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Young NFL players learn unique financial game plan so they don’t go broke

Julia Limitone

Being an athlete can be a lucrative job with a lot of perks. But after retirement a harsh reality sets in for most NFL players.

A reported 78 percent of former NFL players end up filing for bankruptcy after just two years of retirement. But one wealth manager is taking a unique approach in order to promote financial literacy to young elites.

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Mark Doman of The Doman Group told FOX Business’ Liz Claman that professional athletes’ biggest issue when it comes to money is education. Doman created an internship program for athletes to learn how to manage their own money.

“If your biggest paycheck in life is your first paycheck -- that's not a great system for a young person to have their life savings entered into their life,” Doman explained.

Denver Broncos kicker and former NFL champion Brandon McManus joined the program after interviewing other financial advisers because of Domans’ strong emphasis on learning how to invest on his own.

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“We dove in and see exactly what each stock is… [and] everything about it,” he said.

But what is it exactly about Doman that the former competitors love and trust so much? Doman believes it’s that he’s completely up front about the fact that “trust doesn’t take months, it takes many years to really earn.”

So in the meantime, he said, his objective is to get them to understand that they will have to learn financial literacy to earn.

“The ultimate goal with them is to tell them that… we cannot guarantee you we're going to make the money," Doman said. "We can guarantee we're not going to steal it. We guarantee we're going to teach you about it. We're going to guarantee that they're going to know a lot more about their life savings than the impact it has on their life at such a young age.”

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For McManus, the one thing he’s learned from the program is that he’s “definitely a stocks guy.”

“I’m more of a risk-taker, especially being a kicker,” he said. "And, you know, in the NFL, I'm used to the high-pressure kicks that win the game at the end. So I love the... thrill of stocks.”

And it’s not just the NFL athletes dealing with money management issues. Former Boston Celtics star Antoine Walker lost $108 million in career earnings just two years after retiring from the league.

Doman’s biggest message to elite athletes, especially those who are young: “Understand the dollars when they come in.”

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