John Madden was born in Austin, Minnesota, on April 10th, 1936. His father relocated the family to California in order to explore employment prospects as an auto mechanic. John was still a child at the time, having spent the majority of his childhood in a little town south of San Francisco.
He went to Jefferson High School after enrolling in a Catholic school. John Madden quickly rose through the ranks of the football team throughout his high school years. John was a gifted and dynamic young athlete who excelled on both the offensive and defensive lines. He was also an accomplished baseball player.
Football in College
When John Madden graduated from high school in 1954, he immediately enrolled in the College of San Mateo to play football. He transferred to the University of Oregon to study pre-law and play football after one season.
Madden’s playing career was halted by the first of two significant injuries he suffered while at Oregon. He had to sit out much of the season due to a knee operation.
John Madden returned to San Mateo after recovering from his first injury and played another season of football. He then transferred to California Polytechnic State University, where he was a member of the Mustangs’ offense and defense.
Madden established his worth as a football player once again, this time establishing himself as a powerful offensive lineman and earning all-conference accolades. While getting his BS in Education, he also played catcher for the college baseball team. He went on to earn his MA in Education in 1961.
Football on a Professional Level
Although John Madden did play professional football at one point, his career was effectively finished before it started. Madden was picked in the 21st round of the 1958 NFL draught by the Philadelphia Eagles, and it appeared for a time that he would be playing in the league.
During his first training camp, however, calamity struck. He experienced a career-ending knee injury (not the one that had previously been hurt), and that was the end of it.
Coaching as a Profession
John Madden acquired his teaching degrees in college while recovering from a knee ailment. He was also meeting with Norm Van Brocklin, whose career was winding down at the moment.
The former quarterback demonstrated Madden’s video games and explained what was going on in each play. Madden’s teaching credentials began to blend with his football expertise as he learned more about teaching. A career as a coach was a foregone conclusion.
Madden was working as an assistant coach at Allan Hancock College by 1960. He became the head coach two years later. He was then employed as an assistant defensive coach at San Diego State until 1966 when the team was regarded among the best in the country.
During this time, he worked under Don Coryell, a skilled tactician who Madden subsequently credited with his success as an NFL coach.
The Oakland Raiders signed John Madden as their linebacker coach in 1967. Madden learned from Al Davis, who had learned from Sid Gillman before him. Madden was so inadvertently adopting strategies from a man who transformed professional football.
By 1969, Davis had departed the team, leaving Madden, who was only 32 years old at the time, to take over as coach. As a result, John Madden became the NFL’s youngest head coach at the time.
John Madden is widely regarded as the greatest Raiders coach of all time. From 1969 until 1975, however, the team developed a reputation for losing major games. All of that changed in 1976 when they won the AFC Championship over their long-time rivals, the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The following year, they defeated the Minnesota Vikings in the Superbowl, winning it in 1977. By 1979, it was evident that coaching was having a negative impact on John Madden’s health, and he announced his retirement.
A Career in Television
John Madden began a long and distinguished career as a color commentator and analyst shortly after resigning from coaching. He eventually worked for Fox, CBS, ABC, and NBC, as well as several smaller networks.
He eventually rose to become one of the most in-demand television personalities in American sports, earning multi-million dollar contracts. NBC also promised to build Madden a “luxury train” to encourage him to join their network (John Madden is famously averse to flying).
Deal on a Video Game
John Madden was paid $8 million per year during the height of his broadcasting career, which equates to about $14 million now after inflation. Madden’s years of coaching and commentating have been overshadowed by his involvement in video games, despite his large salary.
In fact, the video game franchise that bears his name provided the great majority of John Madden’s personal income.
Electronic Arts have been publishing NFL video games using his name and likeness since 1988. Year after year, the series has been a commercial success, with more than 130 million copies sold to date.
EA Sports, a video game firm, signed a $300 million deal to become the NFL’s exclusive game developer in 2005. Around the same time, reports started circulating that EA was considering removing the “Madden” name from all future games.
It was later revealed that for a reputed $150 million, John Madden had inked a deal that would let his likeness and name be used in the games in perpetuity. In addition, until 2009, when he resigned, it is estimated that John Madden received roughly $2 million per year as a retainer.
John Madden was one of the first celebrities to earn over $1 million per year from sponsorships in the 1980s. He held endorsement arrangements with Miller Lite, Exxon, McDonald’s, Canon, and Ramada Inn during the 1980s.
Today, he is arguably most known for his Tenactin sponsorship agreement. His partnership with Tenactin alone paid him $2 million per year at his peak in the 2000s. Madden also had endorsement arrangements with companies including Ace Hardware, Outback Steakhouse, Verizon Wireless, Miller Lite, and Toyota later in his career.
What Was the Net Worth of John Madden?
Boom! John Madden was a great NFL player, sportscaster, and entrepreneur who died with a net worth of $200 million. At the age of 85, John Madden passed away on December 28, 2021. Despite having a successful career as a coach in the NFL, John Madden is arguably best remembered today for his exploits after his playing days were over.
He rose to prominence as an NFL analyst and eventually promoted “Madden NFL,” one of the most popular video game franchises of all time.
I’ll tune in, watch a game, come on Ireland… but at the end of the day I don’t really give a damn about it.
I guess I’m in a minority 🙄… or maybe not 😁 https://t.co/EBiTdDn9jZ
— John Madden (@johnmadden2706) November 21, 2021
John Madden was also a well-known writer who starred in numerous advertisements for a variety of products. He was the first broadcaster to earn a million dollars in a single year. He was also one of the first celebrities to earn more than $1 million from endorsements each year.
The “Madden” video game was responsible for the majority of Madden’s $200 million in wealth. There’s a lot more on this agreement at the bottom of the post…
Is John Madden Alive Today?
At the age of 85, John Madden DIED on December 28, 2021.
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