In 2017, the Pitt alum signed a $135 million contract with the Rams. It was one of the most lucrative deals a defensive tackle had ever negotiated.
The driving force behind the Rams is playing the best football of his life, and Aaron Donald’s net worth has skyrocketed as a result.
Aaron Donald is 1 of the greatest defensive tackles in NFL history
The 30-year-old defensive tackle has been playing in the NFL for the past seven years. He attended the University of Pittsburgh and was the 13th pick in Round 1 of the 2014 NFL Draft.
Signed with the Rams, Donald inked a $16 million contract giving him a guaranteed $10.13 million, along with a signing bonus of $5.69 million.
Out of the gate, he impressed, earning the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year award.
Also known as “The Cheat Code,” Aaron Donald has become one of the most dominant players in the NFL. He’s a seven-time Pro Bowler, a three-time Defensive Player of the Year, and a six-time first-team All-Pro player.
According to Pro Football Reference, Donald has played in 115 NFL games with the Rams. The hard-working DT has combined career tackles of 381, with 258 solo and 123 assisted. He also has 209 career quarterback hits.
Aaron Donald is the highest-paid defensive tackle in the league
In 2017, quarterback Tom Brady led the New England Patriots to victory against the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl 51. Contrary to popular belief, the six-time Super Bowl champ was not the highest-paid player in that game.
According to CNBC, the bragging rights belonged to the Rams’ defensive tackle. At the time, Donald’s annual salary was a staggering $22.5 million. By comparison, Brady was earning $15 million.
At the beginning of the 2017 season, Donald signed a six-year contract valued at $135 million. The impressive deal, combined with a signing bonus and numerous endorsement deals, landed the AP Defensive Player of the Year at the fifth spot on Forbes‘ list “The NFL’s Highest-Paid Players 2018.”
Forbes reports Donald negotiated his record-breaking deal with only a week left to go before the season opener. The six-year deal includes $87 million guaranteed, plus a $40 million signing bonus. His endorsement deals with Pepsi, Karma Automotive, Boone Enterprises, and Panini were worth $250,000 in 2017.
Today, Aaron Donald’s net worth is an estimated $60 million, Go Banking Rates reports.
He never fails to impress
Aaron Donald sits at 40th on Forbes‘ “2021 The World’s Highest-Paid Athletes Earnings.” The publication says the seven-time Pro Bowl player negotiated “the richest deal ever signed by a defensive tackle.” Forbes reports that Donald’s current annual salary is $35.5 million, with endorsement deals valued at $500,000. He has sponsorships with Dick’s Sporting Goods, Panini, and Electronic Arts.
According to Spotrac, Donald and Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford share the same contract value of $135 million. Stafford received a slightly higher signing bonus and has a cap hit of $20 million, compared to Donald’s $14.4 million. The experienced QB, who has been in the league for the past 12 years, has career earnings of $246,506,037, compared to Donald’s $102,915,928.
Donald is engaged to Erica Sherman, and they share two young children. Fan Buzz reports the defensive tackle and his future wife “run an organization in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which reaches out to underprivileged youth through sports and community-based projects.”
According to Pro Sports Outlook, in Week 5, Donald became “the Rams all-time franchise sacks leader,” reaching 88.5 sacks. The publication claims that “he executes better than anybody who’s ever played the game” and credits his strength and quickness for his legendary status with the Rams.