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Peyton Manning No. 10 among Forbes' richest athletes


When Forbes dropped its list of highest paid coaches for 2012, let's just say Around the League had a few issues with the rankings. For starters, Forbes placed Bill Belichick at the top of the heap, when his contract remains a national secret. Suspect rankings at best.

Forbes' list of the world's 100 highest-paid athletes isn't as problematic.

After stomaching the fact that boxer Floyd Mayweather and his $85 million rank No. 1, the list gives way to a flood of NFL players. The league registered 30 among the top 100, more than any other sport.

It comes as no surprise that Peyton Manning and his $42.4 million led the way, good enough for No. 10, behind a smattering of soccer players, boxers and LeBron James. Manning can thank the Indianapolis Colts for $26.4 million of his haul and the Denver Broncos for the rest. Peyton raked in another $10 million-plus in endorsement deals. (All of this is awkward, considering Manning was last seen crashing on Mike Shanahan's floor.)

Forbes compiled the list based on athletes' "salaries, bonuses, prize money, appearance fees, as well as licensing and endorsement income" from June 2011 to June 2012.

We were admittedly caught off guard by the NFL's second-richest athlete, Baltimore Ravens defensive tackle Haloti Ngata, who landed at No. 12 with $37.3 million. The rest of the list is filled with names you'd expect: Arizona Cardinals wideout Larry Fitzgerald (No. 13); Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh (14th) and Buffalo Bills quarterback-wrecker Mario Williams at No. 17.

Little-old Eli Manning, despite winning his second Super Bowl with the New York Giants, was all the way down at No. 30. We expect that to change down the road.

This time around, there's not much to disagree with.


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