4 NFL players who save more than 70 percent of their salaries

NFL player who retired to get a PhD from MIT drives a used hatchback

The average NFL salary is $2.1 million, according to Forbes. Still, an alarming 15 percent of NFL players end up declaring bankruptcy.

A handful of financially savvy players are making sure they won't fall into that category. Here are four current and former NFL stars who are also pros when it comes to money.

Glover Quin

Detroit Lions safety Glover Quin (27) runs with the ball after intercepting a pass during game action between the Minnesota Vikings and Detroit Lions.
Scott W. Grau | Icon Sportswire | Corbis | Getty Images

The Detroit Lions safety, who earns an average of $6.5 million a year, has been saving 70 percent of his take-home pay since he was drafted in 2009.

He's smart with his investments too, and he has plans to double his income by investing.

The plan has always been to "save as much money as I can and spend as little as I can in the time that I have in the league," Quin tells CNBC Make It, "so that I can maximize my future."

Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski
Tom Szczerbowski | Getty Images

As of 2015, The New England Patriots star had saved a full 100 percent of his NFL salary.

"To this day, I still haven't touched one dime of my signing bonus or NFL contract money," Gronkowski writes in his 2015 book "It's Good to be Gronk." Instead, he lives off his endorsement deals, including ones with BodyArmor SuperDrink, Dunkin' Donuts and beef jerky company Oberto.

"I live off my marketing money and haven't blown it on any big-money expensive cars, expensive jewelry or tattoos and still wear my favorite pair of jeans from high school," continues Gronkowski, who signed a six-year, $54 million contract with the Patriots in 2012. That contract came with an $8 million signing bonus.

John Urschel

Former NFL player John Urschel
Nicole Craine | Getty Images

Even during Urschel's peak earning years, in which he was making $600,000, the offensive lineman chose to live on less than $25,000 a year and drive a used Nissan.

That means the NFL star was living off of just 4 percent of his salary at the time and banking the rest.

Urschel, who retired from football at age 26 in 2017, is now pursuing his doctorate at MIT.

Ryan Broyles

Wide receiver Ryan Broyles speaks during an event to educate teens about financial responsibility
Tom Williams | Getty Images

The wide receiver, who signed a $3.6 million rookie contract with the Lions, $1.1 million of which was guaranteed, has lived on about $60,000 a year throughout his career. He stashed the rest of his money in investments and retirement savings accounts.

A football career can be over in a split second, says Broyles, who is currently a free agent: "The goal was to play 10 years in the NFL. But financially, I planned like I wouldn't make it past the next 10 minutes."

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