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How many NFL players receive salary in bitcoin? Odell Beckham Jr. joins list

Cleveland Browns v Baltimore Ravens
Cleveland Browns v Baltimore Ravens
Ian Van Roy
ANALYST

Ignoring Bitcoin, Odell Beckham Jr. simply joining the Los Angeles Rams was the most covered aspect in the media. However, his salary should not be glossed over. The former Giants and Browns receiver will be receiving his salary with the Rams in bitcoin, according to media reports.

Beckham joins a growing list of players who are opting to get paid in cryptocurrency. The list is still short but it is growing. Here's a look at every NFL player getting paid in Bitcoin.

#1 - Odell Beckham Jr., WR, Los Angeles Rams

The most recent and high-profile player to get paid in bitcoin, Beckham is one player who isn't causing any surprise by going with the trendy currency over Uncle Sam's old-fashioned greenback. Additionally, Beckham has appeared in plenty of advertisements for new trendy tech like headphones over the years. This season, Beckham is expected to make $1.25 million, according to Spotrac.

Kind of crazy how much #bitcoin is catching on in the sporting world! bitcoinmagazine.com/business/nfl-s…

In 2021 so far, Beckham has caught 19 passes for 250 yards and no touchdowns. To make good on his contract, Beckham will need to step up after only catching two passes for 18 yards so far with the Los Angeles Rams. He left the Browns because he wasn't getting targeted enough and is now running into the same issue in LA. He will be hoping to see more action as he gets more familiar with the playbook.

#2 - Russell Okung, OT, Carolina Panthers

Russell Okung is still a free agent, but his last deal in the NFL saw remuneration in bitcoin. According to Fox Business, Okung received half of his $13 million salary in bitcoin. He is believed to be the first player in any major sports league to do so. He is one of the biggest advocates for the cryptocurrency in any field.

We've got another one. 🏈🏈🏈@obj joins @RussellOkung, @saquon, @TomBrady, and @culkin22 in taking a Bitcoin salary. twitter.com/BitcoinMagazin…

Now out of the league, Okung's last stop was with the Carolina Panthers in 2020. With the team, the then-32-year-old tackle played 406 snaps, incurred four penalties and gave up three sacks. In other words, he averaged a sack or a penalty roughly once every 50 snaps, or once per game.

At this point, having been out of the league since his bitcoin-laden contract ended, Okung's time in the NFL appears to have drawn to a close.

#3 - Sean Culkin, TE, Kansas City Chiefs

Sean Culkin was once an aspiring tight-end looking to make the Chiefs' roster in 2021. Had he made the roster, he would have made $920,000, according to USA Today. However, he ended up failing to make the cut and did not receive the $920,000.

Oakland Raiders v Los Angeles Chargers
Oakland Raiders v Los Angeles Chargers

Speaking to Newsweek, Culkin was open about his decision.

"Considering my career — particularly its physical demands, and brevity — it makes the most logical sense to be paid in sound money that I believe protects its purchasing power over time. I want to at least make a something that is going to benefit me because I believe that it's going to appreciate over time," Culkin said. "This is a long-term play. I'm not suggesting that everyone allocate 100% of their salaries to Bitcoin. This is a decision I made after seriously considering my current wealth and expected expenses in the near term."

Culkin's whereabouts are unknown. He hasn't played in a game since 2020 when he was with the Baltimore Ravens.

Bonus - Tom Brady and Saquon Barkley

Although many are claiming that Tom Brady and Saquon Barkley are getting paid in bitcoin, both have merely expressed a desire to be paid in bitcoin. No known concrete steps have been taken to convert their salaries into cryptocurrency.


Edited by Piyush Bisht
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