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Ricky Williams: Cannabis profits will dwarf lost NFL money

Williams says the money he lost due to failed NFL drug tests is “like pennies” compared to the profits his cannabis investments will generate. 

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Former NFL running back Ricky Williams believes the profits from his investments in the cannabis industry will dwarf the NFL money he lost as a result of failing drug tests, he told SI’s Greg Bishop.

Bishop’s longform special is a joint production with SI Films, which has produced an exclusive film on Williams in which he discusses his experience with marijuana use and his support for legalization. The film, “Ricky Williams Takes the High Road,” is the first in-depth look at Williams’s life five years after the end of his NFL career.

Williams estimates he lost between $5 million and $10 million in salary and endorsements between 2002 and ’06, during which time he failed four drug tests for using marijuana. He missed the entire 2006 season for violating the league’s substance abuse policy, before officially retiring after the 2011 season.

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Williams has now turned his attention to the cannabis industry, where he believes he will make back more than the money he forfeited.

“That money can make what I lost seem tiny, like pennies,” Williams said. 

He is the co-founder of a cannabis-friendly gym in San Francisco called Power Plant Fitness and Wellness, and also hopes to make money by giving speeches as a cannabis activist and selling marijuana-infused nutritional supplements and healing products. He wants to eventually open a chain of sports-themed marijuana social clubs.

Watch the SI film on Williams here, and read Bishop’s full story here.