Today, ESPN.com’s Joe Schad reported that University of Louisville Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater has taken out a $10 million insurance policy on his body. This strongly suggests Bridgewater, a junior, will forgo his senior year and enter the 2014 NFL Draft, where he’s unanimously regarded as a high first round pick.
Louisville Junior QB Teddy Bridgewater said he took out a $10 million insurance policy
— Joe Schad (@schadjoe) July 29, 2013
So are big ticket insurance policies worth it for college athletes?
According to the L.A Times, the premium for $10 million of coverage totals to approximately $80,000. The policy only covers career-ending injuries, which in an age of modern medicine are a rarity. Fellow Louisville Cardinal Kevin Ware suffered a horrific injury last march and reports are already surfacing he’ll be back by October. There’s really only a handful of injuries in college sports every decade that would qualify for such a policy to be paid out in full, think Eric LeGrand.
Bridgewater isn’t the first player from the potential 2014 draft class to insure against injury. Jadeveon Clowney took out a $5 million policy and Johnny Manziel took out a policy for an undisclosed amount earlier this year. Policies such as these are becoming much more popular. Around 100 student-athletes take out a similar insurance policy to Bridgewater’s every year. Most likely none of them will be paid out because even major injuries are repairable enough for insurance companies to claim they’re not “career-ending.”
The insurance many athletes need are policies that cover the loss in salary when a player drops from a projected first round pick to a third or fourth round pick, which happens to a handful of prospects every draft class. For example, USC quarterback Matt Barkley was touted as a top-5 prospect heading into the 2012 NFL Draft, he chose to play out his senior season and dropped to the forth round. An athlete buying a policy covering the once in a decade injury is like buying health insurance with a $500,000 deductible, it’s just not a smart investment.
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