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NFL Tight End Culkin Goes Long on Bitcoin, Takes Salary in Crypto

Sean Culkin, a tight end for the NFL's Kansas City Chiefs, will take his 2021 salary in bitcoin.
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Sean Culkin, a tight end for the NFL's Kansas City Chiefs, said he would take his 2021 salary in bitcoin, yet another sign of bitcoin mania.

The Chiefs will pay his salary in dollars, which will automatically be converted to bitcoin on a weekly basis through Strike by Zap. That’s an application that enables users to make bitcoin payments via bank account or debit card. Culkin’s base salary is $920,000.

“Considering my career — particularly its physical demands, and brevity – it makes the most sense to be paid in sound money that I believe protects its purchasing power over time,” Culkin said in a statement.

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“From a macro standpoint, I believe we are in the beginning stage of Bitcoin’s shift away from being extremely speculative, to a legitimate asset class viewed as a store of value.”

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Culkin may well be right. But if he’s wrong, his salary could depreciate in value quickly. Bitcoin plunged 14% just from April 19 to April 24.

The player said he’s not recommending that everyone in the working world follow his lead. He’s reportedly the first NFL player to receive all his salary in bitcoin.

Bitcoin recently traded at $53,574, up 8.4%. 

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It’s on track for its biggest bounce since February following a tweet about bitcoin from Tesla  (TSLA) - Get Tesla Inc. Report Chief Executive Elon Musk that appears to have reinstilled faith in the world’s largest cryptocurrency.

Over the weekend interviewed bitcoin experts Bobby Ong of CoinGecko and Dave Balter of Flipside Crypto about the digital asset.