Warren Sapp and Four Other Former NFL Players Who Are in or Near Bankruptcy

Warren Sapp currently averages more than $100,000 per month in income. Despite having earned millions during his time in the NFL with both the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Oakland Raiders, he has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy will lead to the liquidation of his assets to pay his creditors and some of his back owed child support and alimony. He is far from the only former NFL player to earn millions of dollars during his career only to retire and become bankrupt.

Johnny Unitas
Johnny Unitas was drafted into the NFL in 1955 and he was the quarterback for the Baltimore Colts until 1972. He retired after one final year as a San Diego Charger. After retiring, Unitas joined some business ventures. After a business dealing failed, Unitas had little choice but to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 1991. This bankruptcy is one that would allow Unitas to avoid liquidation of assets. Unitas died in 2002.

Chris McAlister
A more recent example of a football player who made millions but found himself nearly in bankruptcy is Chris McAlister. McAlister played in the NFL from 1999-2005 and made millions. In 2011, however, he sought modification of the child support he was being ordered to pay. He had originally been ordered to pay approximately $11,000 per month in child support. He sought a modification of the order stating that he had no income and lived with his parents.

Lawrence Taylor
Lawrence Taylor spent more than a decade in the NFL and was considered one of the top players in the 1980s. Between a drug addiction, tax troubles and a failed business, Taylor quickly became insolvent after his career ended and he was forced to file for bankruptcy. However, Taylor ended up have much bigger problems than just financial troubles. In 2011, Taylor was sentenced to probation for allegedly having sex with an underage prostitute. He is required to register as a sex offender.

Terrell Owens
Terrell Owens was once a top football player in the NFL who made millions. After leaving the NFL at the end of 2010, the player quickly ran out of money. As he has four children by four different mothers, he was paying over $40,000 per month in child support. Though he has not filed for bankruptcy, he is, according to court filings, out of money. Owens is hoping to return to the NFL, but he currently has no contract in place.

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