NFL guys love their “rides”, but what a variety out there in the “players only” section of NFL stadium parking lots! These guys also indulge in the occasional exotic SUV rental Miami or luxury car rental Miami, like when the urge for a new Ferrari F430 Spider rental is too much to ignore. But what lurks in their garages?
Many, like NFL Most Valuable Player, Peyton Manning of the Colts, and the legendary Brett Favre of the Vikings, are pretty practical, and just drive an Escalade and Escalade rental Miami, but some of the league’s young guns with new-found money, like to do it up, and like show-offs everywhere, they do want to stand out, so it makes for quite a mix.
Seattle Seahawks quarterback, Matt Hasselbeck, is not a classic-car owner, but while preferring the newer rides, he respects the unspoken rule of the locker room millionaires:
“You don’t go out and get the same exact same car as another guy on the team. Not cool to do that.”
Hasselbeck drives high-end Infiniti sports models, mostly the 2009 FX50 and a 2008 QX56 for his wife, and also owns a Volkswagen Phaeton that his younger brother often borrows.
“In our parking lot, I’ve got teammates that drive Maseratis and Bentleys, and I laugh when I roll up in my Infiniti and park next to them,” he says.
NFL locker-room talk often turns to cars, and it becomes a common denominator as players move throughout the league for games or when they change teams in trades or free agent signings.
Some players’ fascination with classic cars is nostalgic. The running back, Michael Bennett, chose his1973 Chevrolet Caprice in memory of an important and much-loved man from his youth.
“My grandfather had that car when I was a young kid,” says Bennett. “Always loved it.”
Lately, Bennett has been working on a collection of his own that is impressive and may inspire a similar legacy. He owns a 2007 Bentley Continental GT, a 2008 Lamborghini Murcielago LP640, a 2007 Range Rover Sport and a 2007 Rolls-Royce Phantom.
But those are “newbies” compared to some of the tastes of big-name NFL players, current and past. Consider the choice of retired New York Giants superstar defensive end, Michael Strahan, now an analyst on NFL broadcasts. A 1963 Lincoln Continental, nicknamed “the JFK car,” after the Lincoln limousine that President John F. Kennedy used, Strahan’s Continental was a project. Picked up in Michigan, he had the interior refurbished, had the long-neglected engine bay gutted, had the engine rebuilt, and added a GPS navigation system and suspension hydraulics.
The ’63 Lincoln was Strahan’s first classic car, and it joined a formidable stable of newer rides, including an Aston Martin V12 Vanquish, two Bentleys and a Maybach, just to name a few.
“The Lincoln is a whole different vibe,” says Strahan, “You’re not going to sneak anywhere in it. It’s such a big car, and it’s so obvious. It throws people back.”
Nostalgia notwithstanding, that head-turning uniqueness is what makes classic cars so appealing to NFL players who care about their rides.
“Nothing quite gets the attention like the old-school,” Strahan says.
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