Cards’ Hopkins: ‘I almost got kicked out of middle school for selling candy’

Dec 5, 2020, 12:25 PM | Updated: 5:01 pm

Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins (10) makes a catch against the Buffalo Bills during...

Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins (10) makes a catch against the Buffalo Bills during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

It’s been a year to remember for Arizona Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins, from ranking fourth in the NFL in receiving yards to getting named to Forbes’ “30 Under 30” list.

The eighth-year wideout discussed his entrepreneurial mindset and how he came to run his own real estate company on a call with media on Friday.

“I bought the first house that I grew up in, that was my first real estate purchase after I got into the NFL. My mom’s mortgage of course was terrible, part of the system that doesn’t serve certain people,” Hopkins said.

“I think she had a 500-year mortgage, or that’s what it seemed like. So I paid that off once I got into the NFL and I started renting out that house to college students and that sparked my interest.”

Hopkins said he’s always had an interest in business dealings, dating back to his middle school days in Clemson, S.C.

“I’ve always been an entrepreneur honestly. I almost got kicked out of middle school for selling candy, true story,” Hopkins said. “So I always had that entrepreneurship in me. The NFL put me around a lot of great people, a lot of business-minded, like-minded people that has helped me develop.

“But it’s definitely opened up the door for me to just get a meeting with a lot of people from what I do for a living.”

Whether Hopkins’ business acumen has helped him rank in the top-5 league-wide in receiving yards (967), receiving yards per game (87.9) and receptions (77) is hard to quantify.

What is clear is that Hopkins has had little trouble succeeding on and off the field during his professional career, whether in Houston or Arizona.

Much of that success, it appears, can be traced back to the schoolyard candy sales that Hopkins made growing up in South Carolina.

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