Across the board, NFL players get the short end of the stick when it comes to being paid for their unreal athletic ability and performances. Their contracts are largely unguaranteed, their career windows are short — probably because playing in a football game, even at levels below the National Football League, is comparable to a car accident — and their endorsement opportunities are generally slim.
In fact, aside from the handful of guys who reporters corral after the game and those who are just flat-out massive human beings, most NFL players can take off their pads, helmet, and jersey and slip out into the night without anyone noticing.
But some of them are able to bankroll their fame and (relative) fortune into more fortune, and sometimes even more fame. From licensing deals to owning franchises to eventually owning an NFL team, à la the late Al Davis, the money’s out there if the player is savvy enough to seek it. Here are 19 of the wealthiest NFL players, both past and present — the guys who have been able to take their athletic acumen and turn it into continued financial success.
17. (tie) Joe Flacco
Net worth: $55 million
Is Joe Flacco an elite quarterback? That question is still up for debate. Is he worth a lot of money? That question, on the other hand, is not. Over the course of his career, the Super Bowl winner has pulled in almost $115 million in total cash earnings and is reportedly worth $55 million. Yeah, if we were him, we’d be giving the thumbs up, too.