20 hot athletes with the biggest endorsement deals of 2016


Have you ever wondered how much money a professional athlete makes? While it obviously varies depending on the sport and the player, many athletes put their salaries and winnings to shame with their massive earnings off the playing field (or court).

Those off-the-field earnings come from endorsement deals.

For example, professional golfer Phil Mickelson brought home roughly $2.9 million in salary and winnings in 2016. That's not bad! But off the course? Mickelson amassed a sizable fortune — $50 million — from endorsement contracts.

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According to Opendorse, a company designed to match potential brand sponsors with athletes, the top 100 highest-paid athlete endorsers this year collected more than $924 million in sponsor deals. That's an increase from $917 million in 2015.

So, which athletes are bringing in the most money off the field?

According to Opendorse and Forbes' list of the world's highest-paid athletes, these 20 athletes — listed from lowest to highest — brought home the biggest endorsement checks in 2016:

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