NFL’s Martellus & Michael Bennett On Growing Money As Entrepreneurs | Kneading Dough, S.2, E.3

– Is this gonna say
that it was recorded in front of a live
studio audience? – Absolutely.
– I’ve always wanted to see that in front
of something I was doing. – You’re finally on one
of those shows, buddy. Exactly.
So, Marty and Michael, you talked about your parents. Your dad made a lot of
sacrifices for you guys. – My mom did too.
I think the biggest thing that my parents did for us
is that… they didn’t put an emphasis
on anything. So, like, I played in symphony
growing up. I played trombone. But my parents would
be at the–my symphony the same way they would
be at the football game, right? They would be there,
the same front row, cheering, “Great job,” make sure I had everything
I needed to get. And they would go
to the football games to do the same, so for me,
it was like football was never more important
than band, or band was less imperative
to my parents, ’cause they supported
everything we did. So that’s how
our parents were. – Now let me ask you this:
in the world of sport, when does it become a business? – Everybody else knows
it’s a business besides the athletes.
– ‘Cause I was gonna ask, when do the players–
when should the players know it’s a business?
– They should know right away because every player
is an entrepreneur, and we’re consultants;
like, every year, I gotta prove my product,
just in case somebody else needs me to come in and consult
at the tight end position. It’s the same thing
for defenses– – Yeah.
– Everybody’s an entrepreneur. You’re a one-man contract to go out there and perform
at a high level. But I think most players
miss it because they love playing
football. A lot of athletes
are first-generation money. So we never were taught
about money or about investment.
We never…see parents. In the black community
where we grew up, nobody wants to talk
about money, so it’s like– it’s like, “Hey,
here’s $3 million.” – “Good luck.”
– Yeah. So–and that’s a lot of money if you–and then–so the people
that you would lean on, your parents, they never
managed that much money or seen that much money
in their life. – I think, too, to piggyback
off what he said, too, I think a lot of times,
when people look at athletes, they see–they see a man, but in the reality of it, they’ve been so, like, coddled
through the whole process that they haven’t
had a chance to develop, and one of the things they
haven’t been able to develop is financial literacy. And I think at my–
at my house, we never talked about it
in-depth. We never talked about
the, you know, trust and, you know, wills
and different ways to– you know, life insurance–
different ways to assure that your kids are– have some kind
of fallback plan. We never really had those
in-depth conversations, those honest conversations that
you need to be able to have to be able to have
that background. And I think now,
with my kids, I try to focus on that
and teach them about what’s important.
– Even like now, raising my daughter, I’m not
raising a worker bee, right? I’m raising a queen bee, right?
So–’cause football is something I–
you can’t give, right? If I have a son, there’s no
telling that he’s gonna be 6’7″, 270 pounds, and
strikingly handsome, you know? [laughter]
With a mean stiff arm, right? You know what I’m saying?
Like, there’s no guarantee. But, like, creativity
and entrepreneurship are something I can teach
and give to my kids. They could inherit my company. They can inherit anything
I did on the field. When I started the company,
it was because I wanted to show my daughter
that anything was possible. So a big part
of a lot of stuff I do is to show her that she
could do and become anything that she wanted to be
by doing it myself. – So you–Michael,
you obviously talked about budgeting, too,
and saving your checks. Was budgeting something
you learned in the league, or were you guys
instilled that growing up? – As a kid, I always tried
to save my money a lot. Like, I had different jobs,
and I used to save my money, and then buy me and my brother
school clothes. I worked at–I was a lifeguard
for most of– Most of the time, I was
a lifeguard for four years. – Being a lifeguard in
a black community is a–a big job.
– [laughing] – My journey to NFL is
different from Martellus here. He got drafted in second round,
and I went undrafted. So I had to be tight
from the beginning. Like, for my first three years,
I lived in a hotel. Like, I would live in a hotel–
– To save money? – To save money, and plus,
the biggest mistake I ever made in the NFL
was that I made a team, met the Seattle Seahawks,
I went and got into a townhouse,
I bought furniture, I had my wife come up
to Seattle, and, like, two, three days
later, I got cut, so– – And now you got this house
and all this stuff. – Well, it was a rent,
and I couldn’t get none of my money back,
so it was like, that was my first time
learning about contracts, and, you know, I couldn’t
get my rent back for the year. I just lost it,
and so, from then on, I never wanted that mistake
to happen. – Marty, for you, when you first signed
your contract, what was the first
big splurge you made? Was there something big
that you bought that you were like,
“I gotta have this”? – I cashed my check,
and I threw it up. – All the cash?
– I slept in the money. – All the money?
How much was it? – Like, one-point-something,
but I put a– – Where you do it–in the
living room, in your house? – My bedroom–so I handcuffed
a briefcase to my hand, ’cause I always wanted
to do that, right? – Are you serious,
or are you joking? – He’s serious.
– Wait, wait. Are you serious? – Yeah, I’m serious.
– How much was in the suitcase? – A lot, right?
– $1.1 million? – It wasn’t that much,
but it was… a good chunk of money,
like, I found $20 bills, like,
two weeks later. [laughter, indistinct chatter] – Michael, he’s serious?
– He’s serious. – I took it right back
to the bank the next day. – So you walked out of the bank with a handcuff
and a briefcase? – Yeah, nothing’s better
than feeling rich. – Of course.
– Right? So… I mean, wealth is of the mind,
not of the pocket, but in this moment, right,
it’s about the pocket, right? [laughter] – Michael, what was
the first thing you bought when you had that first
big, big check? – I bought my parents a house.
It was the first thing you did. – Which I told him not to do.
– Why not? – I told him, I said,
“Don’t do it yet.” But I was like, “Get your house
first, then get their house.” – So you bought your parents’
house before you bought yourself a house?
– My parents’ and my wife’s parents’ house before
I bought myself a house. It was because
I was unsettled in where I wanted to live.
– But, Michael, so… in the position
that you’re in now, you’ve educated yourself. What are some of the tips
you would give young athletes
about budgeting now, as they come into the league
out of college? – I think–I think,
for young athletes, I would tell them
about investments. You know,
getting them caught up, whether it’s real estate,
whether it’s stocks, whether it’s life insurances
or whatever it is, annuities. Being able to understand that
that money is supposed to take–it’s supposed to grow,
compound interest, so being able to talk to young
people about compound interest is something that I talk
to a lot of athletes about, and it’s, like, something that
they don’t really understand until you start–you know,
until you start telling them, “It’s the greatest thing
in the world to be sitting home
and looking–” And to get a check
from somewhere or look at your stock
and see it jump exponentially every week or every year,
and so it’s a great thing to educate young people
on those type of things. [dynamic music]

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