Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford has posted one winning season, been to the playoffs once and taken a ton of undue criticism about how he wears his hat. In the monetary world, though, hardly anyone is beating him.
Forbes released its yearly list of the world's highest-paid athletes this week and while no one is touching boxer Floyd "Money" Mayweather or soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo in the dollars game, Stafford is faring well among football players.
The magazine has Stafford as the No.2 highest-paid player in 2014 and No. 18 overall, a few places behind Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan, who is No. 10 overall. The magazine has Ryan at $43.8 million overall and Stafford at $33 million overall.
Among the athletes he is better compensated than? Kevin Durant ($31.9 million); Peyton Manning ($27.1 milion); Dale Earnhardt Jr. ($25.9 million) and another name very familiar to Detroit fans -- Tigers infielder Miguel Cabrera ($24.6 million).
Whether Stafford is worth that kind of money can be debated and has been since he signed his contract extension prior to last season, but Detroit has turned him into one of the richest athletes in the world. Of that, there is no doubt.
In an added wrinkle, the NFL is sending its two most well-compensated players on the Forbes list to London this fall to face each other when Atlanta and Detroit play in England in October.
And one other thing to note -- while no other Lions are on the list this year, that might change in 2015. Depending on what Ndamukong Suh's contract is like (and if he re-signs with the Lions), he might end up on the Forbes 100 athlete list in the future as well.
Here is how Forbes came up with their numbers.