Played with two teams of 11 players each, the very first game of American football was played in November 1869. Multiple decades and Super Bowl seasons later, the world currently has numerous NFL (National Football League) players that are worth over a $100 million!
The NFL was founded in 1920 and is recognized today as the highest professional league for American football globally. Unlike other sports, NFL players usually secure unguaranteed contracts and short career windows. However, there are some who break through the ranks, come out on top and find ways to secure and maintain millions. Scroll below to see the top 10 richest football players in the world.
10 Ben Roethlisberger
After winning two Super Bowls and appearing for the Pro Bowl 4 times, Roethlisberger acquired a huge earning of over $158 million before agency fees. As of 2019, his net worth is estimated at $70 million.
9 Joe Montana
Famously known as ‘Joe Cool,’ and ‘The Comeback Kid,’ Joe Montana played in the NFL for 15 years. After winning a championship playing for the University of Notre Dame, Montana was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in 1979, where he spent a majority of his football career. He won four Super Bowl championships and broke multiple records such as the most passes without interception and winning MVP three times in a row.
In 2011 Montana partnered with a vineyard in Northern California and started to produce his own wine under the label Montagia. As of 2019, his net worth is estimated to be at $80 million.
8 Drew Brees
At the age of 39, Drew Brees is still one of the most prolific football players in the world. After an amazing college football career at Purdue University, Brees was drafted as a quarterback by the San Diego chargers back in 2001. After joining the New Orleans Saints in 2006, Brees led the team to their very first Super Bowl.
With over a dozen endorsement contracts, Drew Brees is considered to be NFL’s most efficacious influencer. He has worked with brands such as Nike, PepsiCo, Verizon and Microsoft. As of 2019, Brees’s net worth is estimated to be $100 million.
7 Brett Favre
Brett Favre was not only the first football player to ever secure a $100 million dollar contract, but also the sole player till date to win the NFL MVP award 3 times a row. In his 20 year NFL career, Favre played with the Atlanta Falcons, the New York Jets, the Minnesota Vikings and the Green Bay Packers, spending a majority of his career playing for the latter.
Favre has appeared in advertisements endorsing renowned brands such as Nike, Wrangler jeans, and Sears over the years. As of 2019, his net worth is estimated to be at $100 million.
6 Eli Manning
Peyton Manning’s younger sibling and Archie Manning’s son, Eli Manning ranks in 6th on our list today. After playing college football at University of Mississippi, Eli Manning joined NFL’s San Diego Chargers in 2004 as a quarterback. He was instantaneously traded to the New York Giants, a team which he won two Super Bowl championships with as a starting quarterback.
Working with brands like Toyota, Reebok, Samsung and DirectTV, Manning earns $8 - $10 million a year solely with his endorsements. As of 2019, Eli Manning’s net worth is estimated to be at a $100 million.
5 John Elway
Former NFL quarterback and the current general manager and executive vice president of the Denver Broncos, John Elway ranks in 5th on our list today. After playing college football at Stanford University, Elway joined the Denver Broncos where he played football for 16 year, his entire NFL career. Till date, John Elway has the highest number of victories recorded by a starting quarterback.
Apart from the millions he raked in through his football career, Elway also makes a grand living through his chain of restaurants and car dealerships. As of 2019, his net worth is estimated at $145 millions.
4 Tom Brady
Tom Brady, the star quarterback of the New England Patriots is considered to be one of the world’s greatest football players of all time. After playing football for the University of Michigan, Brady was drafted by the Patriots in the year 2000.
Playing in 6 Super Bowl championships, he has acquired 4 Super Bowl and 3 NFL MVP titles over the years. Brady has appeared on numerous TV shows over the years including The Simpsons, Entourage and Family Guy. Furthermore, he has endorses brands like UGGs, Aston Martin and Smart water. As of 2019, Tom Brady’s net worth is estimated to be at $180 million.
3 Steve Young
Playing college football at Brigham Young University, Steve Young broke school and NCAA records and became the runner up for the Heisman Trophy in 1983. After playing for the Los Angeles Express in the USFL and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in NFL before joining the San Francisco 49ers, where he played for 13 seasons.
Over the years he played in 7 Pro Bowls, won 2 MVP awards, and three Super Bowl rings. Apart from being a whiz on the football field, Young has also mastered the world of investing and private equity. As of 2019, his net worth is estimated to be at $200 million.
2 Peyton Manning
With 18 NFL seasons and 2 championships, Peyton Manning ranks in 2nd on our list today. This renowned quarterback spent 14 seasons with the Colts, and his remaining 4 playing with the Denver Broncos. After taking a year off from football and being waived by his former team, the Colts, Manning secured a $96 million 5 year contract with the Broncos.
Manning also earned hefty cheques through the golden stream of endorsements. He has sold Papa John’s pizza, Direct TV, Gatorade and more on television. As of 2019 Peyton Manning’s net worth is estimated to be at $200 million.
1 Roger Staubach
This former Dallas Cowboy joined the NFL in 1969 and played for 11 seasons. During his football career, he led the Dallas Cowboys to the Super Bowl 5 times, winning the cup twice! He was also branded as the MVP of Super Bowl VI in 1972.
Staubach worked as a real estate broker between seasons during his Super Bowl years to ensure he had a backup source of income if he ever got injured. All his planning must have worked off, because today Staubach is worth a whopping $600 million.