Trevor Lawrence, the former star quarterback for Clemson and this year's number one prospect in the NFL Draft, has signed an endorsement deal with Blockfolio, a site that lets you buy, sell and track Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Lawrence is set to be the number one pick of this year's NFL Draft taking place from the 29th through May 1st. Lawrence will be paid in cryptocurrency for the deal.
Sam Bankman-Fried, the CEO of the FTX exchange, which also owns Blockfolio, said, "We’re really trying to get our name out a lot. Trevor was excited about crypto. That’s what drew us to him.”
The terms of Blockfolio's deal with Lawrence were not disclosed. A spokesman noted to The New York Times that the signing bonus for the deal was already worth more on Sunday than when it was deposited on Friday.
The deal between Blockfolio and Lawrence represents a growing trend of mainstream use by athletes and professional sports programs. While Lawrence is only being paid in cryptocurrency for this endorsement deal, there are a number of other individual athletes that prefer the digital assets for their entire salaries.
On April 26th, the tight end for the Kansas City Cheifs, Sean Culkin, said he would be converting his entire 2021 NFL salary to Bitcoin in a tweet.
"I fully believe Bitcoin is the future of finance and I wanted to prove that I have real skin in the game — not just trying to make a quick buck. I will be converting my entire 2021 NFL salary to #Bitcoin."
Culkin later went on to create a lengthy thread on Twitter detailing his background in the finance space and why he believes in Bitcoin so much.
In May 2019, Russell Okung, an offensive tackle for the Carolina Panthers, tweet, "Pay me in bitcoin."
Okung then converted half of his $13 million salary into Bitcoin in late December of 2020 when it was around $27,000, effectively doubling that half.
Recently, the NBA team the Sacramento Kings, as well as the English Premier League team, Southampton, have announced they would allow their players, coaches and other employees to be paid in Bitcoin if they choose to.
Other teams have started to accept Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as forms of payment for tickets, including the Oakland Athletics and the Dallas Mavericks.
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