An NFL player who saves almost all his salary and teaches a UPenn class shares his strategy for building wealth, and it's something anyone can do
- New York Jets linebacker Brandon Copeland saves nearly all of his salary - he reportedly earns $1.2 million playing for the NFL, according to Spotrac.
- His savings strategy is simple: He saves as much as he can and invests his money smartly and strategically, he said.
- He does this by focusing on his spending habits and cutting back where possible.
As if that's not financially savvy enough, he also has experience flipping homes, owns a real-estate company with his wife, and teaches a financial-literacy class he nicknamed "Life 101" at his alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania, with Brian Peterson.
That's not to mention his background interning at the investment bank UBS for two summers during college and working remotely for the Wall Street firm Weiss Multi-Strategy Advisers during the 2017 NFL off-season, according to ESPN.
When asked about his savings strategy, Copeland kept it simple: "Saving as much as possible and finding ways to invest smartly and strategically to put my money to work," he told Business Insider.
He saves by focusing on his spending habits and cutting back where he can, which is the first step to saving money, he said.
"I don't need certain things, I resist upgrades," he added, citing rental cars as an example. "I don't need to drive a Corvette to training; I'll take the Ford Focus."
This allows him to prioritize spending on the things he values most, like experiences, and put the rest away in the bank or invest it.
Copeland said he likes staying away from cookie-cutter advice and percentages because, depending on one's financial situation, it's not entirely relatable. A strategy like resourcefully saving as much as possible is something anyone can do, adjusted according to their lifestyle. "We all can look at our expenses - even if you are in a great financial situation, that human competitive nature will be looking at other places you can cut back," Copeland said.
Copeland isn't the only NFL player to save smartly. New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski announced recently that he would retire from the NFL, and he has a nice nest egg to fall back on: his entire NFL career earnings, which total $54 million after nine seasons, according to Spotrac.
Business Insider's Scott Davis previously reported that Gronkowski, 29, hadn't spent any of the money he made during his NFL career, only his endorsement earnings. He advised other players to follow a similar plan and watch their spending overall.
"I'd just say keep it simple," Gronkowski told Business Insider last year. "Keep it easy, and I'd say keep it simple. Get what you need to be comfortable, save the extra."