Tom Brady Has an Excellent Reason for Not Needing More NFL Money

Tom Brady is a six-time Super Bowl champ and a three-time NFL MVP, but he’s not the highest-paid football star by a long shot. As he revealed on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, however, his salary doesn’t matter so much since he’s married to Gisele Bündchen.

On the Thursday, May 2, episode of the talk show, host Jimmy Kimmel praised the New England Patriots quarterback, 41, for taking a lower paycheck. “You should be the highest-paid player in football, but you’re not the highest-paid player because you don’t demand that,” Kimmel, 51, said. “I think you’re, like, 18th or 20th. Shouldn’t you be the highest-paid guy?”

“That’s a good question,” Brady responded. “Usually when I don’t want to answer a question, I’ll always say, like, ‘That’s a good question.’ But I think the things I’ve always felt for me in my life, winning [has] been a priority, and my wife makes a lot of money, so …”

He quipped, “I’m a little smarter than you think!”

In fact, Brady’s $20 million salary is nearly half that of the Seattle Seahawks’ Russell Wilson ($35 million) and the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Ben Roethlisberger ($34 million). The Super Bowl LI MVP is the 20th highest paid star, per NFL.com, ranking behind Eli Manning ($21 million) and Cam Newton ($20.8 million) as well.

For Brady, however, having talented teammates is worth the lower paycheck. “It’s a salary cap,” he explained to the late-night host on Thursday. “You know, you can only spend so much, and the more that one guy gets, it’s less for others. And I think from a competitive advantage standpoint, I’d like a lot of good players around me.”

Bündchen, 38, has an estimated net worth of $400 million from her career as a supermodel, and Forbes reported in 2012 that the former Victoria’s Secret Angel had pulled in $45 million in the past year alone. She and Brady have been married since February 2009 and have two children together: son Benjamin, 9, and daughter Vivian, 6. The athlete also has an 11-year-old son, John, with ex-girlfriend Bridget Moynahan.

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