Terrell Owens Broke? T.O. Explains How He Lost Most of the $80 Million He Made in the NFL [VIDEO]
Terrell Owens is trying to take on a new role, now that his professional football career appears behind him--educator.
Forbes.com conducted an interview with the 41-year-old former NFL star who recently appeared on TMZ to offer his services to interested NFL teams, namely the Chicago Bears.
According to Forbes, Owens made more than $80 million during his NFL career, but most of that money is gone. In its place is a man trying to help future athletes avoid his fate.
"I don't want anyone to go through what I did," he says.
Forbes outlined three skills Owens lacked that helped lead to his financial demise:
He had little basic money management skills. "I came from an environment where the focus was making ends meet," he said. "My mom worked three jobs to put food on the table. We never thought about protecting large assets and making them grow. That was a foreign concept to me when I came into the league."
He didn't research the people whom he let handle his finances. "I didn't take the time to fully understand what was going on with my own financial affairs," he said. "I know that sounds crazy. But I wanted to train, work hard and become the best football player I could be. I just assumed that my agent and financial advisor would take care of me and have my best interest in mind. That's where I was wrong."
Owens didn't know how to say "no" to friends and family asking to borrow money. "Many African-American athletes like myself come from disadvantage backgrounds and once they come into money, it's hard to say no because we know what it is like to go without," Owens said. "But you can't become an ATM for your friends and family." Some of his friend stole his credit card information to pay off personal bills, Forbes reported.
Forbes also pointed out that while Owens' antics may have rubbed some fans the wrong way, he had a genuineness to him that made him sympathetic.
"He may have been brash, but he was honest," Forbes' Winnie Suh wrote. "He could be loud, but he was never vulgar. And he was unusually open, while at the same time vulnerable. ... While we visited, I couldn't help but have empathy."
Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid, in an interview with ESPN, also came to T.O.'s defense, somewhat, about his role as a wide receiver.
"T.O. never complained about getting the ball," Reid said, according to arrowheadpride.com. "Not once did he complain about not getting the ball. He got it quite a bit actually. There was never a time he complained about that."
But, Reid added, "His (complaining) was other things."