What do NFL players pay in taxes?

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Professional football players lead enviable lives. The pro athletes on an NFL roster make a minimum of $435,000 per year, approximately 10 times the U.S. median income. The top earners get paid over $20 million per year. While that income guarantees a certain level of financial security and material comfort, there's at least one day of the year that NFL players don't get to enjoy: tax day.

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As high earners, NFL players face top tax rates at the federal and local level. In some places, these marginal rates exceed 50%.

But it doesn't end there. In addition to paying taxes to the IRS and their home team's state, many professional football players have to pay taxes to every single state in which they play a game, the so-called "jock tax." That can mean filing as many as 10 different tax returns and coughing up as much as 50% of their salary and bonuses in taxes.

To estimate the tax bills for the top-earning NFL players, SmartAsset ran salary and bonus data from overthecap.com through the income tax model that drives our federal, state and local income tax calculator.

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What do NFL players pay in taxes?

Rashard Lewis

Total basketball earnings: $155,332,815

(AP Photo/Alan Diaz)

Pau Gasol

Total basketball earnings: $156,574,396

(AP Photo/Andres Kudacki)

Gilbert Arenas

Total basketball earnings: $163,061,257

(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Elton Brand

Total basketball earnings: $165,338,631

(AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Stephon Marbury

Total basketball earnings: $151,115,945

(AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Juwan Howard

Total basketball earnings: $151,465,633

(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Allen Iverson

Total basketball earnings: $154,494,445

(AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Rasheed Wallace

Total basketball earnings: $158,110,581

(AP Photo/Mark Duncan)

Vince Carter

Total basketball earnings: $161,663,315

(AP Photo/John-Marshall Mantel)

Tracy McGrady

Total basketball earnings: $162,978,278

(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Jermaine O'Neal

Total basketball earnings: $168,794,021

(AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)

Chris Webber

Total basketball earnings: $178,230,697

(AP Photo/Donna McWilliam)

Ray Allen

Total basketball earnings: $184,356,410

(AP Photo/Andy King)

Paul Pierce

Total basketball earnings: $184,819,552

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Jason Kidd

Total basketball earnings: $187,675,468

(AP Photo/Mel Evans)

Dirk Nowitzki

Total basketball earnings: $204,063,985

(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

Tim Duncan

Total basketball earnings: $224,709,155

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Kobe Bryant

Total basketball earnings: $279,738,062

(AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)

Shaquille O'Neal

Total basketball earnings: $292,198,327

(AP Photo/Chris O'Meara,File)

Kevin Garnett

Total basketball earnings: $315,372,398

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We calculated the federal, state and local taxes for the two highest-paid players on every NFL team. Our analysis also incorporated taxes paid to the states and cities of away-game opponents, as well as applicable deductions, credits and exemptions. (Read more about our methodology below.)

Key Findings

  • California hits hard. Athletes who play for one of the NFL's three California teams pay a marginal tax rate of 12.3%, the highest state-level tax in the country. For that reason, players on those teams give up more of their income in taxes than players anywhere else in the country. Phillip Rivers, QB for the San Diego Chargers, has the highest effective tax rate of any NFL player, according to our analysis.
  • AFC South is the most tax-friendly NFL division. While on-field results for the four teams in the AFC South have been mixed this season, they are clear winners of the tax bracket. Three of the four teams play in states with no tax on regular income (Texas, Florida and Tennessee), which means no jock taxes on away games. Tax bills for players on Houston, Jacksonville and Tennessee are among the lowest in the league.
  • AFC West is worst for taxes. With two teams in California and another in Kansas City (where there are both state and local taxes), the AFC West is the worst division for away-game jock taxes.

nfl taxes ab 1 tax rates What Do NFL Players Pay in Taxes?

NFC East

New York Giants

New York City has some of the highest taxes in the country, with marginal rates reaching 12.7% when including both the state income tax and city income tax. The good news for players on the Giants: they don't actually play (or practice) in New York. The Giants' stadium and practice facility are located in New Jersey.

Instead of paying New York taxes, Giants players face the moderately lower tax burden of the Garden State. That means that Jason Pierre Paul and Eli Manning (the top two earners on the Giants for 2015) pay a "mere" 46.6% of their NFL income in taxes, instead of the over 50% rate they would pay in NYC.

Dallas Cowboys

America's Team is a dream destination for any football player. The 'Boys have the largest stadium, the biggest fan base and a brand with international appeal. They also pay some of the lowest taxes. That's because Texas has no state or local income taxes.

Washington

Washington doesn't actually play in Washington, D.C., which means that players on the team avoid the city's 8.95% top tax rate. Furthermore, while their home games occur in Maryland (where the total state and local tax rate is also 8.95%), they practice in Virginia, which has a top rate of 5.75%. Thanks to a reciprocal agreement between Virginia and Maryland, the team's players likely do not have to pay any Maryland taxes whatsoever.

Philadelphia Eagles

Among states with an income tax, Pennsylvania's flat 3.07% rate is one of the lowest. Unfortunately for Eagles players, they also have to pay a 3.92% tax to the city of Philadelphia. That's in addition to the jock taxes paid to other states.

Jock taxes in Atlanta, Massachusetts, Detroit and North Carolina also tack on an additional $97,000 to quarterback Sam Bradford's taxes and $61,000 to offensive tackle Jason Peters's taxes, according to the SmartAsset tax model. In sum, that leads to effective rates of just over 46%.

SEE MORE: Married couples should file taxes separately if...

NFC North

Green Bay Packers

The division-leading Packers have one of the highest-paid players in the league in Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers will earn about $18.2 million in salary and bonuses for the 2015 season but after paying federal and state taxes equaling 46.4% of his income, he'll have "only" $10 million left, according to our tax model. (Note: that does not include income earned for his State Farm commercials, data on which is not publicly available.)

Minnesota Vikings

After California, Minnesota is the highest-tax venue for NFL players. The state's top marginal rate is 9.85%. For someone like Adrian Peterson, who earns over $15 million per year, that means more than $1 million annually in state taxes alone.

Chicago Bears

Chicago is the country's third largest city, but it ranks nowhere near the top when it comes to income taxes (property taxes are another story). The state income tax rate in Illinois is 5% and the city has no local income tax. Nonetheless, thanks to high federal taxes, Jay Cutler and Matt Forte pay an estimated 45% and 44.6% of their income in taxes respectively.

Detroit Lions

Calvin Johnson is the NFL's highest-paid receiver, earning more than $20 million per year. He's known for out-muscling DBs to snare tough catches, but not even Megatron can beat the Tax Man. SmartAsset estimates that nearly half his playing income – 46.1% to be exact – goes to taxes.

The largest recipient is the IRS, but the state of Michigan and the city of Detroit also tax Johnson at rates of 4.25% and 2.4% respectively. (QB Matt Stafford earns slightly less than his top wideout but still pays an effective tax rate of 46%.)

NFC South

Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons are one of the surprise teams of 2015. Matt Ryan to Julio Jones has been the league's most lethal QB-receiver combo. They are also one of the highest paid pairings, earning $31.9 million together this season.

Thanks to a fairly moderate income tax in Georgia (the top rate is 6%) they get to keep more of that income than many other top NFL players. Overall, however, they are still paying an estimated $14.4 million combined in income taxes on their NFL earnings alone.

Carolina Panthers

Over the past several years, North Carolina's income tax shifted from a progressive tax with rates as high as 7.75% to a flat tax with rates at 5.75%. That shift has likely meant hundreds of thousands of dollars in tax savings for players on the Carolina Panthers.

Charles Johnson and Cam Newton will pay an estimated $9 million and $5.8 million, respectively, in total taxes on their 2015 income. Cam will be seeing his tax bill rise next season when he enters the first year of a new contract (as will linebacker Luke Kuechly).

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

It's looking like another disappointing season for the Bucs but the players can take solace in the fact that they pay some of the NFL's lowest taxes. The Buc's highest-paid players give up about 43% of their income in taxes.

That number would be lower if not for an away schedule that features seven states which collect an income tax of their own. For example, SmartAsset estimates that Gerald McCoy will pay over $240,000 in income taxes to the home states and cities of his away-game opponents.

New Orleans Saints

This is the last season in which Drew Brees qualifies as the top-earning NFL player (Aaron Rodgers looks to claim that title next year). Despite moderate tax rates in Louisiana (the top rate is 6%), he also has the largest overall tax bill in SmartAsset's analysis. We estimate that Mr. Brees will pay $11.7 million in state and federal taxes.

NFC West

Arizona Cardinals

Income taxes in Arizona are fairly low, topping out at just 4.54%. That's good news for Patrick Peterson, one of the league's best and most well remunerated defensive backs. He will pay an estimated effective tax rate of 44.7% on his 2015 income, below average for top NFL players.

Saint Louis Rams

Tax cuts in Missouri will reduce the state's top income tax rate from 6% to 5.5% in coming years. That means big savings for Rams players. For example, defensive lineman Robert Quinn will pay an estimated $969,000 in state taxes on his $16.74 million in 2015 income. At a top rate of 5.5%, he would pay closer to $885,000. That's $84,000 in savings, enough for a new Lexus!

Seattle Seahawks

The Hawks have been one of the NFL's hottest teams in recent years. Two consecutive Super Bowl appearances have helped them draw top free agent talent like Percy Harvin (in 2014) and Jimmy Graham. Another reason free agents love Seattle? The taxes. Washington State has no personal income tax.

The flipside of that is that when the Seahawks leave the confines of vaunted CenturyLink Field, they have to cough up big dollars to their away-game hosts thanks to the jock tax. Richard Sherman, for example, will pay an estimated $241,000 in additional income taxes to other states in 2015, highest of any player in the NFL.

San Francisco 49ers

It's been a rough season for the 49ers, who are breaking in a new stadium with one of their worst seasons in years. The one bit of good news (for players, not fans)? The location of that new stadium means they'll all pay lower taxes this season.

Thinking about a move to San Francisco? Find out what your taxes will be with SmartAsset's California tax calculator.

The city of San Francisco levies a city income tax of 1.5% against people who live or work within city limits. Since the team's new park is not in San Fran but in Santa Clara, most players will no longer have to pay that tax. That has likely saved Colin Kaepernick, who earns over $15 million per year, more than $200,000 in taxes.

SEE MORE: Tom Brady through the years

75 PHOTOS
Tom Brady through the years
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What do NFL players pay in taxes?
FOXBORO, UNITED STATES: The New England Patriots' quarterback Tom Brady passes against the Indianapolis Colts in the first quarter of their game at Foxboro Stadium 30 September 2001 in Foxboro, MA. AFP PHOTO/John MOTTERN (Photo credit should read JOHN MOTTERN/AFP/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, UNITED STATES: New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady reacts in pain on the bench after being knocked out of the game with a leg injury in the second quarter of the AFC Championship game 27 January, 2002 at Heinz Stadium in Pittsburgh, PA. The winner will face either the St. Louis Rams or the Philadelphia Eagles in the Super Bowl. AFP PHOTO/Timothy A. CLARY (Photo credit should read TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, UNITED STATES: New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (C) takes a hit from Charles Woodson (R) of the Oakland Raiders on a pass attempt in the last two minutes of the game in their AFC playoff 19 January 2002 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. The Patriots won 16-13 in overtime. AFP PHOTO/Matt CAMPBELL (Photo credit should read MATT CAMPBELL/AFP/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, UNITED STATES: New England Patriots Quarterback Tom Brady shows frustration after failing to make a two point conversion in the 4th quarter against the Denver Broncos at Gillette Stadium 27 October,2002 in Foxboro, MA. AFP PHOTO/JOHN MOTTERN (Photo credit should read JOHN MOTTERN/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, UNITED STATES: New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady pitches the ball to a back during first half action of Super Bowl XXXVI 03 February, 2002 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The St. Louis Rams and the New England Patriots are playing for the NFL championship. AFP PHOTO/Tom SLOAN (Photo credit should read TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, UNITED STATES: AFC Champions New England Patriots players (L to R) Ty Law, Troy Brown, Lawyer Milloy, and Tom Brady strike a pose for photographers during the team's photo and interview day 29 January 2002 at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans. The Patriots will take on the NFC Champions St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI on 03 February. AFP PHOTO/Roberto SCHMIDT (Photo credit should read ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP/Getty Images)
Tom Brady received Best Breakthrough Athlete at ESPN's 10th Annual Espy Awards at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, Ca. Wednesday, July 10, 2002. Photo by Kevin Winter/ImageDirect
HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 1: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates after defeating the Carolina Panthers 32-29 during Super Bowl XXXVIII at Reliant Stadium on February 1, 2004 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 1: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks on before Super Bowl XXXVIII against the Carolina Panthers at Reliant Stadium on February 1, 2004 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
HOUSTON - FEBRUARY 1: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks to toss the ball to a running back against the Carolina Panthers during Super Bowl XXXVIII at Reliant Stadium on February 1, 2004 in Houston, Texas. The Patriots defeated the Panthers 32-29. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 9: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots throws a pass against the Indianapolis Colts during the NFL game at Gillette Stadium on September 9, 2004 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 16: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots spikes the ball after scoring a touchdown against the Indianapolis Colts during the AFC divisional playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 16, 2005 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Tom Brady of The New England Patriots speaks with the media during media day at Alltel Stadium in Jacksonville, Florida on February 1, 2005. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 06: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates with the Lombardi trophy after defeating the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl XXXIX at Alltel Stadium on February 6, 2005 in Jacksonville, Florida. The Patriots defeated the Eagles 24-21. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH - JANUARY 23: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers with the Lamar Hunt Trohpy in the AFC championship game at Heinz Field on January 23, 2005 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Patriots defeated the Steelers 41-27 to advance to the Super Bowl. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
DENVER - OCTOBER 16: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots heads for the bench after a failed offensive drive against the Denver Broncos as the Broncos defeated the Patriots 28-20 at Invesco Field at Mile High on October 16, 2005 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 8: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots runs off the field after winning the 2005 NFL opening game against the Oakland Raiders at Gillette Stadium on September 8, 2005 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. The Patriots defeated the Raiders 30-20. (Photo by Travis Lindquist/Getty Images)
FOXBOROUGH, MA - OCTOBER 30: Quarterbacks Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots and Kelly Holcomb #10 of the Buffalo Bills shake hands after their game on October 30, 2005 at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
A somber New England Patriots quarterback, Tom Brady, thinks about his answer to a reporter's question during a media availability at the football team's facility in Foxborough, Mass., Wednesday morning, Dec. 13, 2006. The Patriots, who lost to division rival, The Miami Dolphins, last Sunday will play their last regular season home game Sunday against the Houston Texans. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) congratulates Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning (18) after Manning and the Colts defeated the Patriots 27-20 in their football game Sunday, Nov. 5, 2006 in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
** FILE ** New England Patriots wide receiver Randy Moss (6) talks with quarterback Tom Brady during the second day of the football team's mini-camp in Foxborough, Mass., Wednesday morning, June 6, 2007. The team's training camp is scheduled to start on Friday July 27. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) is surrounded by media as he takes their questions while standing in front of his locker at the NFL football team's facility in Foxborough, Mass., Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2007. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) and Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) meet at midfield after their NFL football game in Foxborough, Mass., Sunday, Dec. 9, 2007. The Patriots defeated the Steelers 34-13 to remain undefeated at 13-0. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 29: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots points out the defense against the New York Giants on December 29, 2007 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 29: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates with Richard Seymour #93 after defeating the New York Giants to go undefeated for the season on December 29, 2007 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 03: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots stretches before taking on the New York Giants during Super Bowl XLII on February 3, 2008 at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 03: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots is hit as he throws by defensive tackle Barry Cofield #96 and Osi Umenyiora #72 of the New York Giants in the first half during Super Bowl XLII on February 3, 2008 at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 03: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots is hit hard by Michael Strahan #92 of the New York Giants in the second quarter during Super Bowl XLII on February 3, 2008 at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 03: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots takes the field for the second half of Super Bowl XLII against the New York Giants on February 3, 2008 at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 03: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots walks on the field in the second quarter of Super Bowl XLII against the New York Giants on February 3, 2008 at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 7: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots is helped off the field by trainers after he sustained an injury to his left knee in the first quarter against the Kansas City Chiefs at Gillette Stadium September 7, 2008 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 18: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots congratulates Wes Welker #83 after Welker ran the ball in for a touchdown in the second quarter against the Tennessee Titans on October 18, 2009 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. BenJarvis Green-Ellis #42 of the Patriots celebrates the play. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 25: Tom Brady (#12) of the New England Patriots directs the play during the NFL International Series match between New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Wembley Stadium on October 25, 2009 in London, England. This is the third occasion where a regular season NFL match has been played in London. (Photo by Tom Shaw/Getty Images)
DENVER - OCTOBER 11: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots passes against the Denver Broncos during an NFL game at Invesco Field at Mile High on October 11, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 20: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots sits on the ground after getting knocked down in the fourth quarter against the Baltimore Ravens during the 2013 AFC Championship game at Gillette Stadium on January 20, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots reacts after an incomplete pass in the second quarter while taking on the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots screams during pregame before taking on the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots calls out from under center in the first half while taking on the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - AUGUST 29: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots talks to Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants following their preseason game at Gillette Stadium on August 29, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 13: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots talks with Darren Sproles #43 of the New Orleans Saints after the game at Gillette Stadium on October 13, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.The New England Patriots defeated the New Orleans Saints 30-27. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 13: Head coach Sean Payton of the New Orleans Saints shakes hands with quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots following the Patriots 30-27 win at Gillette Stadium on October 13, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - NOVEMBER 18: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots during their game at Bank of America Stadium on November 18, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FL - DECEMBER 15: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks on during a game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium on December 15, 2013 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FL - DECEMBER 15: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots warms up during a game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium on December 15, 2013 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 8: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates the game-winning touchdown with Julian Edelman #11 in the 4th quarter at Gillette Stadium on December 8, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
BALTIMORE, MD - DECEMBER 22: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates a second half touchdown against the Baltimore Ravens during the Patriots 41-7 win at M&T Bank Stadium on December 22, 2013 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JANUARY 19: Tom Brady #12 talks to Shane Vereen #34 of the New England Patriots on a foutrh down in the fourth quarter during the AFC Championship game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on January 19, 2014 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 11: Tom Brady (R) #12 of the New England Patriots shakes hands with Andrew Luck (L) #12 of the Indianapolis Colts after their AFC Divisional Playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 11, 2014 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. The New England Patriots defeated the Indianapolis Colts 43 to 22. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 11: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots runs off the field after defeating the Indianapolis Colts in their AFC Divisional Playoff game at Gillette Stadium on January 11, 2014 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. The New England Patriots defeated the Indianapolis Colts 43 to 22. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - JANUARY 19: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots congratulates Peyton Manning #18 of the Denver Broncos after the Broncos defeated the Patriots 26 to 16 during the AFC Championship game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on January 19, 2014 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FL - SEPTEMBER 07: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots walks offsides the field in the first quarter of play against the Miami Dolphins in a game at Sun Life Stadium on September 7, 2014 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FL - SEPTEMBER 07: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots stands on the sideline during pregame workouts before his team met the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium on September 7, 2014 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 26: Jimmy Garoppolo #10 and Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots warm up before a game against the Chicago Bears at Gillette Stadium on October 26, 2014 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 16: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots reacts after throwing a touchdown pass during the fourth quarter against the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on October 16, 2014 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - NOVEMBER 16: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots signals a first down against the Indianapolis Colts during the third quarter of the game at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 16, 2014 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CA - DECEMBER 07: Quarterback Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots warms up before a game against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on December 7, 2014 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 10: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots warms up before the 2014 AFC Divisional Playoffs game against the Baltimore Ravens at Gillette Stadium on January 10, 2015 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 10: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots is sacked during the second quarter of the 2014 AFC Divisional Playoffs game against the Baltimore Ravens at Gillette Stadium on January 10, 2015 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 22: New England Patriots Quarterback Tom Brady talks to the media during a press conference to address the under inflation of footballs used in the AFC championship game at Gillette Stadium on January 22, 2015 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots walks off the field after throwing an interception against the Seattle Seahawks in the first quarter during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates after a touchdown against the Seattle Seahawks in the second quarter during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates after a touchdown against the Seattle Seahawks in the second quarter during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots walks off the field while playing the Seattle Seahawks in the third quarter during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 and Julian Edelman #11 of the New England Patriots celebrate after a three yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter against the Seattle Seahawks during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates after defeating the Seattle Seahawks during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. The Patriots defeated the Seahawks 28-24. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates after defeating the Seattle Seahawks during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. The Patriots defeated the Seahawks 28-24. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Rob Gronkowski #87 (L) and Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrate while holding up the Vince Lombardi Trophy after defeating the Seattle Seahawks during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. The Patriots defeated the Seahawks 28-24. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates with Mark Wahlberg after defeating the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 to win Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates after defeating the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 to win Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots celebrates with team owner Robert Kraft after defeating the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks congratulates Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots after the Patriots 28-24 win during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - FEBRUARY 4: Benjamin Brady (L) holds the Lombardi trophy next to his dad, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, on a duck boat during the New England Patriots victory parade on February 4, 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady scrambles as he is hit by blocking arms during an NFL football training camp in Foxborough, Mass., Thursday, July 30, 2015. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady wipes the sweat from his head during an NFL football training camp in Foxborough, Mass., Thursday, July 30, 2015. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
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AFC East

New England Patriots

The dynastic Patriots show no signs of slowing down this season, with Tom Brady & Co. steamrolling most of their opponents to date. One adversary against which they don't stand a chance, however, is the IRS. SmartAsset estimates that Brady will pay $6.27 million in taxes on his football income alone this year. Nearly 90% of that will go to the federal government.

Based on his NFL income, Brady will "only" have to file tax returns in five different states this year (Massachusetts, New York, Indiana, New Jersy and Colorado). He benefits from a schedule that features two away games in tax-free Texas and another in Florida.

New York Jets

The Jets, like the Giants, save their players a fairly substantial sum of tax dollars by playing in New Jersey rather than the city of New York. If, for example, the Jets played in Queens, they would face a top state and city tax rate totaling 12.7%, higher even than the rate in California.

Buffalo Bills

In New York State, only those who earn over $1,000,000 pay the state's top tax rate of 8.82%. While that excludes the vast majority of the population and even many professional athletes, Bills players like Mario Williams and Marcell Dareus fall squarely into that top bracket. That means they pay some of the highest taxes in the league.

Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins made a splash this off-season when they signed former Detroit Lion Ndamukong Suh out of free agency. Many speculated that Suh chose the Dolphins over his former team because his taxes would be significantly lower in Florida.

There may be something to that. The top-earning Dolphins pay effective rates of 42.9% of their income in taxes. That's 3% lower than the taxes on Detroit players, representing hundreds of thousands of tax savings for players like Suh, who earn over $10 million per year.

AFC North

Cincinnati Bengals

The state of Ohio's tax rates top out at 5.39% but Cincinnati collects its own city income tax of 2.1%. That costs players like the Bengals' AJ Green hundreds of thousands per year in additional taxes. Overall, Green, who is one of the NFL's top receivers, will pay an estimated $6.8 million in taxes on his 2015 income.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Professional athletes are subject to the "jock tax," which means they may have to pay income taxes in every state in which they play a game. Reciprocal agreements not to tax one another's residents between Pennsylvania and several other states may shield players on the Steelers from paying such taxes in states including Ohio (where they play two games this year) and Maryland. That could mean tens or hundreds of thousands in tax savings for players like Ben Roethlisberger.

Cleveland Browns

Combined state and local tax rates in Cleveland can be as high as 7.39%. While that pales in comparison to places like California or Hawaii (which, alas, has no NFL team), it still takes a chunk out of the income of top pro players.

Not that anyone feels sorry for them. Even after giving up an estimated 46.1% of his income in taxes, Cleveland's Joe Haden is taking home $6.3 million annually.

Baltimore Ravens

After California's three teams and Minnesota, Baltimore is the highest-tax team an NFL player can sign with. Indeed, Joe Flacco's estimated effective tax rate of 47.2% ranks as the ninth highest in the league.

AFC South

Indianapolis Colts

While Colts players may not publically declare that they love their division foes, they probably love where they play. Tennessee, Texas and Florida do not collect state income taxes on regular income, which means Colts players avoid the hated "jock tax" for at least those three games every year. That saves them tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional taxes every year.

Tennessee Titans

The state of Tennessee does not collect a personal income tax (though it does tax personal income from interest and investment dividends). It briefly flirted with a tax specifically targeted at professional athletes but that tax excluded the NFL and was repealed in 2014. The upshot is that Titans players like Jason McCourty pay some of the lowest taxes in the league.

Houston Texans

While JJ Watt doesn't have to pay any state or local taxes in Texas, he does have to cough up some of his income when the Texans go on the road. The league's top defensive lineman can expect to file at least five tax returns in opponent territory, paying an estimated total of $165,513 in jock taxes.

Jacksonville Jaguars

The past few years have been rough on the Jags, who haven't had a winning season since 2007. It isn't all bad news, however. Florida has no income tax, which means Jaguars players enjoy some of the league's lowest taxes. Julius Thomas, for example, will pay an estimated 42.3% of his income in taxes this year – high for the average American, but low for an NFL star.

AFC West

Denver Broncos

Colorado's flat income tax rate of 4.63% is fairly low as compared with the top rates in most states. On the other hand, Peyton Manning and the rest of the Broncos have to play at least two away games in California every year (against Oakland and San Diego).

Indeed, Manning will pay nearly $400,000 in jock taxes on his 2015 income according to SmartAsset's analysis, though he can claim Colorado tax credits for about $265,000 of that.

Oakland Raiders

The good news for the Raiders is that halfway through the season they are still in the thick of the playoff race. The bad news is that whatever happens, come tax day they'll have to pay tax rates that rank among the highest in the league. SmartAsset estimates that Oakland's Rodney Hudson will give up 49.8% of his 2015 income in taxes, the third highest rate in the league.

San Diego Chargers

Phillip Rivers is completing almost 70% of his passes this season, which places him near the top of the league for that statistic. He leads the league in another, more dubious category. According to SmartAsset's analysis, Rivers effective income tax on 2015 NFL income will be 50%, the highest rate in the league. He's the only player who will pay half of his income in taxes.

Kansas City Chiefs

According to Over the Cap, Alex Smith will earn $15.6 million in salary and bonuses over the course of the 2015 season. He'll pay out an estimated $7.2 million of that in taxes, including $900,000 to the state of Missouri and $156,000 to Kansas City.

He'll also have to pay a jock tax to eight different away-game states and cities, including California, Minnesota and Maryland. Those will cost him another $105,000.

nfl taxes ab 2 all 1 What Do NFL Players Pay in Taxes?

Methodology

To estimate the taxes paid by NFL players, SmartAsset fed salary and bonus data from overthecap.com into the income tax model that powers our income tax calculator. The model incorporates nearly every single federal, state and local tax rule that goes into a tax return filed anywhere in the U.S. For example, the model automatically applies the additional 0.9% Medicare payroll tax to high earners. (Try it yourself!)

The income figures we used to calculate taxes were for NFL salary and bonus income only. We did not use sponsorship, investment or any other income, which is not often publicly available. Likewise, we used income for the 2015 season only.

We allocated signing bonus income evenly over the course of each player's contract (so a player on a 3-year contract with a $3 million signing bonus would get $1 million of that tacked on for this year). For players like Russell Wilson and Eli Manning, both of whom signed new contracts to begin next year we used only income for this year's contract.

In order to calculate tax-burdens, we had to make some assumptions with regards to deductions and exemptions. We assumed that every player would take the maximum $18,000 401(k) contribution. We assumed each player deducted agent fees of 3%, NFL Player's Association fees of $10,000 and home mortgage interest of $45,000 (approximately the maximum amount, though it will vary depending on interest rate).

We also incorporated each player's marital status. For players who are currently married, we assumed they would file jointly with their spouse. Unmarried players were treated as single filers.

Jock Taxes

SmartAsset's analysis also incorporates the taxes paid to the states and cities of away-game opponents, also known as jock taxes. These taxes are calculated based on "service days," that is, the number of days spent working (practicing and then playing) in the state. So, for example, if a player spends 17 days in a state and earns income on 170 days total of work, 10% of his income is taxable in that state.

We assume each away game was equal to 7 service days out of 170 total for the season. That means a player with $10 million in total income would have income of $411,764 in any away-game state. If he played two away games in that state, total income would be double that amount. To calculate the jock tax, we ran those income numbers through the tax model for each of the away-game jurisdictions.

The good news for most players is that their home-states allow taxes paid in other jurisdictions to be credited, so that they don't pay double taxes on the same income. The credit is equal to the amount that was paid in the other jurisdiction or the amount that would have been paid on that income at home, whichever is lower. For players in high-tax venues such as California, that means these jock taxes add nothing to their total tax bill.

We calculated the total jock tax credit for each player and, lastly the net jock tax. That is the taxes paid in other jurisdictions minus the credits received at home. We combined that with the federal, state and local taxes on total income to arrive at each player's total tax bill.

Questions about our study? Contact us at blog@smartasset.com.
The post What Do NFL Players Pay in Taxes? appeared first on SmartAsset Blog.

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