Roger Staubach ranks first on the list of richest professional football players with an estimated net worth of $600 million dollars. Roger is a former Dallas Cowboys quarterback and two-time Super Bowl champion. He joined the Cowboys in 1969 and played on the team for 11 years before finally retiring in 1980 at the age of 38. Roger played football during a time where there were no extremely profitable contracts, sponsorships, or endorsement deals. During his offseason, he began to make good money while working as a real estate broker and he started his own real estate business in 1977. In retirement, he dedicated his time to the company and sold it in 2008 for $613 million dollars.
Peyton Manning is a big name in professional football. The now retired player was a top NFL quarterback throughout his 17 year career playing on both the Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos. With two Super Bowl Championships and five MVP awards under his belt, Peyton is a renowned figure that gains a lot of attention. He has large endorsement deals with companies such as Nationwide, DirecTV, Mastercard, Gatorade, Buick, and Papa John's, and earned $150 million dollars from these deals in 2016 alone. His net worth is currently estimated to be about $200 million dollars from his years of high salaries, sponsorships, and endorsements.
Steve Young is a phenomenal player with an interesting career path and story. He originally began his football career in the United States Football League (USFL) and was selected as the first overall pick in the 1984 supplemental NFL draft. He was picked by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and traded to the San Francisco 49ers just two years later after being considered a waste of time and money. He eventually followed the legacy of Joe Monata by winning a Super Bowl and two MVP awards in his 12 seasons with the 49ers. Now an analyst on ESPN's Monday Night Countdown, Steve has an estimated net worth of around $200 million dollars.
Tom Brady is easily one of the biggest names in NFL history and most decorated professional athletes in the history of sports. Tom was the quarterback for the New England Patriots for 20 seasons and played a big part in making the franchise a powerhouse. He secured six Super Bowl Championships during his time with the Patriots and will be playing his 21st season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Although he is often considered one the most skilled players in the NFL, he has never been the highest paid. He has made about $235 million dollars from his career and much more from big name sponsorships with Uggs, under Armour, Aston Martin, Movado, and more. His current net worth estimates to about $180 million dollars.
Eli Manning is a fantastic franchise quarterback who has been very successful throughout his NFL career. He was the first overall pick by the San Diego Chargers in the 2004 NFL draft and was instantly traded to the New York Giants. He played for the Giants for 16 years and won two Super Bowls during his reign. Throughout his career, he had many endorsement deals and became a very respected and recognizable name around the world. Having just retired, Eli made approximately $252 million dollars from playing in the NFL. As of 2020, Eli's net worth is estimated at $150 million dollars.
John Elway had an incredible 16 year long career as the quarterback for the Denver Broncos. He led the team to two Super Bowl Championships and has been inducted into the NFL's Hall of Fame. After retiring, he became the co-owner of an Arena Football League team and sold his car dealership for $82.5 million dollars. Starting in 2011, he became the general manager and executive vice president for the Denver Broncos but has never taken a stake in the team. After years of playing football and being involved in the operations of the league, John has an estimated net worth of $145 million dollars.
Drew Brees has been an ever-improving and skilled player in the NFL for many years. He started for the New Orleans Saints in 2006 and has been the top quarterback for them ever since. He led the Saints franchise to their first Super Bowl Championship win in 2009 and has achieved many other accomplishments that make him a shoo-in for the Hall of Fame. As of the end of his 2019 season, Drew has accumulated about $244 million dollars in career earnings and his additional endorsement deals have made him one of the most recognizable players in the NFL. His current estimated net worth is approximately $120 million dollars, but he is still not done with his NFL career.
Aaron Rodgers is arguably one of the best yet least decorated quarterbacks of all time. His career began with three seasons as a backup to another legendary quarterback, Brett Favre, in the Green Bay Packers franchise. Since then, he has been their leading man taking the team to a Super Bowl and securing two MVP awards. Across his 15 seasons in the NFL, he has earned $233 million dollars in career earnings. He has also received many endorsements, most notably with State Farm Insurance. His estimated net worth is currently $120 million dollars and he just signed a new deal with the Packers that will increase this number soon.
Russell Wilson is only 30 years old yet has already accomplished so much in his NFL career. The current Seattle Seahawks quarterback is a six-time Pro Bowler and led his team to a Super Bowl Championship victory in 2014 and appearance in 2015. In 2019, he signed a $140 million dollar contract extension, which made him the second highest paid quarterback in the NFL behind Matt Ryan. He also earned about $90 million dollars in endorsements and other pursuits between 2018 and 2019. His current net worth is approximately $115 million dollars.
Brett Favre is a big name in professional football and is a highly respected player. For 20 seasons, Brett was a renowned quarterback in the NFL, mainly for the Green Bay Packers franchise. He led the Packers to a Super Bowl in 1996 and was a three-time MVP award winner. In his later seasons, he briefly played for the Minnesota Vikings and New York Jets, but he is best known for his days as a Packer. He got inducted into the football Hall of Fame in 2016 and now serves as an assistant football coach at a high school in Mississippi during his retirement free time. His estimated net worth is around $100 million dollars.
On average, NFL players make approximately $1.9 million dollars a year. Even though the NFL is the most profitable professional sports league in the world, the players rank last among the four major American professional sports (NBA, MLB, NHL, NFL) in average salary. The average NFL salary doesn't spike until most players are out of the league or older, and those players between the ages of 22 to 27 earn far less than the overall average. This age range, however, makes up 70% of the NFL.
Entering the 2020-2021 NFL, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes will be the highest paid NFL player after signing the largest contract in NFL history. His contract is a 10 year deal worth up to $503 million dollars, which gives him an average salary of $45 million dollars a year. The next highest average salary per year goes to Russell Wilson for $35 million dollars, followed by Ben Roethlisberger and Aaron Rodgers.
In the NFL, the quarterbacks make more money than all other positions. The average yearly salary cap for the top 10 players at the quarterback position is $17.9 million dollars. Additionally, the maximum salary cap for an NFL quarterback is $20.4 million dollars and the minimum is $15.8 million dollars, which is still higher than the average of the next highest paid position. The other highest paid positions are the wide receivers, left tackles, and defensive ends. The cheapest or lowest paid positions in the NFl are the long snappers and fullbacks.
Currently, the richest team owner in the NFL is David Tepper, owner of the Carolina Panthers. The 62 year old has a net worth of approximately $12 billion dollars and he is ranked as the 125th richest person in the world. He was recruited as a credit analyst by Goldman Sachs in 1985 and quit after seven years to start his own private hedge fund, Appaloosa Management. His business is currently valued at $13 billion dollars. He purchased the Carolina Panthers in 2018 and has been the owner ever since.