Not so long ago, Blake Martinez was widely recognized as one of the most impactful linebackers in the National Football League.
Martinez was a solid headhunter and an elite tackling machine, netting nearly $30 million across six years in the league.
Unfortunately, a major knee injury made the New York Giants prescind from his services, but he was still expected to make a comeback at some point.
That’s when he realized he could make as much — or even more — money from an unusual side hustle, all while keeping his body safe and sound.
Martinez started reselling Pokémon cards, and he’s now made over $5 million in just seven months in business, according to CNBC.
Former NFL LB Blake Martinez started his own card trading company shortly after retiring from football and has made over $5M in seven months 🤯
(via @meggsauer) pic.twitter.com/JEZpcxSkqQ
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) February 26, 2023
Needless to say, this was a bit of a shocking turn of events for a rising defensive star in the National Football League and one that many fans didn’t see coming.
Looks like he traded his pigskin for some Pikachu's, and made a fortune doing it! Who says you can't catch 'em all?
— Carlos Gil (@carlosgil83) February 27, 2023
No hits to the body and making bank good for him!!
— Noah Prabhakar (@prabhakar_noah) February 26, 2023
He would rather sell Pokémon cards than be a raider 😭😭😭😭
— Ezekiel 🇲🇽 (@e_figueroaaa) February 26, 2023
It’s nice to see former athletes thrive and succeed as entrepreneurs, something that hasn’t come too often in a ruthless business like the NFL.
It’s not usual to see former stars go bankrupt or waste their money shortly after being done playing, and it’s not like the league or the NFLPA do a lot to help them stay afloat.
So, yeah, of course, it’s a shame that we don’t get to see Blake Martinez doing his thing on the gridiron week in and week out.
But winners win, and smart people know how to adapt and adjust, and Martinez has proven to be a very, very smart guy.NEXT: The NFL Has Reportedly Issued A Warning To Teams At The Combine