Steve Young To Earn More Than $1,000,000 Per Year Through 2027 On Old USFL Contract

Steve Young USFL

All the way back in 1984, Steve Young signed a contract with the Los Angeles Express of the long-defunct United States Football League that is about to start paying off for him quite handsomely:

Thanks to a forward-thinking contract Young signed with the upstart USFL, the Hall of Fame quarterback will be getting paid through 2027. Starting on January 1, Young will get $1 million per year and the total will escalate until $3.2 million by the time it ends.

Young signed a $40 million deal out of BYU with the Los Angeles Express. The massive contract was the result of a bidding war between Express owner  J. William Oldenburg, New Jersey Generals owner Donald Trump and the NFL. In the end, money, both upfront and deferred, won out. Young would get all the money, but spread out the final $36 million over more than 40 years.

Celebritynetworth.com explains:

After his bonus, Steve would earn just $200,000 in year one, $280,000 in year two, $330,000 in year four and $400,000 in year five. The remaining $30 million would be deferred over 37 years starting when Steve turned 28 and ending when he was 65 in the year 2027. The contract was backloaded, which meant that the payments would escalate to $1 million per year in 2014, then $2.4 million and eventually topping out at $3.173 million in the contract’s final years.

Young eventually bought himself out of his USFL contract, but the backloaded annuity still remained.

Nice work if you can get it, I suppose

FILED UNDER: Quick Takes, Sports
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Nice work if you can get it, I suppose

    Doug, is he actually working for it? (never mind) So much for the superior intellect of the 1%. These people are stupid. STUPID.

  2. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: And just to demonstrate stupidity squared, who would you rather have: A descending Albert Pujols for the next 10 years at a cost of $20 mil plus per year, or an ascending Michael Wacha at a fixed cost of $2 mil or less per year for the next 4 or 5 years?

    You can’t fix stupid.

    (best thing the Cards ever did was let Pujols go. And I loved that guy.)

  3. @OzarkHillbilly:

    (1) The closing quip is a line from a song.

    (2) Hey, Young managed to get $40 million in 1984. Even backloaded, that’s a hell of a deal.

  4. Pinky says:

    Genius. A lot of players earn $$ during their first couple of years, then spend the rest of their lives broke. Good for him.

  5. PD Shaw says:

    I wonder who is this entity called the LA. Express, and why isn’t it bankrupt and paying squat?

  6. @Pinky:

    Also pretty smart of him to convert the contract to an annuity before the USFL went belly up and he became just another claimant in Bankruptcy Court.

  7. PD Shaw says:

    OK, OK, Doug, I missed the annuity part.

  8. James Pearce says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Also pretty smart of him to convert the contract to an annuity before the USFL went belly up and he became just another claimant in Bankruptcy Court.

    Indeed, but a $40 million contract in 1984? No wonder that league went bankrupt.

  9. 11B40 says:

    Greetings:

    He’s lucky he’s not French. The social justice rulers over their want to take 75% of their “footballers” earnings.

    You remember social justice, don’t you. It’s what Lenin and Stalin brought to Russia, no ???

  10. RGardner says:

    And he will tithe 10% – good for him.

  11. James Joyner says:

    @James Pearce: The USFL paid outrageous contracts to lure Herschel Walker, Steve Young, Jim Kelly, and other high-profile stars to their league right out of college. It was a gamble that didn’t pay off but one that instantly made them interesting. I watched a lot of their games.

  12. Rick DeMent says:

    @11B40:

    You remember social justice, don’t you. It’s what Lenin and Stalin brought to Russia, no ???

    Not really, what they brought to Russia was a brutal dictatorship that served the ruling elite rather then the people, kind of like what the tea party is going for here.

  13. jib10 says:

    @PD Shaw: I believe that most of the big contracts in the USFL were personal contracts between the players and owners, not the players and the teams. This was to protect the players in case (when) the league went under.

    Rich people have too much money and when you have too much of anything, you waste it. This is one of the more entertaining ways that they bleed off excess capital.

  14. Franklin says:

    1) Ha, the topic of the USFL just came up at work last week. Michigan Panthers fan here: we were the first year champions!

    2) Why am I not surprised that The Donald was involved in the failed USFL? I mean, clearly he’s a brilliant businessman, right?

    3) Steve Young is a super-genius. EDIT: strike that, see below.

  15. Franklin says:

    UPDATE: Click the link and you’ll see that Steve Young is no longer a super-genius. That annuity was never funded.

  16. wr says:

    @Doug Mataconis: “Also pretty smart of him to convert the contract to an annuity before the USFL went belly up and he became just another claimant in Bankruptcy Court. ”

    Yes. If only all those government workers had been able to do the same thing before their employers decided to gamble their pension plans with the crooks peddling shoddy investments and before the politicians involved decided to systematically underfund them. Then we wouldn’t all have to pretend that working people trying to collect deferrred compensation are all parasites stealing from Real Americans.