APPLETON (NBC 26) — Aaron Rodgers may be leaving Green Bay but a lot of number 12 jerseys, hats, and signed memorabilia still remain.
Employees of one local sports memorabilia company say some of it will only get more valuable now that the future Hall of Famer is gone.
Ryan Sawlsville is a lifelong Packers fan and works for In the Game Autographs & Memorabilia in the Fox River Mall. He says the QB's trade is only going to drive up demand for the autographed Rodgers memorabilia the store carries.
“I think the excitement of being able to get one of those last pieces of Aaron Rodgers memorabilia maybe around is only going to draw that excitement," said Sawlsville.
Sawlsville says it's "very bittersweet" to see Rodgers go after 18 good years in Green Bay, but is still excited about the team's future.
“I can appreciate everything he’s done," Sawlsville said. "[He] brought that Super Bowl to us, but I still think that I can appreciate the excitement and the potential [Jordan] Love is going to bring as a first-round draft pick quarterback as well, and his intangibles and his great potential he has.”
Chris Borkenhagen is a customer service manager with Waukesha Sportscards, which owns In the Game. He says he's already seen a wave of fans trying to snatch up Rodgers' memorabilia.
“We still do extremely well on eBay," he said. "Even Jets fans are starting to purchase Aaron Rodgers stuff regardless if it’s Green Bay Packers stuff or not. They just want to be one of the first in New York to get his stuff signed.”
Borkenhagen says that while the autographed memorabilia his stores carry will hold its value, retail Rodgers gear is poised to take a big hit.
“You know for people that are selling...jerseys that are not autographed...I think that stuff is gonna be cut in half pretty quickly here, just so people can move their inventory," said Borkenhagen.
As for Sawlsville, he believes sales of Rodgers gear will soar again when the QB gets enshrined at Lambeau.
“No matter where he ends his career…he’ll be in the Packers Hall of Fame no doubt…" he said. "I think it’ll make that demand even higher…more exciting for us.”