Picture by: Heightline
In the spirit Black Friday, we are going to take a look at some of the best steals in sports. These players are ones whose productivity has far surpassed the amount of money they are being paid. Some to a level that is almost unfair.
No. 5: Tom Brady
Picture by: CBS Sports
Contract: 2 years / $30,000,000
We are starting this list off with one that may be a little questionable at first. Paying somebody $30 million does not seem exactly like a bargain deal. However, when you factor in certain things, it turns into just that. Tom Brady is arguably the greatest quarterback of all time. He is a huge reason why the Patriots have been so consistently great. There have been many instances that Brady has taken pay cuts to stay with the team, resulting in nearly $60 million that he could have kept.
There are two ways to look at this as a bargain. The first being the athletic side, where obviously his productivity is worth much more than the money he is receiving. Many teams have tried offering huge contracts but Brady had been reluctant to staying in Foxborough. The second way is the real life side. Tom Brady is married to one of the richest women in the world, who is worth way more than he is. This factors into one of the reasons why he has taken so many pay cuts, and have given the Patriots the bargain of the century.
No. 4: Kemba Walker
Picture by: SB Nation
Contract: 4 year / $48,000,000
Moving over to the NBA for number 4, we find Kemba Walker. Walker is in the final year of his $48 million contract and is making a bid for some huge money this off-season. He is widely regarded as one of the best point guards in the league, but his talent is sadly being put to waste by this team.
While currently averaging over 28 PPG, Kemba is only making $12 million which is the 22nd most out of all NBA point guards. Walker has been the only thing that is keeping this team from being rock bottom in the league and has far out produced his contract. Not only is he set to become a free-agent after this season, he is also one of the most sought after trade elements for the remainder of the season.
No. 3: Blake Snell
Picture by: DRaysBay
Contract: 1 year / $558,200
Before 2018, many people had no idea who this kid was. Blake Snell absolute jumped onto the scene this past season, surprising many people and opening a lot of eyes. Snell finished 2018 with an AL best 21 wins and a minuscule ERA of 1.89, good for second in the league behind Jacob Degrom, all while taking home the AL Cy Young award.
With not even sniffing $1 million for a single year, it is very established that Snell is certainly a bargain. His pitching is a huge reason for the Rays’ silently good season. Despite spending some time on the disabled list, Snell never slowed down for a second the entire year and kept mowing through teams like it was nothing. Barring injury, Snell is going to get himself paid one day.
No. 2: Alvin Kamara
Picture by: USA Today
Contract: 4 years / $3,852,772
Alvin Kamara has emerged onto the NFL stage as one of the most difficult players to defend. The 23-year old is one of the most dynamic players in the league because you never know exactly where he will be on every play. With being arguably the best dual threat in the NFL, Kamara can line up in the backfield or on the outside and be just as productive from either spot.
With only making $878,193 this season, he gives plenty reason to be on this list. He is just entering the top of his game and in a league with so much star power, he finds himself towards the top. His speed combined with the intelligence he has at such a young age will be a deadly weapon for defenses across the league for years to come. He came at just the right time to help Drew Brees continue his Hall of Fame career.
No. 1: Christian Yelich
Picture by: ESPN
Contract: 7 years / $49,570,000
The Milwuakee Brewers paid $7 million for this year’s NL MVP. Yelich set career highs in nearly every offensive while also playing stellar defense in the outfield. Without Yelich in 2018, the Brewers have no chance of winning the division over the Cubs. He was the anchor for his team all season and was pivotal to their trip to the NLCS.
Yelich put together a monster campaign and is still locked up for another 3 years. The cost for him ended up being four prospects, but the Brewers are probably very happy with their decision. It is awesome to finally see a player breakout after being just on the cusp for the last couple years. Many people did not expect Yelich to do what he did in 2018, but he has made a name for himself as one of the best outfielders in all of baseball, at a huge bargain price for the Brewers.