Players seeking high-interest lockout loans

Last month, we reported that players without strong credit ratings or significant collateral could get through the lockout via loans with interest rates as high as 22 percent.

Yahoo! Sports’ reiterates and expands on the concept with a recent item explaining that the interest rates will range from 18 to 24 percent, with rates as high as 36 percent upon default.

“There are a lot of people out there pitching these things,” an unnamed attorney told “It’s almost predatory lending.  It’s people going to guys who they know are already in debt, or don’t have the ability to pay their bills during the year and [lending them money] at such obscene terms, that you say, ‘Hey, no one would ever sign something like this.’  But a lot of players are.”

They are because they need the money to get through the lockout.

“I know at least 16 different teams that have had players go out and have to set these [high risk loans] up,” an unnamed financial advisor told  “Guys on the Dolphins, Saints, 49ers, Panthers, Chargers, Bears, Vikings.”

The financial advisors end up cashing in via the various transactions that the loans will spawn, including fees for setting up the loans, fees for the sales of disability insurance that ensures repayment in the event of injury, and other financial transactions related to and arising from the players’ need for money.

“Sounds like total B.S.,” Cardinals kicker and NFLPA representative Jay Feely told “I think it’s predatory and unjust.  I don’t think they should be charging those interest rates and I would encourage every player [considering high-risk loans] to look elsewhere.  I think if you went to your bank, or outside lending agencies, you’re not going to pay that kind of interest.  That’s absurd.”

The problem is that plenty of players don’t have the collateral or the credit history to justify a conventional loan.  And, as we pointed out last month, the players who have been sufficiently responsible to accumulate collateral and/or strong credit ratings likely have saved enough money to carry them through the lockout.

The issue puts the NFLPA* in an awkward position.  On one hand, the union-turned-trade-association needs to protect its individual members.  On the other hand, any transactions that help keep the players united in the face of a potentially protracted lockout helps all of them, even if it means that the players who rely on the high-interest loans to get through the lockout eventually will have to come up with a lot of cash to pay off the debts — or try to figure out how to wipe properly with two broken thumbs, Jon Jansen-style, after a visit from the pre-Creed Rocky Balboa.

47 responses to “Players seeking high-interest lockout loans

  1. I don’t understand this whole issue. I thought the players received their salary in the form of 16 game checks. There are no games now. Why would any player be paid now? They should each have received their entire salary for last season with no further cash coming to them until opening week.

    So they are not really in any worse financial condition than they would be were there to be no lockout.

    Why the need for loans?

    Did I miss something here?

  2. How the hell can you make at least hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, and not have any collateral or credit history? If that’s the case, then you really think they are worried about interest rates? Hell, they probably don’t even know what it means….

  3. The problem is that plenty of players don’t have the collateral or the credit history to justify a conventional loan. And, as we pointed out last month, the players who have been sufficiently responsible to accumulate collateral and/or strong credit ratings likely have saved enough money to carry them through the lockout.

    This FACT will force the Union to get real!
    Tell me again how Jemarcus Russell is broke?
    Why did Dez Bryant buy 800K in jewelry?
    I guess those Rookie seminars are having little to no effect???

  4. 2 Questions

    (1.)Why didnt the union set up a financial institution that the players that need loans could go to at low cost?( 2.)18-24% is criminal and wouldn’t it violate usury laws in most states?

  5. I’m sorry are we supposed to feel bad for these guys? 6 figure incomes from a previous year and they can’t manage with no paycheck for a few months? Cry me a friggin river.

  6. This is where the union/trade assoc. needs to step in to help these players. Either put them in touch with the right people or actually make the loans to the players themselves. If the union runs low on funds the named plaintiffs could always loan the union some money so it could loan it to the players. The named plaintiffs are doing this all for the little guy anyway, right? Loan that long snapper or kicker some money at below market rates to make it through the lockout.

    Seems like the top end players who are “doing it for the past/future players” really don’t care about the guys who don’t have the multimillion dollar contracts.

    That said, plenty of people in the US make do on 1/10th of minimum NFL wages so anyone who needs a loan only needs it because they didn’t budget their money wisely.

  7. Maybe if the players actually finished a college education they would understand the concept of credit and how high interest rates affect them. Then they could get by on their $10M every year and wouldn’t have to fight owners to get more than they already underservingly get.

  8. So at my job of nearly 10 years, a decent salary, a home, paid for car, and four kids, I have it better than NFL players. Thanks for the reinforcment of my thoughts all along!

  9. As D. Smith and the elite NFL players try to squeeze every last penny out of the owners for themselves, its mid/low-level players and especially current free agents that get hurt the most. Way to go NFLPA, keep working for your members.

  10. “Come on down right now to Big Louie’s Quickie Loan and Bail Bond Service! No credit? No problem! Just bring in your latest pay stub and set of $10k Asanti rims as collateral, and your loan is guaranteed!”

    “Here at Big Louie’s, we understand modern day slavery, and we want to help. Boss won’t let you work, because you’re unwilling to take a small pay cut from you multi-million dollar annual salary? Need a little something extra to carry you over for your child support payments? Maybe YOU JUST have to make it rain this Friday night! Well, Big Louie is your man!”

    “Every Big Louie loan of over $100, 000 comes with our complementary, one time ‘Dez Bryant Special’: a one-of-a-kind Big Louie original diamond earring and gold chain! Act now, and we’ll throw in a liter of purple drank! You can’t lose!”

  11. Oh here we go again with all of these funny PFT peeps ragging on the players. Boo hoo people. You are just as broke as they are. It’s 2011, hardly anyone is well off. It’s life. It’s not a bad thing. No one who comments on here manages money well. Doesn’t matter if you make 50k or 900k. Thanks for the laughs though. Tough guys.

  12. bunjy96 says:
    Apr 13, 2011 9:53 AM
    Players made their bed, now they have to lay in it.

    Actually their maids make the bed for them.

    Maybe they shouldn’t have bought everything with cash money, and decided to build some sort of credit history. And with most banks, depending on your banking history with them, you can get a loan at a rate around 9-15 % without having great credit.

  13. Why is it called predatory lending if someone makes a bad deal on a loan but it isn’t called predatory concessioning when I pay $7 for a beer at a football game? You make a bad deal, it’s your own fault.

  14. I doubt that these guys NEED these loans to get through the lockout. They WANT these loans so that they can continue to lead extravagant lifestyles during the lockout.

    They would rather borrow money at 24% than turn in their Escalades and drive around in Honda Civics for the next 6-18 months. There’s nothing predatory or unfair about them agreeing to borrow money at 24% if that’s what they choose to do.

  15. Not to get all Christian-y here, BUT…

    it says pretty clearly in the Bible if you’re not good stewards with your money, you don’t deserve it (and more importantly God’s not gonna give it to you)

    Also, what the hell are the agents doing for their 15%? Aren’t they supposed to take care of these guys?

  16. Agree with the comment that the Union or Association should have had a plan in place to aid the players financially. Even though I think it’s beyond ludicrous for most of these guys to have money and credit issues, their panicking already and going to people who are basically loansharks will not help the NFLPA* stay united to achieve their goals.

  17. Welcome to the real world boys! Banks and Lenders have been ripping off the little man with high interest loans for decades.

    No pity here. If these idiots can’t manage their generous salaries better to be able to make it a few months………sucks to be them!

  18. The solution is for all of us to switch salaries with all of them for a year, and we’ll see if we can get by with their money. Just to be fair and all….

  19. Good for them. What a ridiculous lack of financial and personal discipline. These guys knew the lockout was coming for a long time and they never saved a cushion? I get better terms from my bookie down at the barber shop. Too funny.

  20. @ metaleffect85, I am not sure what you really meant when you said no one on here manages their money well. I can not speak for everyone on here but I for think that I HAVE indeed managed my money well. Hence the good credit with a growing savings account, 2 cars and a mortgage. So do not make generalized statements that you have no clue how to even prove. I feel no sympathy for these over paid crybabies. I have achieved so much more on a much smaller budget than 80% of the NFL players. If they can not live within their means and they have to take a loan with a high interest rate so be it. I mean they have to live right?!?!

  21. Its the players own damn fault, they should hold onto their money like its gold, but instead they buy the houses, cars, and bling, all depreciable assets.

    I blame the players for not listening to their agents in regards to financial restraint, for not paying attention at the rookie symposium, and for letting their ego get the best of them

  22. The players are in a position to take care of their families for several generations. They can potentially rewrite the lives of their descendants while also vindicating the lives of their ancestors.

    Instead, they choose to give the money back to the white man as fast as humanely possible.

  23. Most of these guys have had agents/business managers working (supposedly for them) since entering the league. Where were these people? Their college coaches who knew they were destined for the NFL? How about them? Their own families (many likely came from absent-parent backgrounds with no direction, teaching, mentoring, etc., visa vi money management)?
    The culture they live in is to blame as well — it encourages thousand $$ stripbar bills, extravagant jewelry, car, home collections, etc.
    Let DeMaurice Smith and his posse of fellow jackals (lawyers) justify to the players not named Brady, Brees and Manning the untold haul of cash they’re going to walk away with while they have to be vultures for 30% interest loans.
    And no matter what level of support they’ve had in the past and now, or lack thereof, they’re all supposed to be adults in our society — so unfortunately they, like you and me, have to live with the consequences of our actions/decisions.

  24. Raiderguy a college education doesn’t mean you understand finance unless your degree has something to do with finance. I bet a lot of college graduates got taken in the stock market scam.

    This about poor decision making period. Most Americans fall in the same category as these players. Most Americans live beyond their means and don’t understand finance or government. With that said, I believe the low end NFL player makes two or three hundred thousand. It’s inexcusable that they would already be having money problems considering the owners opted out of the contract two years ago and the players knew this lockout was coming.

  25. What a joke, welcome to the real world. They might have to sell one of their cars or diamond watches and ear rings, these are tough times guys.

  26. Hey Peyton, you just added fuel to the most of the bible is nonsense fire. If god rewards people that take care of their money. Explain why the richest people in the country keep being rewarded for taking advantage of the rest of the country. Over the last 30 years, the richest and most corrupt have prospered. Compare the bible with current events. Stock market scams have ruined many that thought they were taking care of their money. A real God wouldn’t care about money.

    Maybe some of these players can sell some of their kids into slavery since the bible says that’s cool. No interest rates there.

  27. The NCAA should take note and at the very least have basic courses in the very little time players are at their “higher learning institutions”. This would help them understand stuff like basic life skills, how to protect themselves from the media, predatory lenders, basic financial planning skills, maybe even small business schooling.

    Also I think it should be a rule if you hand out a scholarship, it should be 4 years and deferrable to a later date. If the player is injured, or wants to take classes in the summer once he is on an NFL Team, he should be able to go back free of charge and finish his degree.

    It just isn’t right schools are cashing in on these guys and not preparing them for what happens in real life after they leave.

    The NCAA can’t play God and go investigating every team for paying players, when they are doing little if anything to protect players and cashing in off them at the same time.

    If you want to have a class action lawsuit (forget going after the NFL), I would encourage a lawyer to get involved and change the system when it comes to College Sports (particularly football and basketball). The system is antiquated and has not kept up with the realities of our evolving society. I respect the need to keep some purity in the game, but if you want to talk predatory, the NCAA meets that definition and them some in the way they do business.

    I’m not a huge proponent of using racial terminology; in fact I think it’s usually inflammatory and runs contrary to trying to solve the racial dilemma in our country. But if Adrian Peterson wants to call any institution a close parallel to slavery, the NCAA system comes pretty darn close, here you have a system that uses players for their physical talents, doesn’t pay them, players have no representation in how the system is managed, players are discarded when they are no longer useful, the bowl games have so many levels of corruption it makes Chicago in the 1920’s look tame by comparison, and the NCAA does everything in its power to cover up these facts and strong arm players, coaches, and schools to keep themselves in power and control.

  28. DING DING DING! And the winner for first rant against anything religious is dcbroncoor.

    Lighten up Francis – (and btw, God doesn’t care about the money so much as the personal responsibility)

  29. Help me understand why the players need loans to live? Don’t they ever save for a rainy day? People can’t get loans for houses but these players can get loans to continue to play video games and drive fast cars. They are always crying that their careers aren’t very long yet they make a few pucks during this time, with no concept to save for their future. I can’t shake my head hard enough.

  30. I can feel sorry for the poor factory worker who got layed off. I feel for the painters that can’t make a living because they can’t compete with Mexicans who will paint an entire house for $100.00.
    But I’ll be darned if I feel one ounce of pity for these six figure divas that can’t make it from pay check to pay check without being able to save for a rainy day.

  31. How are you going to allow that racist comment about giving back to the white man and not my rebuttal? I understand some stuff needs to be left off of here but if you are going to let that garbage stand then you should let the other side pointing his stupidity stand as well.

  32. 24%? Heck, the Mafia offers better rates than that.

    Of course, having the Mob grant the loans would be a conflict of interest as they seem to be in bed with Roger Goodell.

    That’s the only reason I can see that Roger is so insistent that injury reports be made public – so that the Las Vegas Line and the Mafia’s interest in the point spread and outcome is a prime issue of concern for coaches who would rather keep that information private.

  33. eaglesfan290 says:
    Apr 13, 2011 11:52 AM
    Also I think it should be a rule if you hand out a scholarship, it should be 4 years and deferrable to a later date. If the player is injured, or wants to take classes in the summer once he is on an NFL Team, he should be able to go back free of charge and finish his degree.
    Under the old CBA, players received tuition reimbursement to finish their degrees, so they had a second chance to do it for free, courtesy of the NFL. Perks like they got need to be figured into what they receive revenue % wise. Cost of employment encompasses everything from training needed to insurance to any other benefits they get that they don’t have to pay for, or pay for at reduced rates.

  34. They can just run up their credit cards to the limit and save a couple percent interest and THEN file for bankruptcy. Dopes! Shut up and accept what your employer is offering or go get another job, you idiots.

  35. fiesty made my point. they can max out credit cards. they can also eat bling. no, waitt…

  36. Funny that Derrick Mason was saying the players will be alright, i guess he didnt get the memo. Speak for yourself #whatajoke

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