By Brent Schwartz, CBS Boston Sports
BOSTON (CBS) — Former Patriots and Raiders defensive lineman Richard Seymour has traded sacks for stacks – of poker chips, that is. Since retiring from the NFL after the 2012 season, the three-time Super Bowl champion has become a regular on the professional poker circuit.
According to a new story by ESPN’s Bernard Lee, this is Seymour’s fourth consecutive summer playing in the World Series of Poker. He has earned a reported $125,000 playing poker since the end of his playing career.
Seymour has been active on Twitter, posting pictures of his earnings.
“It’s a game of people, situations, discipline,” said Seymour on a video at Patriots.com. “I felt like I honed in on all of those skills as I played.”
Seymour said he learned how to play from his father, and can recall when he fell in love with poker.
“I remember a moment where my heart beat was beating faster,” said Seymour. “I was just watching the guys around me. It was a really intense moment. That was the moment where I knew this is what I wanted to do.”
Seymour only played in the main event his first two years at the WSOP, but played in a preliminary event last year to better prepare himself. This year, he played in 4-5 prelims, recently finishing 24th out of 1,580 entrants in the $1,500 No-Limit Hold ‘Em event. His biggest recorded tournament prize was $52,174 for finishing 18th out of 791 entrants in the World Poker Tour’s Five Diamond World Poker Classic last December, which carried a $10,400 buy-in.
Seymour enjoys the element of luck in poker, that an amateur player can beat the best in the world with the right run of cards – the kind of good fortune that’s impossible in pro sports.
“If I played LeBron James in basketball, he’d beat me 10 out of 10 times,” said Seymour. “If I played the best poker player in the world, just with the variance of the cards, he wouldn’t beat me 10 out of 10 times.”
In addition to winning three Super Bowls with the Patriots, Seymour was named a first-team All-Pro three times during his career. He was also voted to seven Pro Bowls. Maybe some day he will add a World Series of Poker bracelet to his jewelry collection.