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What is Aaron Donald’s Net Worth and Salary?
Aaron Donald is an American professional football player who has a net worth of $60 million. Aaron Donald is probably best known for his time playing for the Los Angeles Rams. Before this, he was a star player at the University of Pittsburgh, earning unanimous All-American honors. Widely considered to be one of the greatest defensive players in football history, Donald won Super Bowl LVI with the Rams in 2022.
In 2018 Aaron signed a six-year, $135 million contract with the Rams. An impressive $87 million of his $135 million contract is guaranteed. At that point this contract made him the highest-paid defensive player in league history, a record that has since been topped by the $28 million being paid to T.J. Watt by the Steelers.
Between June 2018 and June 2019, Aaron Donald earned $40 million from salary and endorsements.
Early Life and High School
Aaron Donald was born on May 23, 1991 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to a working-class family in the Lincoln-Lemington-Belmar neighborhood. As a teen, he went to Penn Hills High School, where he played football. In his senior year, Donald recorded 63 tackles and 11 sacks.
Turning down scholarships from Akron, Rutgers, and Toledo, Donald committed to the University of Pittsburgh for college. As a freshman with the Pittsburgh Panthers football team, he played as a reserve defensive end in all 13 season games, and posted 11 tackles. Donald subsequently had his breakthrough year as a sophomore; moving to the starting lineup, he recorded 47 tackles and 11 sacks during the season. He did even better as a junior, posting 64 tackles and earning a first-team All-Big East selection. Finally, as a senior, Donald was among the most productive defensive players in the NCAA with his 59 tackles and 11 sacks. As a result, he was chosen as the ACC Defensive Player of the Year and received unanimous All-American honors.
St. Louis Rams
In the 2014 NFL Draft, Donald was chosen in the first round with the 13th overall pick by the St. Louis Rams. That September, he made his regular-season debut in a 6-34 loss to the Minnesota Vikings. In the following game, a 19-17 win against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Donald posted three tackles and his first NFL sack. He later had his first NFL start in a loss to the San Francisco 49ers in October. Donald concluded his rookie season with 47 tackles and nine sacks in 16 games. He won the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year Award for his efforts.
Donald began the 2015 season as a starting defensive tackle, and recorded nine tackles and two sacks in a season-opening win against the Seattle Seahawks. For his performance, he earned his first NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors. Donald was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week for a second time in Week 14, when he posted a career-high three sacks in a win against the Detroit Lions. He finished his second season with the Rams with 69 tackles and 11 sacks, and received a first-team All-Pro selection.
Los Angeles Rams, 2016-2018
In the 2016 season, the Rams moved to Los Angeles. Donald had a rough beginning to the season, as he was ejected during the fourth quarter of the season opener for making illegal contact with a referee. Four days after the incident, he was fined around $21,000 for unsportsmanlike behavior. Donald bounced back a few weeks later when he helped the Rams defeat the Arizona Cardinals, earning himself his third NFC Defensive Player of the Week award in the process. However, he soon got into more trouble when he was fined $18,000 for unsportsmanlike behavior during a game against the Lions. Donald finished the regular season with 47 tackles and eight sacks. Despite his initial non-participation due to a contract dispute at the start of the next season, Donald went on to have a successful 2017. In addition to his Pro Bowl and first-team All-Pro selections, he was named NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
Donald had his best season yet with the Rams in 2018. For the month of October, he was named NFC Defensive Player of the Month in recognition of his 17 tackles and eight sacks. Later, after posting three sacks in a win against the Cardinals in Week 16, Donald set a new single-season sack record with 19.5 total sacks. He increased this number to 20.5 in the regular-season finale, a win over the 49ers. Donald was subsequently named a first-team All-Pro, and earned his second straight NFL Defensive Player of the Year award. Moving on to the postseason, he helped the Rams to Super Bowl LIII, where they ultimately fell to the New England Patriots.
Los Angeles Rams, 2019-2021
Donald had a solid 2019 season, finishing with 48 tackles and 12.5 sacks. He was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week for Week 11, and was also chosen for the Pro Bowl. He was selected for the Pro Bowl again the following season after recording 45 tackles and 13.5 sacks; moreover, he earned his third NFL Defensive Player of the Year award.
Donald’s 2021 season was marked by both bad behavior and incredible success on the field. In Week 12, he was fined $10,000 for choking Green Bay Packers offensive lineman Lucas Patrick. Later, in the Wild Card round, he got into trouble for choking Cardinals offensive tackle D. J. Humphries. Ultimately, Donald had an impressive regular-season record of 84 tackles and 12.5 sacks. He went on to help the Rams make it to Super Bowl LVI. In the tournament against the Cincinnati Bengals, Donald recorded two sacks en route to a 23-20 win for the Rams, the team’s first Super Bowl title since 1999 and its first in Los Angeles.
With his ex-girlfriend Jaelynn Blakey, Donald has two children named Jaeda and Aaron Jr. Since then, he married Erica Sherman, a former marketing employee for the Los Angeles Rams who went on to work for the Hollywood production company game1. The couple has a son named Aaric.
In March 2019, Aaron and his wife Erica paid $4.7 million for a large home in a Calabasas gated community that is peppered with celebrities. In April 2022 the Donalds placed this home on the market for $6.25 million: