Professional athletes can earn a huge amount of money, and in 2014, according to Forbes, the top ten highest earners took home more than $580 million between them. Some of this was in the form of salaries, some in the form of winnings, and some athletes received part of their income in the form of endorsements. This top ten list is based on total pay for 2014. All of the top earners taking home the best salaries were men, and six sports were represented: boxing, soccer, basketball, golf, tennis and American football. Number one on our list is boxer Floyd Mayweather who outmaneuvered Manny Pacquiao on May 2, 2015 in Las Vegas, in what has been heralded as the most lucrative boxing match ever. After winning the purse of $300 million, he stated he would have just one more fight before retiring. Even so, with that one winning package, he’ll remain at the top of the highest paid athletes list for 2015 too.
#10 Matt Ryan
The highest paid American footballer in 2014, Matt Ryan took home $43.8 million, with a tiny proportion of this (just $1.8 million) in endorsements. Born in Pennsylvania in 1985, Ryan plays quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons in the National Football League (NFL). He began his professional football career in the 2008 season, showing what he was made of. That October he was named NFC Rookie of the Month. Ryan is also an avid golfer, though that is not where he earns his money.