10 NFL Star Homes You Can Own
The pros were back in zebra stripes last weekend, but plenty of the pros they officiate are looking for a few good football fans to fill their shoes. And shoe closets. And walk-in closets. And man caves.
Transience is just part of a professional athlete's job description. NFL players get traded, cut and put out to pasture each year and ex-NFL stars move just as much while chasing broadcast jobs, career opportunities and cash to pay back creditors. That makes the high-end real estate market a melange of young players' starter homes, veteran mansions bought a team ago and NFL legends' Hall Of Fame homesteads in need of downsizing.
With help from real estate sites Zillow(Z) and Trulia, we thumbed through the listings and found nine properties NFL players past and present have put up for grabs recently. Take off the replica jersey and bring the checkbook:
Warren Sapp's discount Florida mansion
Asking price: The highest bid
How do you go from one of the most intense, vociferous and well-paid defensive linemen in the game to losing your national championship and Super Bowl rings, having less than $900 in your checking account and being buried under nearly $7 million in debt? You can ask Warren Sapp, but it may be the only topic Sapp won't expound on at high volume. Sapp earned $77 million during his career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Oakland Raiders, but a series of bad investments, lax tax payments and alimony and child support obligations put Sapp in the red. He has filed for bankruptcy, has a lien against his earnings and has to sell his 240-pair, size 15 sneaker collection as part of a court-ordered asset liquidation.
He's also being forced to auction off his house. It was already on the market for $3.8 million. Given the state of Florida's floundering real estate market, his 10,000-square-foot, four-bedroom, six-and-a-half-bath home in Windmere will likely fetch far less at a U.S. Bantruptcy Court-ordered auction Nov. 1.
Ray Rice's Baltimore starter home
Asking price: $339,900
Baltimore Ravens feature running back Ray Rice just signed a $40 million contract extension this summer. He put up 101 yards and a touchdown in a win over his team's hated rivals, the New England Patriots, two weeks ago. Last week he ran for more than 80 yards against Cleveland for the sixth-straight time. So why is he still living in an empty-nester condo in Pikesville?
Ray and his teammates have likely asked the same question since he got his big payday. Teammate Ray Lewis owns a 28-acre estate in Reisterstown that makes Rice's 2,100-square-foot hovel look like a walk-in closet. To keep up with Lewis and his own pay grade, Rice put his four-bedroom, three-and-a-half bathroom pad on the market for the bargain price of $339,900. That's a bit less than the $350,000 he paid for it in 2008, but with homes in Pikesville losing near 6% of their value in the last year, it may be the price Rice has to pay to sprint to greener pastures.