Ex-NFL star Nick Lowery proved he has some serious skills off the field — he was named the winner of the 2018 CNBC stock draft on Monday.
The former kicker for the Kansas City Chiefs and New York Jets, who was up against seven other teams, scored big with his picks of Amazon, Goldman Sachs and AMD. Lowery and the other competitors made one pick per round, for three rounds, in the draft last April. They chose from a list of 60 investments.
Lowery’s final score was based on the average performance of his three stock picks from the closing price on April 26, 2018, to last Friday’s close.
“Timing is everything,” said Lowery, who joked about unseating the 2017 champ, “Mr. Wonderful” Kevin O’Leary. “It just makes it extra special,” he said on “Power Lunch.”
O’Leary, chairman of O’Shares Investments, an investor on “Shark Tank” and a CNBC contributor, came in fifth place this time around, with his picks of Chevron, Blue Apron and Boeing. Blue Apron was among the worst-performing stocks in the draft – down 39 percent from the start of the contest.
AMD proved to be key to Lowery’s success. The semiconductor company is up more than 118 percent since April 27. However, Lowery didn’t select the stock until the third round — and it was the second-to-last pick in the draft.
The former football player likened the company to Julian Edelman, the wide receiver of the New England Patriots who was named Super Bowl MVP on Sunday. He said AMD had the endurance to stick with it and never compromised its standards.
“In the next year they are going to be taking more and more market share from the big giant, Intel,” Lowery predicted. “That’s an achievement and it’s only because [CEO] Lisa Su reaffirmed their values and their persistence to get it exactly right.”
Amazon was Lowery’s first pick in the draft. The stock, which was on fire most of last year and at one point hit $1 trillion in market value during intraday trading, fell into bear market territory Friday. The drop came after the company announced on a call with investors on Thursday that it would likely increase investment in 2019. It also said it had concerns about new regulation in India.
However, Amazon is still up more than 7 percent since the 2018 CNBC stock draft began.
Lowery compared the tech giant to the Patriots’ Bill Belichick, who won his sixth championship as head coach in Sunday’s Super Bowl. He also won two more Super Bowl titles as defensive coordinator for the New York Giants.
“He’s got core values and he is looking for intelligence and talent” and “that is what Amazon has done,” he said.
The investment bank was the worst-performing stock of Lowery’s picks, down about 17 percent since the start of the draft.
However, he’s still a believer in the name. Sticking with the Super Bowl theme, he compared the company to Patriots owner Robert Kraft. Like Kraft, Goldman re-established its dominance in its field, Lowery said. The Patriots lost the 2018 Super Bowl to the Philadelphia Eagles but came back for the win this year. And Goldman Sachs, he said, is once again an authority in mergers and acquisitions.
“You’re going to see a lot of $50 [billion] and $100 billion mergers from Goldman Sachs,” Lowery predicted.
Lowery will defend his title in the CNBC 2019 Stock Draft on April 25.
Disclosure: CNBC owns the exclusive off-network cable rights to “Shark Tank.”
— CNBC’s Stefanie Kratter contributed to this report.