Brees concedes athletes “probably” make too much money

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As the NFL prepares to launch its annual spending spree (which may not turn out to be much of a spree, after all), one of the men making the most money of all NFL players admits that athletes likely make too much of it.

Yes, we probably do,” Brees recently told WWL radio in New Orleans, via the team’s official website.  “Unless you’re finding a cure for cancer or creating world peace, I don’t know if anybody deserves to get that much money.  That’s the industry that we’re in.  You could probably say the same for actors, actresses and entertainers.  We’re in the entertainment industry and business is business and there is a market.  The market establishes what you get paid.”

Of course, under the current NFL market only a small handful of athletes are getting grossly overpaid like Brees, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, and (now) Joe Flacco.

“It doesn’t surprise me that Joe Flacco jumped me,” Brees said.  “I’m sure that, maybe it’s Aaron Rodgers, maybe it’s somebody else, is going leap-frog Joe Flacco and the trend is going to continue in that direction as our game continues to grow and the popularity continues to grow.  That doesn’t surprise me.”

But the problem is that, with each cap-busting deal for a franchise quarterback, the role players and scrubs end up being pushed to take less and less.  While it’s a reality of a salary-capped system, it becomes more pronounced when the cap is increasing by less than two percent per year and the expectations at the top of the market continue to soar.

For Brees, his 2012 contract eventually will force him and the Saints to make a hard decision.  Come 2015, they can carry $26.4 million under his name on a cap that could still be south of $130 million.  (Even at $130 million, that’s still more than 20 percent of the entire spending limit for one player.)  Or they can ask him to take less money.  Or they can decide that the time has come to move on.

That’s likely the real reason Tom Brady opted to take only $27 million over the final three years of his current contract.  Though he likely will be underpaid, the team will never deem him to be so overpaid that the Patriots have to cut him.

47 responses to “Brees concedes athletes “probably” make too much money

  1. While he uses entertainers and athletes as examples, I’d expand that to say NO ONE period deserves that much money. Includes CEO’s, hedge fund managers, Wall Street bankers and the like.

    There isn’t a person in the world who is worthy of getting paid $100 Million dollars or more, period. Especially that much over the course of only a few years (or 1 year in the case of many CEO’s and hedge fund managers).

    Even getting $10 million a year is more money then most people would ever need for an entire lifetime.

  2. Drew Brees must be a person who cannot decide who he is or what he really believes. One day he’s a free market capitalist who is happy he squeezed all he could out of the Saints in his contract, and on others he’s a guilt-ridden socialist. If he really thinks he gets paid to much, he could consider voluntarily taking a pay cut to allow his team to pay his teammates. I doubt many really respect him for being hypocritical.

  3. Who decides who makes “too much” money? Oh that’s right, Obama and his lib buddies decide that now.

    Well played America. Well played…

  4. Probably? Theres no doubt about it that the balance of wealth in this country is completely out of whack. Theres alot of families who are barely surviving, yet rich people are getting insanely richer.

  5. At least he’s given MILLIONS to charities, learning centers, and higher education. Unlike guys buying Cars, houses, and material crap. But, either way, in capitalist USA, no one ‘makes too much’. Sorry, those are the rules.

  6. You’re a fool for even trying to imply that Drew!!!

    The NFLPA (whose executive board you were on) screwed the players over and didn’t try to find ways to avoid salary cap stagnance, filed a worthless anti-trust suit, and never tried to one up the teams from preventing you to file a collusion lawsuit.

    You always have to file a collusion lawsuit or a charge when it is obvious. You never close doors on those.

    Sports salaries have always been worse than actors and music artists! Nothing need to be said there.

    Since the recession sports unions (with exception to the MLBPA) have been taking defeats.

    The NBA’s union is probably worse than yours because they lost an additional escrow account that went with their revenue sharing and had a bigger shrinkage in revenue share than the NFLPA’s. The NFLPA had a 50% share after $1 billion was taken off the top and then it went to 47% after the 2011 lockout. The NBA was at 57% with the escrow account not included and after its lockout it went to 49%.

    Ouch.

    MLB is the only overpaid one because their revenues and current shares are because of steroid use by players in prior years. That’s right. A fake product got other players to be even richer today even though offensive juggernauts are declining and they said “chicks dig the long ball.”

    What’s worse is that MLB gets no CBA coverage and the MLBPA is never scathed or accused of being greedy even though I do not fault them for pursuing what they want. If they can get it great for them, but it’s not right that they get little criticism for their pay versus the NFL and NBA.

    If you want the most overpaid professions there are a few: network news hosts, journalists, and anchors and reality stars!!!

    Network news doesn’t give you news and even if it does you already found out about it online.

    Journalists get you garbage news. No hard hitting stories that evolve the mindsets of countries.

    Reality stars, nothing needed to be said there as well.

    Check out the salaries of other professions and you’ll see why athletes get somewhat less juxtapose to the others.

  7. “I’m sure Drew feels so badly that he feels compelled to give some of it back, right?”

    Do you honestly believe the Saints would lower ticket prices by even one penny if he did?

  8. Of course Bree’s wouldn’t consider doing what Tom Brady did for his team. The more this guy opens his mouth, the less I like him.

  9. Drew and many other obviously don’t understand supply and demand. The NFL brings in a ton of money because lot’s of people enjoy the product they put out. If Drew thinks the players should earn less then I guess he should have brought that up during the collective bargaining process and allowed the the league and owners to keep more.

  10. And this folks is what is called a moment of lucidity folks. Glad Drew finally had a clear moment from his Nyquil induced haze.

  11. The guy who was the poster child for nfl players getting paid more last cba signing has done a 180 AFTER he got his payday? Funny how that works. I guess its time for Brees to head down to Venezuela with kevin spacey and sean penn and bitch about the wealthy capitalists while hording his own pile and living like a king.

    P.s. there IS a difference between raising money for charity and reaching into your own pocket.

  12. After you buy the biggest house you can possibly find, six of the coolest cars you’ve ever seen, and set aside trust funds for the next three generations of your family, you might STILL have another 5-7 million dollars leftover on just ONE year of someone like Brees’ contract.

    Drew makes an astute point that the market determines their pay, but I have no problem increasing the top-rate on these guys (or anyone else making more money than they could ever conceivably spend).

  13. What a dumb comment for a spokesman of the NFLPA to make. Everyone should make what they are worth, regardless of him being afraid of what the public perceives. I’d rather have the example of people maxing out their earning potential than crying about being overpaid. Owners are making 9 figure profits off the backs of players. I for one wish the unions of minimum wage workers were as strong as pro sports unions so we could have a better society overall. Not in the United Corporations of America, but such is life.

  14. Laughable…this coming from a guy that charges anyone (children, mom’s, etc) $200+ for an autograph on an item they bring in.

  15. Why do people begrudge the money athletes make? I have never understood this.

    Giselle Bundchen makes several times more money for standing there while people take pictures of her than her husband does for risking his health 16-20 times + per year.

    Adam Sandler makes 40million dollars a movie and he hasn’t been funny for 15 years.

    And don’t pontificate about income disparity in this country. The owners that most of you supported in the last lockout make more money in interest on their fortunes per year than 99% of NFL players will earn in their careers.

    Lastly, don’t talk to me about ticket prices. Ticket prices aren’t high because player salaries are high- player salaries are high because ticket prices are high. That supply and demand economics 101. They charge it because you pay it, period.

  16. It’s only fair that athletes get a piece of the pie considering how much profit they generate. The biggest reason it’s even considered “too much” is because there’s a salary cap.

    If I was the main reason a company is making hundreds of millions of dollars, I’d make sure I’m getting compensated for it too. Whether you’re an athlete or a regular Joe, the philosphy is the same.

    The only REAL way to stop them from getting “overpaid” is to stop watching the NFL altogether, which I doubt any of you people complaining are going to do.

  17. nygiantstones says:
    Mar 11, 2013 12:29 PM
    What a dumb comment for a spokesman of the NFLPA to make. Everyone should make what they are worth, regardless of him being afraid of what the public perceives. I’d rather have the example of people maxing out their earning potential than crying about being overpaid. Owners are making 9 figure profits off the backs of players. I for one wish the unions of minimum wage workers were as strong as pro sports unions so we could have a better society overall. Not in the United Corporations of America, but such is life.

    ________________________

    Ya man, you are right. A guy working in an automotive plant who drills bolts all day should get $30 an hour. I bet it would not put the company out of business and have the taxpayer dollars go to bail it out….oh wait

  18. The only way someone makes “too much money” in my book is if their performance level within the standards of their profession and or their position doesn’t warrant it. It also doesn’t help if that person can’t be fired due to a myriad of reasons unrelated to their performance. That situation happens a lot more in the “real world” than it does in the NFL.

  19. The reality is this simple. If any of you were a QB, actress, model, whatever you people complain about, if somebody was willing to pay you crazy money, you would all take it. Not one person who posted here would pass it up.
    And when a bunch of people go to a website and slam you with their pious drivel, you wouldn’t care in the least.
    Now let’s get over ourselves, m’kay?

  20. Where are all the critics of Peyton Mannings contract or Flacco’s contract? Brees said the market for athletes is what it is. If the market for my job was $20 million a year, I’d sure take it. And so would every person commenting on this issue. Is the pay for athletes ridiculous? Yep! But as long as fans dish out money for tickets and merchandise, the owners will continue to pay big bucks to the athletes that draw in all that revenue.

  21. The more I hear from this guy, the more I lose respect for him. If you think that way, then why didn’t show that when you’re signing the contract. You pretty much handy-caped your team with all the money you’re getting.

    All this guy does is milk the stats, even in the garbage time. You’re not a good representation of the players. GO AWAY

  22. Once again, Drew Brees speaks the truth, while others try to find fault with that. He knows that in the grand scheme of things, a movie actor doesn’t do enough to deserve 20 million dollars for simply being in a movie, nor does a rock star do enough to deserve his wealth either. It’s no different for a top athelete, but that’s just the way society works. Yes, someone who cures cancer or creates world peace is doing more to benefit society, and it’s good that he at least understands that. Lesser men don’t.

  23. I don’t have a problem with the players getting the money but I do take issue with Brees, Flacco, P Manning and others taking up a sixth (or more) of the salary cap. Unlike the CEO vs Post Room boy argument for a disparity in wages, QBs rely more heavily on the co-workers to achieve success. It must be causing real problems in the locker room.

  24. dwnhillwhaler says:
    Mar 11, 2013 12:25 PM
    The guy who was the poster child for nfl players getting paid more last cba signing has done a 180 AFTER he got his payday? Funny how that works. I guess its time for Brees to head down to Venezuela with kevin spacey and sean penn and bitch about the wealthy capitalists while hording his own pile and living like a king.

    P.s. there IS a difference between raising money for charity and reaching into your own pocket.
    ================================
    Um, Brees has given MILLIONS to various charities and Sean Penn lives in a complete dump in Haite while volunteering his labor and wealth to the needy… Very bad examples, dwnhillwhaler

  25. I see nothing wrong with Brees getting what he’s worth. He’s put in the hard work and been successful all the while maintaining a clean image at the most high profile position in the NFL.

    I’d rather him get it than some of the losers you see getting DWI’s and beating their mommas.

    If people think they get paid too much then the only alternative is a communistic system that doesn’t let anyone achieve anything without it being for the good of the government.

    See how great your pro football would be then.

  26. The main difference between Drew and most of the other “overpaid” athletes…Drew will still have his $$$ when his playing days are over.

  27. The salary’s will come down when fans say enough is enough and quit paying the obscene prices for the tickets to the games. It really hard to say who is the most greedy, the players, or the owners.

  28. I’ve said it so many times that professional athletes are way overpaid. To me and I’m sure there’s others that will probably agree when I say, professional athletes don’t deserve anywhere near 100 million dollars no matter how long the contract is. Some of these athletes as we’ve seen, that’ve already retired are broke because they don’t know how to manage that type of money. If anyone in this world deserves to be making more than any other industry, it should be the military service members. They sacrifice their lives day in and day out and are on call 24 hrs a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days out of the year. I don’t think there’s anyone else who can even come close to matching that type of work. Professional athletes should be making way less and shouldn’t even have the slightest problem making a living, when the majority of the rest of us don’t have too much of a problem making a living.

  29. In the name of liberalism, social justice, spreading the wealth and the rest, it ain’t fair that these guys get paid what they do while the others get far less. The money needs to be spread out so each player is getting exactly the same salary across the board, regardless of how important they are or how much they contribute.

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