Football players are known for their dedication and tenacity on the field, and these character traits are also perfect for playing a good game of poker. Many players, including NFL legend Emmitt Smith, enjoy playing poker to blow off some steam between games and have turned those skills into a second career in their retirement.
Emmitt Smith was inducted to the Pro Football Hall of Fame a decade ago in 2010. He smashed so many records during his time on the field – he was an unstoppable force that crushed the opposition – and nowadays he takes his tenacity and determination to the poker table.
He has competed in some big poker games and has been seen playing on tables in televised poker tournaments. He seems to do well and has had a few large wins in both organized tournaments and in casual games at casinos across the country. Though it is more of a hobby than a career for Emmitt, don’t be surprised if this cowboy wins a few poker trophies to sit next to all of his football awards at home. He could be in the poker playing hall of fame in the next decade!
Richard Seymour is another ex-NFL star enjoying a second career as a poker player. The six-foot six-inch ‘gentle giant’ was an excellent defensive lineman and now takes his ability to see the play to poker tables around the world. He also competes in pro-poker tournaments and finished third in a pro tournament, bringing home over $350,000 in winnings.
He, like many professional and amateur poker players, practices the sport at an online casino to hone his skills before a big tournament to stay sharp. He has competed in many tournaments and walked away with a lot of prize money, so he must be on to something.
Sammy Watkins was a formidable player on the field and enjoyed a lot of success. He enjoys playing poker so much off the field, however, that it got him into trouble with his teammates.
All pro-players in all pro-sports sign contracts that come with a lot of clauses, including a clause that they agree to train and practice in the off-season to maintain fitness and stay sharp. In 2016, Sammy fell afoul of one of these clauses when he was playing for the Buffalo Bills. Instead of turning up to practice and spending some time working on his fitness and bonding with his teammates, Sammy was playing poker in North Carolina with some college friends. He would have gotten away with it too, had he not decided to brag about his winnings on social media, which alerted the Bills to his unauthorized absence. He may have had to pay a fine for this infraction, but we can only hope that his winnings more than covered the cost!Poker players and football players have a very similar skillset, at least mentally. It is no surprise that so many have taken their skills from the football field to the poker table in their retirement.