cowboys legend, having guided the team to a Super Bowl title in 1971. Roger was also regarded as one of the top quarterbacks in The League.

Another ring (in 1977) and Hall of Fame enshrinement (in 1985) lay ahead of Staubach when this now-$20 card (in PSA 8) was issued in 1975.

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1975 Topps Cliff Branch Rookie Card (#524)

1975 Topps Cliff Branch

It took Branch a couple of seasons to get on track after the Raiders made him their fourth-round selection in the 1972 NFL Draft.

But, by 1974, the speedy wide receiver had moved on from a special teams assignment to nab a starting slot as one of QB Ken Stabler‘s go-to guys.

That season, Branch grabbed 60 passes for 1091 yards and 13 touchdowns.

Two years later, he’d crack 1000 yards again, and he ended up with 501 catches for 8685 yards and 67 TDs over a 14-year career in Oakland (and Los Angeles).

A Raiders legend, Branch helped Al Davis’ teams nab three Super Bowl titles.

His 1975 Topps rookie card is a $20 buy in slabbed NM-MT condition these days.

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1975 Topps Terry Bradshaw (#461)

1975 Topps Terry Bradshaw

Bradshaw led the Steelers to their first of four titles in 1974, and he was well on his way to a Hall of Fame career.

Back in those days, though, there was a lot of debate about who was the better QB — Bradshaw or Staubach?

Regardless of who had the most talent or was the better leader at any given moment, the overall results fall heavily in Bradshaw’s favor looking back at the era now.

Either way, Bradshaw’s 1975 Topps card is another $20 card in PSA 8.

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1975 Topps O.J. Simpson (#500)

1975 Topps O.J. Simpson

In 1975, the 29-year-old Simpson was smack dab in the middle of a Hall of Fame career, and just a year removed from his most astounding season ever (2003 yards in 1973).

Juice wasn’t done yet, though, as he’d go on to lead the league in rushing in both 1975 and 1976 before tailing off in his 30s.

The former Heisman Trophy winner and Canton denizen checks in here at about $20, regardless of his fall from grace two decades after this pasteboard first saw the light of day.

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1975 Topps Richard Caster (#515)

1975 Topps Richard Caster

Caster spent most of his career as an underrated tight end for the New York Jets, spanning the Joe Namath and Richard Todd eras.

A late-career move to the Houston Oilers didn’t do much for Caster’s visibility, but he did land with the Redskins just in time to nab a ring with the 1982 championship squad.

Caster’s 1975 Topps card pushes $18 in PSA 8 today.

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1975 Topps Rocky Bleier Rookie Card (#39)

1975 Topps Rocky Bleier

Bleier’s story is well-known to most fans these days, but his journey from marginal NFL prospect to Purple Heart hero in Vietnam to a starting role on multiple Steelers championship teams remains inspiring all these decades later.

Though Bleier will likely never make the Hall of Fame cut, the Steelers of the 1970s wouldn’t have been the same without him, and he retains strong collector interest today.

Bleier’s rookie card generally sells in the $20 range when you find it in PSA 8 condition.

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Lynn Swann 1975 Topps Football Rookie Card #282 Pittsburgh Steelers / REPRINT

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