Leaf Trading Cards took the unprecedented step of filing a lawsuit against NFL receiver CeeDee Lamb for breach of contract over an autograph-signing deal, forcing the Dallas Cowboys star to sign enough autographs to fulfill his contract.
The suit, filed in Denton County, Texas, was believed to mark the first time a trading card company has filed suit against a player for not fulfilling an autograph contract.
According to the suit, Leaf alleged that Lamb did not fulfill his contract to sign trading cards for the company, leaving Leaf “unable to fulfill orders from customers who had received redemption cards that would be exchanged for a card signed by Lamb.”
UPDATE: After news of the lawsuit broke on Tuesday, Leaf announced on Wednesday that Lamb had signed all his required cards, fulfilling his contract.
Leaf CEO Brian Gray said earlier that the company had no choice but to sue Lamb after the company was unable to fulfill redemption cards that are placed in packs to be exchanged for autographed cards from the player. Redemption cards are placed in packs in place of cards the athlete has not yet signed and, in some cases, are replaced by autographs from other players.
Gray said the company filed the suit “to compel the completion of an autograph contract so customers holding redemptions are not forced to take replacements.”
According to Sports Collectors Daily, Lamb signed stickers and cards for Leaf prior to the 2020 NFL Draft, some of which are for sale on eBay. But, according to the suit, Leaf’s contract with him called for more autographs.
According to Leaf, Lamb “failed and refused to provide to Leaf the required number of autographed Leaf trading cards and signatures.” The suit alleges that Lamb’s refusal “caused significant damage to Leaf, including loss of income and loss of goodwill with customers.”
According to the suit, Leaf was seeking damages and attorney fees of up to $100,000.
Lamb, who played at Oklahoma, had 153 receptions for 2,037 yards and 11 touchdowns in his first two seasons with the Cowboys.