Long gone are the days in which Ja’Marr Chase worked for free at a snowball stand in Louisiana. After signing a four-year, $30.8 million contract with the Cincinnati Bengals last year, his first big purchase was a black Maserati for his mother, Chase told GQ.
The fifth overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft — who also received a $19.8 million signing bonus — said he used to be broke so the whole experience of making it to the NFL felt surreal. In a recent interview with GQ, Chase said he held back tears until he got to his hotel room on the night of the draft.
His mom owned an old Audi that did not have a functioning air conditioner anymore. Once he got his first paycheck, he made sure to take care of her before anything else.
“My pops came to me about it. She been having an Audi and the Audi was real bad,” he said. “The air stopped working in it, so she’s not about to try to ride around in no hot car. Gotta get her a car ASAP. “
Chase bought her a midnight black Maserati with a red interior. That was his first big purchase, costing him around $65,000. Giving her this gift was an emotional moment for both of them.
“She was crying, like tears of joy,” he said. “That was good to see. She made me start crying.”
After that car, Chase used part of his earnings to pay off his family home and give his siblings $15,000 each. He also treated himself by buying a $300,000 Rolls-Royce Wraith and $100,000 worth of jewelry and clothes.
There were a couple other purchases, but Chase ended up saving around $400,000 of his first million because he didn’t want to see all of it gone in case he needed it in the future.
“Just put it away, made sure I had it for a good day, family, friends. You know, something that is real important down the line,” he said. “Saving your money is way better than spending it. You don’t know how much you’re losing when you spend it, so trying to save is better.”