Professional sport has the ability to soar us to the highest heights and catapult us into the depths of despair.
Whether that meteoric rise to ecstasy comes from seeing your blind faith in those long NFL odds rewarded. Or the plummet to doom comes as a result of watching the team you’ve supported all your life snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in a major final.
This transformative effect is what makes us love sport, and its powers aren’t just limited to us as fans but to the players also. Dedication, talent and a degree of luck can turn a confidence shy teenager into a global phenomenon.
In this article we shine a light on some of the biggest NFL stars currently playing the game and see how their skill, desire and good fortune have transformed their lives.
Super Bowls: 1 (2013)
Net Worth: $165 million
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Russell Wilson started playing football with his Dad and brother at the age of four. Wilson’s Dad was the ideal football mentor, having made the 1980 San Diego Chargers preseason squad as a wide receiver.
The advice and no doubt inherited ability for football helped the young Russell Wilson to make a name for himself in the sport. In 2005, as a junior, Wilson threw for 3,297 passing yards and 40 passing touchdowns which helped to catch the attention of NFL scouts.
In 2012, Russell Wilson’s hard work and dedication were rewarded when he was picked by Seattle Seahawks in the NFL Draft. In nearly 10 years with the Seahawks Wilson achieved cult status, breaking records and winning Super Bowl XLVIII along the way.
Now with the Denver Broncos, Wilson is a key part of a team that are among the favorites in the NFL odds looking to bring a first Lombardi Trophy back to Denver since 2016.
Away from the sport, Wilson is an avid soccer fan and is a part owner of Seattle Sounders, the MLS franchise who won the 2019 MLS Cup.
(The 10 best plays of Russell Wilson’s time with the Seattle Seahawks.)
Odell Beckham Jr
Super Bowls: 1 (2021)
Net Worth: $40 million
30-year-old Odell Beckham Jr was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and was a jack of all trades in his junior career, playing wide receiver, quarterback, running back and cornerback. As a junior, Beckham Jr was one of those insanely frustrating kids that was just good at everything.
He was an all-district selection in basketball, a silver winning long jumper, a short distance sprinting star and an incredibly talented soccer player. Ultimately Beckham Jr decided to nail his flag to football, joining the New York Giants in 2014.
During his career he has been selected in the Pro Bowl three times, won the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year and most recently, won the Super Bowl with the Los Angeles Rams. Outside of football, Beckham Jr has been an avid campaigner for charitable causes.
(Odell Beckham Jr shows off his insane soccer ability with the F2 freestylers.)
Super Bowls: 1 (2019)
Net Worth: $40 million
Born in 1995 in Tyler, Texas to Randi Martin and former MLB pitcher Pat Mahomes, 27-year-old quarterback Patrick Mahomes always had a good platform to build on. In his early years he proved himself to be adept at a number of sports, but was best at football.
His college career saw him become one of the most hotly rated talents in the country and was eventually snapped up by the Kansas City Chiefs in 2017 NFL Draft. Whilst with the Chiefs he has won the Super Bowl, becoming the Super Bowl MVP in the process.
He was also named the NFL’s Most Valuable Player in 2018, scooping the Offensive Player of the Year award in the same year and has been named in 4 Pro Bowls. Away from the field, Mahomes has shown himself to be a savvy entrepreneur and businessman.
He is a stakeholder in baseball team the Kansas City Royals and part of the ownership group involved with Sporting Kansas City, a successful MLS franchise.
(Important to note the ‘so far’ in this video title…)
Super Bowls: 7 (2002, 2004, 2005, 2015, 2017, 2019, 2021)
Net Worth: $250 million
The undisputed GOAT of football was born in San Mateo, California in 1977 and despite posting incredible stats in his junior career with Michigan, wasn’t regarded too highly ahead of the 2000 NFL Draft.
The New England Patriots were the team who took a punt on the young Tom Brady, making him the 199th pick overall. It was a decision the Patriots hierarchy would not regret as Brady would go on to become one of the franchise’s best ever, scooping six Lombardi Trophies during his time in Boston.
Away from his incredible on-field achievements, Brady has a number of endorsements and business interests. TB12, his lifestyle brand and Autograph, an NFT Company, raised $170 million in a Series B funding round in January 2022.
If his business acumen is anything like his sporting prowess, stand aside Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, because there’s a new Sheriff in town.