The Indianapolis Colts announced they have finalized their contract with Peyton Manning for an estimated $90 million over the next five years , with an average of $23 million being paid out each of the first three years of the contract. While it is a mind-boggling payout to most of us, paydays like Manning’s are not uncommon in the sports world. There are many athletes today who make comparable salaries between their contracts and endorsement deals. Here is a look at just a few of the highest earning athletes.
Tiger’s last few years have been rough; he split from his wife, suffered an injury, and most recently, parted ways with his caddie. Even with all of his personal and professional turmoil, Woods is still one of the highest paid athletes around. Between earnings from golf tournaments and endorsement deals, Tiger Woods earned $62.3 million last year.
King James may be one of the most controversial players in basketball right now, but there is no debating his earning power. James made the “Fortunate 50” list this year as one of the sports world’s highest earners. The man who just earned his first NBA championship ring also earned a whopping $44.5 million last year, including $30 million in endorsement deals. He is behind only Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson in earnings for last year.
The New York Yankees are well-known for paying top dollar for talent, and no one on the team makes more than A-Rod. His contract with the team back in 2007 was worth $275 million, and last year alone he earned $33 million. He doesn’t have as many endorsement deals as some of the other top athletes, which makes his earnings that much more impressive.
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is an impressive earner not from how much he makes racing, but how much he earns in endorsement deals. He earned a mere $4.5 million from NASCAR races, but made $22 million in endorsements . Earnhardt is one of racing’s most beloved figures, and chances are he could keep earning millions without ever getting behind the wheel of a car ever again.
Sports Network “Manning contract steals spotlight from free-agents” Los Angeles Times
Michael McCarthy “Tiger Woods still ranks as top-earning U.S. athlete ” USA Today
Kurt Helin “LeBron James third highest earning athlete in America ” MSNBC.com
“2010 New York Yankees Salaries ” USA Today
“50 highest earning American athletes ” Sports Illustrated