Dak Prescott has been viewed as flawless off the field since joining the Dallas Cowboys.
That perception appears to have taken a hit with an ESPN report suggesting Prescott used a machine to sign autographs for a memorabilia company.
ESPN states that Beckett Grading Services’ principal authenticator, Steve Grad, questioned the authenticity of Prescott’s signature after examining five autographed cards from Irving-based Panini’s 2016 Prizm set.
“They had a very machine-like feel,” Grad told the website. “You could see the starts and stops.
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“I immediately knew they were autopen. I’ve never heard of a modern athlete doing this.”
Attempts to reach Prescott’s agent, Jeff Guerriero, were unsuccessful. Emails to Panini have yet to be returned.
The ESPN report says that Prescott may have never seen the cards, as blank labels and cards are often sent to marketing agents first.
Panini does require athletes to sign an affidavit stating that what it is returning is genuine, according to the report.
Prescott is not the first athlete to have this come into question. Takkarist McKinley, the Atlanta Falcons’ first-round pick, didn’t sign cards that were distributed by Panini in May.
Panini told customers to return the cards in exchange for ones with authentic autographs.