Mel Kiper Jr. is considered one of the premier NFL draft analysts; he has been doing it for most of his life.
But, many people wonder, what he is worth?
We take a look at everything to know.
How Much Is Mel Kiper Jr. Worth?
Mel Kiper Jr. has a net worth of $7 million.
Kiper is 60 years old and has been working at ESPN since 1984.
His annual salary in 1984 was $400.
Kiper was not discouraged by the meager paycheck or humble beginnings.
It all started in his senior year of high school.
In the basement of his parent’s house, Kiper developed an October draft preview, an annual draft book, newsletters, and a complete free agent report.
He is a Baltimore native who got the nudge to be a draft analyst from former Baltimore Colts GM Ernie Accorsi.
Kiper took Accorsi’s advice and dropped out of Essex Community College.
His success did not come easily, but Ernie Accorsi recognized that Kiper was offering comprehensive analysis that was not prevalent in the NFL at that time.
“All these other kids were running around getting autographs and instead he was there giving me his draft lists, ranking college players.”
This rags to riches story makes us wonder what Mel Kiper’s salary is and what he is worth.
“You gotta pay your dues. When I started out, we were losing money. We lost money for the first four years in this business, in terms of putting out draft reports. We never knew if we’d make a dollar, but you keep going.”
From Kiper’s accounts, it took about twenty years for him to earn a six figure income from ESPN.
Mel Kiper published his first draft guide in 1979 as a 19-year-old community college freshman.
— Busted Coverage (@bustedcoverage) May 7, 2014
He also says his draft publications generated most of his income especially in the early years.
Kiper is not always correct, and many like to talk about when he is not.
Perhaps, Kiper’s most memorable moment came in 1994 when Indianapolis Colts GM Bill Tobin was not fond of Kiper’s opinion.
The drama unfolded about what the Colt’s should do with their 3 first-round picks.
“I think it was a typical Colts move,” Kiper said to host Chris Berman. “The Colts needed a quarterback. To pass up a Trent Dilfer when all you have is Jim Harbaugh — give me a break. That’s why the Colts are picking second every year in the draft and not battling for the Super Bowl like other clubs in the National Football League.”
But he will always be recognized as the pioneer in this field and has inspired the generations after him to follow his career path.
1984 was @MelKiperESPN's 1st year at ESPN. He didn't make much money.
Think of a number.
It's less than that.
— The Favorites Podcast (@TheFavoritesPod) February 26, 2020
Rotoworld Draft analyst Josh Norris, 25, said:
“I saw the fact he could do this full time and I thought, ‘Why not me?’ Everyone has to start somewhere, and he shows it’s possible.”
Bleacher Report draft analyst Matt Miller said:
“I don’t think my job would exist without him. He kind of laid the groundwork for that role of analyst-evaluator.”
Regarding retirement, Kiper does not know when that day will come.
“I don’t worry about anybody saying goodbye, we don’t need you anymore. It’s going to come a time when that’s the case, maybe. I don’t know.”
“Maybe I’ll walk away. I’m not going to be on the draft until I’m 75. You never know what your status is going to be with everybody. At some point in time, I think I will walk away. … I do not need to work another day in my life.”
In the meantime, Mel is getting ready for yet another draft day.