Atlanta Falcons Blog

Atlanta Falcons blog by D. Orlando Ledbetter, the pro football and Atlanta Falcons reporter for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

7 financial pitfalls for professional athletes

INDIANAPOLIS -- With the recent news about former NFL running back Clinton Portis declaring bankruptcy and the news about Marshawn Lynch saving move of his money, financial literacy and wealth management have been hot topic this offseason.

Portis made nearly $43 million over his nine year career, but recently revealed that he's nearly $5 million in debt. Lynch, who's retired, has saved nearly $50 million from his base salary over 10 years.

The Morgan Stanley Global Sports and Entertainment Group held a seminar for NFL prospects and their families at the Senior Bowl. Several players were still talking about the seminar at the NFL scouting combine.

The seven financial pitfalls that athletes in their position face were discussed.

“The real key challenge here is that emerging and veteran athletes have very unique needs,” said John Vander Zee, Morgan Stanley’s managing director and chief operating officer of the Global Sports and Entertainment Group. “So, if you just try to treat them as somebody who just happens to have a lot of money, you’re going to miss the challenges that they are going to face and you’re not going to do the best job for them.”

During the seminar, which was built specifically for pro athletes, former NFL player Bart Scott and former NBA player Antoine Walker addressed the players.

Here are the seven pitfalls that pro athlete face:

1. Spending beyond your means

2. Underestimating taxes

3. Pressure from family & friends

4. Fraud or identity theft

5. Trusting the wrong people

6. Not saving for the future

7. Risky investments or lack of protection against risk

--From Morgan Stanley Global Sports and Entertainment



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About the Author

D. Orlando Ledbetter is the Atlanta Falcons beat writer for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.