Richest AthletesNFL Players
Net Worth:
$2 Million
Nov 25, 1963 (60 years old)
American football player
United States of America
💰 Compare Bernie Kosar's Net Worth

What is Bernie Kosar's Net Worth?

Bernie Kosar is a retired American football quarterback who has a net worth of $2 million. Bernie Kosar played in the NFL from 1985 to 1996. As we detail throughout this article, unfortunately Bernie Kosar is one of many former professional athletes who have experienced extreme financial hardship or have even gone broke at some point during their retirement years. Bernie was prominently featured in an episode of the ESPN docuseries "30 for 30" titled "Broke." In the episode Bernie revealed that at one point he learned his father used some of his NFL earnings to pay for mortgages and car payments AND had his own side-deal with the Cleveland Browns that paid the father $1 million. As we detail later in this article, Bernie himself experienced a series of financial problems through bad investments that ultimately saw him file for bankruptcy in 2009.

NFL Career

Bernie played for the Cleveland Browns from 1985 to 1993. He was picked up by the Dallas Cowboys partway through the 1993 season. He spent his final two seasons with the Miami Dolphins serving as a backup quarterback to Dan Marino.

Kosar played college football at the University of Miami then, after much controversy throughout the drafting process, signed on with the Cleveland Browns in 1985. Times with the Cleveland Browns were not exactly shiny and full of accolades. Kosar's later years with Cleveland were dampened by injuries and dwindling support around the unlikely quarterback. To quite literally add insult to injury, in 1991 the Browns hired Bill Belichick as head coach. Not a big fan of Kosar, Belichick had signed quarterback Vinny Testaverde (Kosar's former college teammate) before the 1993 season. Early in the year, Belichick benched Kosar in favor of Testaverde. An injury to Testaverde returned Kosar to the field. From the Cleveland Browns, Kosar moved on to fill in for an injured Troy Aikman for the Dallas Cowboys and earned his only championship ring as a backup in the Super Bowl XXVIII.

Kosar finished out his career with the Miami Dolphins as a backup quarterback to Dan Marino and is perhaps best remembered for a trick play that helped the Dolphins top the Jets in a crucial game late in 1994. With the clock winding down and the Dolphins trailing by three, Marino pretended to spike the ball to stop the clock. He then threw the winning touchdown pass to Mark Ingram.

Kosar finished his 12-season career with 1,994 completions in 3,365 attempts for 23,301 yards and 124 touchdowns, with 87 interceptions. He also rushed for 265 yards and five touchdowns. Bernie Kosar held the NFL record for most consecutive completed passes without an interception until December 26, 2010, when New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady broke his record.

After retirement from football, Kosar moved on to other business ventures, such as opening a restaurant, becoming part-owner of the Florida Panthers (NHL), publishing a magazine and various philanthropic efforts.

Contracts and Career Earnings

In total, Bernie Kosar earned around $19 million in NFL salary during his career. Here's how those career earnings break down:

Upon entering the NFL in 1985 Bernie Kosar signed a 5-year $5.2 million contract with the Cleveland Browns that came with a $1 million signing bonus then equated to $840,000 in average salary per season.

In July 1989 Bernie signed a six-year contract with Cleveland that could have ultimately been worth $15 million and came with a $3 million signing bonus. As we explain in a moment, he likely only earned around $7.5 million from this deal.

In late 1993 Bernie signed a seven-year, $27 million contract extension with the Browns that should have made him one of the highest-paid quarterbacks of all time (up to that point). Unfortunately he was cut from the team just FIVE WEEKS after signing the deal. He did receive $4 million from the deal, which was guaranteed.

He then signed a one-year, $1 million deal with the Dallas Cowboys.

In his last two seasons with Miami, Bernie earned between $600,000 and $700,000 per year, depending on various performance bonuses.

Bernie Kosar net worth



In June 2009, in the aftermath of the global recession, Bernie and his several business ventures declared bankruptcy. In a filing he would later reveal that he had $9.2 million worth of assets and $18.9 million worth of liabilities. The filing would also, somewhat shockingly, reveal that Bernie had just $44 in his checking account at the time.

Listed among his liabilities was:

  • $1.5 million owed to the Cleveland Browns as "unsecured debt"
  • $3 million owed to his ex-wife
  • $9 million owed to a bank for real estate deals that had gone bust
  • $725,000 personal loan from the owner of the Cleveland Gladiators Arena Football League

His personal bankruptcy was initially filed as a Chapter 11 restructuring but a bankruptcy court would later change the filing to a Chapter 7 liquidation. The only asset that was fully protected by his bankruptcy was his NFL pension, which likely pays Bernie around $200,000 per year.

Florida Mansion

In May 2006, Bernie paid $3.499 million for a 10,000 square foot waterfront home in Weston, Florida. The home is located within the same gated community that at the time was also home to Dan Marino. By 2009 when he declared bankruptcy, he had reportedly not paid taxes on the home for several years and was facing a potential foreclosure. He finally sold the mansion in October 2010 for $2.1 million.

Ohio Farm

In September 2012 Bernie paid $1.35 million for a 95-acre farm in Mantua, Ohio.

All net worths are calculated using data drawn from public sources. When provided, we also incorporate private tips and feedback received from the celebrities or their representatives. While we work diligently to ensure that our numbers are as accurate as possible, unless otherwise indicated they are only estimates. We welcome all corrections and feedback using the button below.
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