25 Athletes Who Are Overpaid and Make Far Too Much Money

Charlie Blacks II December 21st 2015 Sports
Athletes are the gladiators of our time. The kids look up to them, guys imitate them, and the girls… well, just keep the pro-athletes away from your ladies. Regardless, these athletes are paid millions of dollars to compete against each other in order to determine who is the best in the world. It’s difficult to put a monetary value on talent, hard work, and natural ability but somehow these team owners have created a formula that determines the worth of a particular athlete. Unfortunately, sometimes this formula is horribly wrong and athletes are unpredictable in their performance, health, and circumstances causing them to become a part of the overpaid crew. This list is dedicated to the athletes that just might have made or are making a little more than they’re actually worth.

1. Ryan Howard | Philadelphia Phillies | $125 Million/5 years

Ryan Howard started his career off hot by winning the NL Rookie of the Year and the very next year winning the MVP award. He also was a huge contributing factor to the Phillies during their back-to-back appearances in the World Series, in which they won in 2008. It would make sense to extend the guys contract with a hefty pay increase, right? Unfortunately, after he received his 5 year, $125 million extension in 2010 his play took an extreme nosedive and is officially considered overpaid. In 2014, Ryan led the league in strikeouts, this year he batted a .229 with 23 homers and a total of 77 RBIs. These is extremely disappointing and his contract makes him nearly impossible to trade. Only six players have a higher average salary than Howard for the time being, we recommend he pick up the play.

2. Jayson Werth | Washington Nationals | $126 Million/7 years

Former teammate of Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth has also made the list. The past two seasons the outfielder’s play has been rather impressive, but after signing with the Washington Nationals in 2010 for big money, his play of this year has been suffering. With a slash line of .228, .313, .402, Jayson has been struck out more than one-fifth of the times he appears up to bat. He also has a WAR of 0.0, proving that he hasn’t improved the team’s overall status among the league. Definitely not acceptable if your base salary pay is $21 million for the year. Then again, the guy has only had one bad year, let’s hope he picks it up next season.

3. Alex Rodriguez | New York Yankees | $275 Million/10 years

Ok, we all know the name, and we know he can play but with the past two years do you really think that this contract is justifiable? Last year, the shortstop tainted his legacy by using performance enhancing drugs and was suspended for the entire 2014 season. This year, Alex was paid a base salary of $21 million and obviously wasn’t himself after missing an entire season on the field. With the Yankees signing Chase Headley this past season, many questions have risen about the star’s future role with the team. During this year’s season, A-Rod took the backseat as a designated hitter and backup corner infielder. With his athleticism declining, two hip surgeries, and not being the game changer he once was at a younger age, it appears that he is unworthy of his hundreds of million dollars.

4. Jay Cutler | Chicago Bears | $126 Million/7 years

Alright… we could all agree that this contract is just disgusting. Seriously, Jay Cutler shouldn’t be making this amount of money. For a guy who has won only one playoff game in nine seasons, he sure has one hell of a financial team behind him in order to get the Bears owners to cough up the NFL’s most heftiest NFL contract at the moment. Jay is known for being turnover prone and also not stacking up too much passing yardage, so we’re extremely confused as to how he was able to pull this deal off. Last year, Cutler had a base salary of $18.5 million dollars and ranked dead last in bang for your buck yardage amongst every quarterback in the league. What’s even crazier is that a lot of his money is guaranteed within his contract. We think the Bears might be regretting this one.

5. Jonathan Stewart | Carolina Panthers | $36.5 Million/5 years

The running back position is one of the most physically tasking in professional sports. We understand why a lot of starting running backs would want to be paid handsomely for their services but what about ones who never really starter material to begin with? Well, in 2012, Jonathan Stewart was able to talk the front offices into the fifth largest running back deal of all time. Stewart signed an extension contract with the Carolina Panthers worth $36.5 million for a total of five years. After signing the contract, Stewart went on to rush just 1,325 yards in three seasons, all of which he suffered injuries during that time period. Even though we’re in the midst of this current season, keep an eye on the running back and see if his impact is worth his massive contract. We’re pretty sure Cam Newton is going to be aiming for even more dollars himself with his current play.

6. Mike Wallace | Miami Dolphins | $60 Million/5 years

Mike Wallace might want to give Ben Roethlisberger a call and thank him for his new found wealth because… Mike is overpaid. While in Pittsburgh the Roethlisberger / Wallace combo led to special attention during games to the opposing defense. The pair averaged 8 touchdowns and a little over 1,000 yards over four seasons. We’ll give it to Wallace for being a deep threat with soft hands but apparently things didn’t translate the same way in Miami with a shaky Ryan Tannehill making the play calls. The deal went down in March of 2013 but as of now, Wallace is a part of the Minnesota Vikings depth chart after a trade took place for Wallace and a 7th round draft pick for a Minnesota 5th round draft pick. Things didn’t work out for the Miami franchise, we could say the same for Minnesota being that Teddy Bridgewater is not known for his arm, where Wallace is known to make his mark as a deep threat.

7. Patrick Peterson | Arizona Cardinals | $70 Million/5 years

Patrick Peterson is one of the league’s best cornerbacks out there, but $70 million is taxing for any franchise to invest in just one defensive player. It all started in the summer of 2014 after Peterson and cornerback of the Seattle Seahawks, Richard Sherman, bickered back and forth over who was the better cornerback and after Peterson saw Sherman’s $57 million contract extension, Peterson began to pressure the Cardinals organization into a larger contract. All in all, Peterson got what he wanted but didn’t produce the necessary results in the 2014-15 season. He was ranked the 69th cornerback out of 108, he gave up 8 touchdowns, the third highest of any corner that year, and was penalized a lot. In fact he drew 13 flags, the fourth highest of any corner that year. Peterson is still battling to earn his contract this year, but here’s the kicker… the contract isn’t in effect until next season!

8. Enes Kanter | Oklahoma City Thunder | $70 Million/4 years

No offense Enes, but not a lot of people know who you are… except for us obviously, after all you are the topic of discussion. This took place after the Portland Trail Blazers lost out on LaMarcus Aldridge and the organization was struggling to find a replacement for their all star, so they offered OKC’s Enes Kanter a whopping $70 million for four years, in which the Thunder did match. Ok now, we don’t know too much about the front office of the Thunder but, somehow they were willing to let James Harden go but yet put up the big bucks for a big man who only averages 10 PPG and 6 rebounds. It’s also funny because they traded Harden in order to avoid the luxury tax, but with Kanter’s contract on the books, they’ll be highly taxed for years to come. The guy does have a nice jumper and is a solid contributor but definitely not worth the money.

9. Reggie Jackson | Detroit Pistons | $80 Million/5 years

Another Oklahoma City affiliate with a wild contract goes to the Detroit Pistons’ very own Reggie Jackson. Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat… this kid can ball. He proved it when Russell Westbrook went down with an ACL tear and was forced to become the starting point guard for the Thunder. After the 2014-2015 season was wrapped up, the Thunder let go of the guard to free agency and Detroit hopped on the opportunity to throw Reggie the big bucks, and like a wise man Jackson took the cash offer. Jackson is the Pistons’ leading scorer but NBA analysts have noticed that the point guard is a shoot-first type of player and needs to work on getting others involved on the court. Looking at Detroit’s horrible start of the season, we’re thinking that they should’ve reworked Jackson’s contract in order to attract more weapons to the basketball franchise.

10. Khris Middleton | Milwaukee Bucks | $70 Million/5 years

Here’s another NBA player who very few know of but is wildly overpaid… Khris Middleton of the Milwaukee Bucks. Sorry buddy, but everybody knows that your contract is crazily inappropriate for your skill set. A lot of NBA insiders are saying that it was ‘inside job’ due to the fact that Bucks head coach, Jason Kidd, is represented by the same agent as Middleton. We find this to be believable being that the guy averages only 13 PPG and isn’t what you would consider an impact player. Prior to signing his current deal, Middleton was considered a $8-10 million per contract type of player. Middleton should enjoy it while he has it because a deal like this definitely isn’t come his way again.

11. Josh Hamilton | Los Angeles Angels | $125 Million/5 years

Back in 2013 the Angels were determined to get the franchise a huge playoff push with the acquisitions of Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton. Unfortunately as the record shows the Angels were nowhere near a World Series championship. What makes things even worse is that the Angels invested so much into Hamilton just for him to not live up to his potential. In his 2013 season he had a .250 batting average, 144 hits and 21 home runs. Doesn’t hurt enough yet? Well, in 2010 his batting average was at a solid .359 while with the Texas Rangers and also won MVP that year. He was later traded back to the Texans after Hamilton relapsed on drugs and remained a liability to the team. What a waste…

12. Albert Pujols | Los Angeles Angels | $254 Million/10 years

Former teammate of Josh Hamilton, Albert Pujols has made the list as well for obvious reasons. Now at 35 years old we don’t know if Albert Pujols can push a team over the edge like he did back when he was with the St. Louis Cardinals. The Angels invested far too much money into a pipe dream that Pujols was always going to be an elite hitter and over the years his play has declined. In 2012, Pujols recorded career lows in walks, homers, and isolated power [slugging percentage minus batting average.] He also had his worst strikeout percentage since he was a rookie. If that’s not bad enough, Pujols also missed a numerous amount of games due to injury. Father time is no joke… we’re confused as to why the Angels organization thought it would be a good idea to give an aging all star all that money.

13. Prince Fielder | Texas Rangers | $144 Million/6 years

Every time Prince Fielder’s name is brought up, we think about that naked ESPN Magazine cover, ugh… creepy. Anyway, we’re talking bad contracts and numbers here, and Prince’s contract with the Rangers is one of the worst. Even though the Detroit Tigers will be paying $30 million of this contract we’re pretty sure the Rangers organization is second guessing their decision to sign the once upon a time slugger. Think about it, even in his prime, Fielder was a liability on defense, he’s never been known as a runner, and hasn’t been good at anything other than just hitting. It’s strange that Fielder was offered this kind of money especially when his numbers had began to slip in 2013. To make matters worse, Prince only played 62 games with the Rangers during his first season with the team due to a neck injury. Neck injuries are serious, health is wealth, and we wish nothing but the best for both Prince fielder and the Texas Rangers.

14. Donald Butler | San Diego Chargers | $51.8 Million/7 years

This one is strange because the San Diego Chargers usually aren’t fans of actually paying good money to their star talent. It’s also funny because they finally decided to pay somebody and it happened to be a mediocre linebacker by the name of Donald Butler. During his first three years with the Chargers, Butler showed some flashes of potential and quickly became a go-to product on the Chargers defense. Unfortunately, as soon as he signed a contract extension with the team before the beginning of the 2014-15 season his production dropped tremendously. That year he was ranked the 57th middle linebacker out of the 60 who qualified in the league. Also, last season was the first time he did not record a single interception as well. Fortunately for the Chargers, Butler’s contract contains an out clause for the 2017 season.

15. Dashon Goldson | Tampa Bay Buccaneers | $41.3 Million/5 years

You might have heard the name before but can’t really make out the face of this particular player, and that’s ok. A lot of football fans are unfamiliar with the name Dashon Goldson. He is currently under contract with the Washington Redskins but the original paperwork was drawn up under the financial team of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2013. This little tid-bit of information alone can tell you that Goldson didn’t live up to his contract. Dashon Goldson is known for his aggressive, spearheading style of play but while in Tampa Bay, under Lovie Smith’s Tampa Two defense, Goldson was not a good fit. In fact he was traded to the Washington Redskins just two years into his contract to replace Ryan Clark in Washington who was rated the worst safety in the league, right behind, guess who… Dashon Goldson. Goldson was only traded for a sixth round draft pick, so that tells you how bad he was right there. At one time Goldson was a Pro Bowler, let’s hope he returns to form so he could get another hefty contract… maybe not one this large but you what we mean.

16. Riley Cooper | Philadelphia Eagles | $22.5 Million/5 years

A lot of us are confused as to why the Eagles went on a fire sale last year releasing a lot of their top tier talent and keeping guys like… Riley Cooper. In some ways we understand, he was a good sidekick to the streaking DeSean Jackson at one point in time but having Cooper as the Eagles number one receiver has just not worked out. His contract may not sound as bad some of the others on this list but his performance as an athlete may be the worst per dollar amount he is receiving every pay check. Last season he mustered up these lousy numbers, 577 total receiving yards, 55 receptions, and just 3 touchdowns. As this current season continues he still hasn’t been living up to those duckets the Eagles shelled out for him. No wonder he was so angry at that Kenny Chesney concert…

17. Brook Lopez | Brooklyn Nets | $63.5 Million/3 years

Seriously Brooklyn? Why? Don’t get us wrong, Brook Lopez can fill a stat sheet and is a double-double machine but they paid Brook so much that they had no other assets to pay any other high profile talent to join the basketball organization. Let’s face reality here, the Nets are in total rebuild mode and instead of letting the, at the time free agent Brook Lopez, walk they offered him a ridiculous amount of money. We would understand the investment if the team was actually winning games but we think they could have saved the cash, let Lopez walk, and tanked for a good pick in the draft. Lopez is also a high injury risk player, someone his size with constant foot problems isn’t bound to be that effective or reliable. To each his own though…

18. Derrick Rose | Chicago Bulls | $94.3 Million/5 years

Ok, this one should be obvious to everyone, so we’ll keep it short and sweet. We all know the potential Derrick Rose had when he initially entered the league. The explosiveness, the basketball IQ, and the smooth jumper wow’d players and fans alike all across the country. Unfortunately, Rose has had two season ending injuries and only has played 100 games out of a possible 312 over the last four seasons. Luckily this season he’s been a little more durable even though he is currently rocking a face mask due to orbital fracture under his eye. His contract would make even more sense if the Bulls were able to get past Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers and actually compete for an NBA title though.

19. Joe Johnson | Atlanta Hawks | $123 Million/6 years

Joe Johnson showed so much potential at one time he was compared to some of the greatest two guards there are in professional basketball. Then the summer 2010 happened… the Atlanta Hawks thought it would be a good idea to label him with the franchise tag. After failing to get past the 2nd round of the playoffs year in and year out with Joe being their go-to star, they realized they made a mistake by offering such a wild amount of money. Fortunately, the Hawks franchise was able to pawn off the shooting guard to the Brooklyn Nets and they are now responsible for paying for Johnson’s last season on the contract which is a whopping $24.8 million for this current season. What makes things even worse is that Joe only averaged 14 point per game last season with the Nets. Joe’s 34 years old now and we don’t think he’ll see another pay day that lucrative again.

20. Kobe Bryant | Los Angeles Lakers | $48.5 Million/2 years

This one may be the most painful of all to admit, but this is proof that all good things must come to an end… Then again, this may be one of the most arguable mentions on the list. Ok, so Kobe is currently a shell of himself due to the fact he has been riddled with two season ending injuries during the decline of his career. But think about all that this guy has done for what is one of the greatest sports franchises in existence in the Lakers. A 20 year career with the same team, five championships, global exposure to the game of basketball, and literally a second coming of Michael Jordan in the flesh… Would you really want to deny a man who dedicated his entire life and body to the game of basketball his money? A lot of people, Laker fans included, are thinking ‘hell yeah, what’s your problem?!’ when in actuality they should be soaking up the last of the roughneck, dirty ball era that Kobe bled. Kobe may be making an insane $25 million this season alone, but this is the finale… and it’s been one hell of a wild ride. Respect to the legend that is... Kobe Bryant.

21. Cameron Jordan | New Orleans Saints | $55 Million/5 years

In 2013, the Saints had so much faith in Cameron Jordan they slapped him with the franchise tag. The Saints front office thought they had their own JJ Watt in Jordan and jumped at the opportunity to offer the D-lineman a huge paycheck. Unfortunately, he hasn’t lived up to the hype of raking in $11 million per season. In actuality, Jordan hasn’t declined in his game too much, it’s more of the fact that he is just stagnant within the defense. Last season he racked up a decent stat sheet of 31 tackles and 7.5 sacks, but that’s not enough to keep the Saints financial advisors happy. Cameron Jordan is making an effort to earn his contract though. Coming into the current season, he lost some weight in order to have an advantage over his competition and has been moved into a hybrid position to prove his worth. We like this guy’s work ethic, keep an eye out for him every Sunday.

22. Brian Cushing | Houston Texans | $52.5 Million/6 years

At one time Brian Cushing struck fear into his offensive opponents, nowadays… not so much. Right before the start of last season, the Texans signed the middle linebacker to $52.5 million deal that would have him raking in approximately $8.7 million a season. Unfortunately, after having his knee surgically repaired Cushing just hasn’t been the same player. He no longer has the same speed, explosiveness, and aggression he once had before inking the multi-million dollar deal. After only recording 41 tackles and a single sack last season, we could definitely smell the regret coming from the Texans front office right about now. Then again, we are in the midst of the football season but it doesn’t look like the Texans have any hope of being championship contenders.

23. Andy Levitre | Tennessee Titans | $46.8 Million/6 years

We like to give offensive linemen their fair recognition… It doesn’t matter who your quarterback is, if they aren’t well protected then they’re bound to either make horrible decisions with the ball or be completely uneffective. Show some respect to your O-linemen, they don’t get enough credit. But now… we have Andy Levitre, who somehow convinced the Titans front office in 2013 that he was worthy of making close to $8 million a season over 6 years. We don’t know what happened but literally the next season Levitre’s play declined so rapidly that he was demoted to backup left guard behind, right tackle, Byron Bell. According to scouts, Byron Bell isn’t exactly the best pass protecting lineman out there either. Things are going so bad for Levitre, word around the locker room is that the Titans may be looking to trade the lineman, or even worse just cut him from the team.

24. Shin-Soo Choo | Texas Rangers | $116 Million/6 years

It looks like some of us over here at JellyShare are getting prepped for spring training this upcoming year with the Texas Rangers because they are just passing out some handsome checks over there. Shin-Soo once showed promise while with the Cleveland Indians and Cincinnati Reds but due to him being plagued by injury, he hasn’t really been himself when it counts. He played in a total of 123 games his first season with the Rangers in 2014, and also had career lows across the board with his new team. Now it looks like the Rangers may have some options for their outfield positions and are considering trading Shin-Soo in the near future. If the Rangers decide to pull the trigger on a deal, look for Shin-Soo Choo to be in the headlines in the near future.

25. BJ Upton | Atlanta Braves | $75.25 Million/5 years

BJ Upton signed the largest Atlanta Braves free agent contract ever. Once upon a time, BJ was the total package, a speedy outfielder, with a high baseball IQ, that had a powerful swing to go right along with a strong arm. Unfortunately, it seems like before the ink could even dry on his contract he was stinking up stadiums across America. During the first year in his contract, in 2013, he batted a sad .184 with 26 RBI in 126 games, and even had the second highest strikeout rate among hitters with at least 400 plate appearances. His first and last two seasons with the team he totalled 324 strikeouts in 910 at-bats. Embarrassing… It sucks to see that BJ’s swing is broken and his speed isn’t what it used to be. After having some troubles with foot inflammation during training camp in 2015, he was traded to the San Diego Padres where he was reunited with his brother, Justin Upton.

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