Steve Young, you sly devil, you.
The long and short of it is that Young, the Hall of Fame quarterback who last played in the NFL in 1999, is still making millions of dollars to "play football" on account of a hilariously backloaded deal he signed with the USFL in 1984.
What happened was, according to this fascinating story at CelebrityNetWorth.com , the USFL and NFL got into a bidding war over Young, and since USFL teams didn't have contract limits, they won a lot of those battles.
The USFL's Los Angeles Express threw $40 million at Young, which adjusts to $90 million in today's money and was at the time the largest player contract awarded in pro sports.
Naturally, Young accepted. Also naturally, the Los Angeles Express did not exactly have $40 million in cash laying around, so they structured the deal as an annuity, spread out over 40 years.
The five-year deal was 100 percent guaranteed, included $4 million up front, and paid him between $200,000 and $400,000 over those five years.
That left $30 million, which the Express agreed to pay over a 37-year span, beginning when Young turned 28 and ending when he turned 65. The Los Angeles Express will pay Young $1 million in 2014 with the payments escalating each year until the deal finally runs out in 2027, with Young earning $3.17 million.
The Los Angeles Express, of course, has not existed since 1987. That hardly matters, though, because Young's agent had insisted the contract be insured, same as any other annuity.
Current 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, by the way, is making $840,000 this year.
The original article can be found at FOXSports.com: Young still raking in big USFL bucks.