IN ROB’S WORDS
In 2017, I witnessed another financial injustice, this time within the world of professional sports in Texas. Some of the guys who were actively playing in the National Football League—the NFL—had to work in the off-season because their paychecks ran out. They needed money. Considering the apparently large paychecks they received, how was that even possible?
Unfortunately, it’s extremely common. Like too many other people, professional athletes don’t always understand such things as pay structure and taxes. They don’t fully realize that the limited number of paychecks they’ll receive over their career will only go so far. They don’t know how to keep their money, how to save it, or where to put it. They spend as though they’ll continually receive a paycheck, which isn’t reality.
The fact of the matter is, most schools don’t offer financial education, so most people grow up without understanding money. But when they get out of school, it’s all about the money. Understanding how financial systems work is key to living your best life because money is the energy or the mode by which the world operates.
On top of money considerations, professional athletes face a decided lack of education about preparing for life outside of sports. That leads to so many post-career issues including loss of identity and purpose. How do you transition from sports to business? Who are you now that you don’t play anymore? These and many other concerns are not addressed, but they need to be, and they’re important considerations for anyone else who might face a mid-life career change.
After meeting current and former professional athletes, we developed the Sports Division to bring empowerment to the playing field. Through the course of its development, I met an awesome young gentleman, Jonathan Scott, who had played football on the National Championship Team with the University of Texas. He was a ten-year NFL veteran and a Pro Bowler who had played in several Super Bowls. Unlike some footballers, he quit on his own terms, and he wasn’t broke when he stopped playing—a fact he credits to the financial insight gained from his father, a former football pro who had played with Joe Namath.
Although Jonathan’s father had taught him a lot, he realized that the additional information and strategies I shared with him made a big difference. He also realized that he would have put them to even better use if he’d known about them much earlier before he’d left college. Jonathan was excited about what we were doing together. He wanted to be part of the movement bringing change and empowerment to future, current, and former professional athletes, so he took an equity ownership role in the company.
Out of our experience working together, we decided to write The Winning Playbook. Although it originally targeted professional athletes, we quickly realized the contents will give an advantage to all players in the game of life. This book isn’t just about sports or money. It’s about planning ahead and making good decisions for living the kind of life you want to live—whether you’re on the field or off. It will help future high school and college graduates, athletes, and their parents navigate life.
As stated before, the most important thing we hope to achieve with this book is to offer wealth empowerment, not simply wealth management. You may have more questions when you’re finished reading, but you’ll have a solid enough background to know where to begin looking.
This book is just a start, but the key is not just letting people tell you what to do but to know the questions you should be asking and empower yourself to take control. This book is eye-opening and a tool that can help you take control of your money, life, and more.
IN JONATHAN’S WORDS
Rob and I live by the Five Fs: faith, family, finance, fitness, and fun. They’re all fundamental to the reason I’m writing this book. I want to empower future and current athletes to live that way. I want them to learn how to control their finances and understand the financial system. I want to show them how to navigate the universe of professional sports.
But it’s more than that.
There’s power in teamwork, and everything learned from this ultimate team sport is a blueprint to life. Everyone should know how to become financially free so they can create more stability for their future and for generations to come.
During my career in the NFL, I witnessed many financial injustices resulting from the lack of money knowledge that was common among my fellow athletes. Granted, it is not the responsibility of the NFL or any other professional sports organization to educate athletes about generational wealth, nor is it their responsibility to place their athletes in a position of financial freedom. That falls on the individuals themselves. Unfortunately, most players are unequipped to look at the long game.
As I was playing, I came to understand that professional sports is a business where you get compensated for your skill set. At the end of the day, the league is about money. The thing is, professional athletes have a finite window of opportunity to gain substantial wealth. Many of them don’t realize that after all their grinding and hard work, the pro sports chapter ends. In terms of financial gain and financial longevity, that chapter can close swiftly and without notice. It’s important to avoid ending a sports career in a financial position that negates all the hard work they’ve done.
With this book, I intend to empower young athletes and teach them how to become successful entities in and beyond their athletic careers. I want to be a bridge builder to success. I’ve learned so much from different mentors and people of high intelligence who have helped me build my own foundation of knowledge. As long as I’m on this earth, I plan to create my own legacy by growing my vision of what I want to become. As a professional athlete, my biggest frustration was the politics of the game. I wasn’t granted access to the true nature of the NFL business. As my career grew, I became close to a lot of wealthy and influential people. Still, no one taught me about the tools I needed to build wealth; they just wanted to hear football stories. I grew sick of people who had made money but were unwilling to share insights that would help me build a future beyond the immediacy of my career. As I grew and became more educated, I wondered why I hadn’t known about certain attitudes and approaches and why no one had told me. I want to use this book as a conduit to educate and empower to eliminate those frustrations for everyone.
I base my life’s purpose on the concept of “each one, teach one.” As part of my legacy, I will break the chain of selfishness by leading with selflessness. I want to help future generations and positively influence the dynamic of professional athletes. I want to change the narrative so people in general don’t find themselves broke when they retire, and pro players won’t find themselves broke when they finish playing. The general public has a huge misconception about this; people assume that these athletes are stupid. They’re not stupid. They’re uninformed about wealth. Proven solutions have been available for centuries, but no one has told us about them . . . until now. My mission for this book is to teach all professional athletes what I’ve learned and help them create financial greatness for themselves.
Thank you for reading The Winning Playbook, and if you have any questions, please contact us at www.yourwinningplaybook.com. We look forward to hearing from you. Together we can create the change needed.