Football is the most popular sport in the US and broadcasting deals bring in billions of dollars for the NFL. Although there are various avenues that money takes, much of it goes on the annual contracts for the players. But most of the current stars of the league had to make do with playing for nothing in college before making the leap to the pro game.
The rules over payments to college football stars have now changed, of course, allowing athletes to make money from their names, images, and likenesses (known as N.I.L.). Even though there was always a lot of money swirling around college sports – and the best college football betting sites did a roaring trade – the players didn’t get anything.
It only seems fair that these college athletes now get something for their talents, especially since the universities they play for have been benefiting financially for years. Patrick Mahomes is one of the biggest names in football and didn’t make any money while at college. But now he is one of the most well-paid players in the NFL. Let’s take a closer look at his career, life, and net worth.
If the new college athlete payment system had been in place when Patrick Mahomes was at Texas Tech, he may not have actually made much early on. He spent most of his freshman year as a backup QB, splitting his time between football and the college baseball team. It was in his sophomore year that he became a starter – and that continued into his junior year.
Mahomes decided to forego his final year and make himself eligible for the NFL Draft. He had attracted many of the teams with his rising talent and in the end, the Kansas City Chiefs traded up to take him 10th overall in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft.
He didn’t immediately play for the Chiefs but still signed a guaranteed four-year deal worth $16.42 million, with another $10 million as a signing bonus. By his second year, he was the starter for Kansas City and has now won two Super Bowls in six years. He was the MVP in both of those championship games and has also won two NFL MVP awards. He has made the Pro Bowl every year since being made a starter and is now recognized as one of the best players in the league.
Mahomes’ worth to the Chiefs was evident even before he won a second Super Bowl for the franchise last year and the Chiefs were quite happy to pay him well for his services. In April 2020, Kansas City picked up the fifth-year option on Mahomes’ contract – and then broke all records three months later.
Mahomes signed a ten-year extension that runs through to the 2031 season. The deal is worth $477 million, with the potential to make another $53 million in bonuses. In doing so, he became the first sports athlete ever to have a half-billion-dollar contract. It is still the largest contract in American pro sports, although both Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi have since signed bigger deals of their own.
So, where does all that contract signing leave Patrick Mahomes when it comes to net worth? It is now estimated that Mahomes’ net worth is about $60-70 million. He is only 28 and even in the short-career world of pro football, he is likely to play for a fair while yet – and that amount will only increase on an annual basis.
Mahomes has actually restructured his payment deal and is now rumored to be taking home around $50 million a year, up from around $45. Obviously, there is the risk of injury in the NFL, but his guaranteed salary means that he is likely to remain the highest-paid player in the league for quite a while.
Obviously, Mahomes’ base salary is just the beginning. We have already mentioned that he has the potential to earn a fortune just in bonuses each year. But as a very personable and marketable athlete, Mahomes can also command high fees for endorsing a wide range of goods and services.
Some of his more high-profile sponsorship and endorsement deals are with Procter and Gamble, Adidas, State Farm, and Oakley. He is also one of only two players to feature on the cover of the Madden game on two occasions – the other being Tom Brady. It is now estimated that Mahomes earns around $7 million a year from his many endorsements.
As one of the highest-profile athletes in all of sports, Mahomes has also realized that he can use his popularity to highlight issues that are close to his heart and raise a lot of awareness and money for charity. He has already set up a foundation in his name, designed to improve the lives of children, and has also spoken out over police brutality.
He has not been afraid to go against the NFL questioned its silencing of protests and has been vocal on a number of other serious issues. He has campaigned for increased voter registration and even worked with a program urging fellow players to get out and vote.
The Future for Mahomes
There seems to be no end to what Patrick Mahomes can do on a football field – and how well he can be paid to do so. His marketability is sky-high, with his hugely popular personality able to break through to many different demographics.
Mahomes is already the highest-paid player in pro football and will be able to earn even more in the future. As his fellow professionals sign new contracts, the Chiefs will be pressured into making sure Mahomes is equally well paid. For now, Patrick Mahomes continues to have the biggest net worth in the NFL.