Signing on the dotted line as one of the NFL’s top players guarantees fame and fortune. However, with that fame and fortune comes high-limits spending that can land players in financial trouble and even financial disaster.
From guys who made a measly $35 million to Michael Vick and his famous $130 million bankruptcy there is no lack of bankrupt NFL players.
While some guys in the NFL have managed to lose $25 million or less we chose to focus on the NFL’s top money losing bankruptcies.
Career Earnings: $35,000,000
Tiki Barber was one of the best players in the NFL during his playing days and that respect landed him a paying gig at NBC. However, Tiki eventually left his pregnant wife for a 23-year-old intern and NBC fired him while citing the company’s morality clause in his contract.
Tiki left the NFL to pursue a broadcasting career and soon he was left with nothing.
Barber attempted to re-enter the NFL but all he caught was a bunch of slack.
Career Earnings: $40,000,000
JaMarcus Russell couldn’t get anything right on the field or in life. He was known to sip on “Grape Drank” which is just grape soda and codeine cough syrup.
On the field MaMarcus Russell became one of the biggest rookie jokes in the NFL after being signed by the Raiders.
Russell says he is “far from broke” but that hasn’t stopped him from falling behind on multiple mortgage payments and owing the state of California $200,000 in back taxes.
His NFL career is pretty much destroyed so we don’t expect to see him lost another $40 million anytime soon.
Career Earnings: $50,000,000
Mark Brunell made a good deal of money then threw it away on bad real estate deals in Michigan. We don’t understand how a fast food chain called Whataburger could possibly do him wrong.
Brunell, a former quick-handed lefty is currently facing $25 million in lawsuits.
At 41-years-old there is no way Mark Brunell is suiting back up to earn another $50 million.
Career Earnings: $50,000,000
Like Brunell, Lawrence Taylor earned a whopping $50 million. Unlike Burnell his bad investments focused on sniffing drugs, lavish spending, and an overall questionable lifestyle.
After his retirement Taylor was arrested for various drug situations and was caught by the IRS while filing a false tax return.
Oh and there was that underage prostitute sting he was caught in.
This guy was not a winner in life or finances.
Career Earnings: $55,000,000
We didn’t know Chris McAlister was broke until he went before a judge and asked to have his child support payments reduced.
A former cornerback for the Baltimore Ravens, McAlister eventually had to move back in with his parents.
From $55 million to living in mom and dad’s basement. Money NOT-well managed.
Career Earnings: $60,000,000
Four baby mamas didn’t help Warren Sapp hold onto his milions. In fact, the former NFL All-Star is believed to have sold his Super Bowl ring and National Championship ring.
Along with paying child support four times over he also claimed ownership of a lion skin rug and 240 pairs of Michael Jordan branded Nike sneakers.
Throw in $7 million in debt and he is beyond bankrupt, he’s indebted for life.
Career Earnings: $70,000,000
Deuce McAllister may be the NFL player on our list to go broke the quickest.
McAllister invested all of his money in a failed car dealership.
One year after leaving the NFL he was $7 million in debt and the local Sheriff’s office was auctioning off his Louisiana home.
From riches to rags in under 12 months.
Career Earnings: $80,000,000
T.O. I honestly believe thought he could play in the NFL until he was 90-years-old. Even after every team in the NFL turned him down he continued to spend money as if he would return.
While he managed 15 touchdowns in his final NFL season his age and strange on-field antics led to a forced retirement.
A failed reality TV show and no offers on the table have left him struggling to get by.
A six-time pro-bowler with money problems is sad, watching it all go down on reality TV is even more sad.
Career Earnings: $130,000,000
After Michael Vick was caught dog fighting his fortune was wiped away.
Vick had personally bankrolled the dog fighting business and he was forced to spend two years in prison.
Vick was later discovered to have been supporting an entourage of more than 30 people.
During his bankruptcy hearing we learned that Michael Vick spend $18 million in one twenty three month period.
Vick after getting out of jail inked a new six-year, $100M deal with the Philadelphia Eagles.
Michael Vick’s story may not be fully written yet but the financial ruin of the other NFL bankrupted players on our list shows a less certain future. After all, this was a group of guys who did one thing really good in life, played football.