I thought it would be
interesting to see what the projected salary and benefits would be for an NFL
player during the course of the new CBA. The amounts are calculated for a
player that was a rookie in 2011 and plays until 2020 – a ten year period.
Most, but not all of the benefits are available to vested players (3 credited
Here they are:
NFL Salary: $20 Million (2
million annually for 10 years) The average salary for 2012 was $2 million. The
median annual salary was $790,000. When factoring in a typical signing bonus,
roster bonus and incentives, these numbers can go up well into the $2 to $3
million range. I should also note that the average salary will continue to
increase over the course of the new CBA. Here is a link to the average salary
by position:Average NFL salaries.
Minimum Salary Benefit: $7 Million for
a player earning the minimum salary over the 10 year period of the CBA. This is
only the base salary and does not include signing bonuses, roster bonuses or
incentives. In the new CBA, the minimum salary for all NFL players was
initially increased by $55,000 over the 2010 amounts. The amounts increase
another $15,000 for each of the first four years of the CBA. In 2013, rookies
Players with one year of service earn$480,000;
Four to six years$715,000; Seven to nine years$840,000. For players with 10 years or more of service, the minimum salary
Performance Based Pay Plan:$110 million annually in
a mandatory distribution of the funds to players. Players have been paid nearly $700 million cumulatively
since the inception of the program, which was implemented as part of the NFL's
2002 CBA. Players earn varying amounts of money under the plan, therefore it is
difficult to determine what any individual player would earn over a 10 year
period. The average payout would
be approximately $42,307 ($110 million ÷ 2,600 players). The top payout in 2012 was $299,465 to Cincinnati Bengals player, Vontaze Burfict an
undrafted free agent. Check out this link for
more info on the payouts under the 2012 PBP.
Annuity Plan: $525,000 (this amount does not include earned interest that will accrue)
This benefit is for players that have at least 4 credited seasons. The amounts
are$65,000annually for each of the years 2011-2013.$80,000for
each of the years 2014-2017, and$95,000for each year from 2018-2020. For the purposes of this example, a
rookie in 2011 would begin receiving the owner contribution to his Annuity from
2015 to 2020. If a player who was already vested in 2010, played until 2020
they would have $800,000 in their Annuity.
Second Career Savings Plan: $256,000 inowner
contributions and $85,333 in player contributions, for a total of$341,333. Owners match 2 dollars for every 1 dollar a player contributes –
up to the following limits: $24,000 for each of the years 2011-2014, $26,000
for each of the years 2015-2018 and $28,000 for each of the years 2019-20120.
ie. A player would need to deduct $12,000 from their salary and put it into the
savings plan in order to receive the maximum owner contribution of $24,000 in
Severance Pay Plan: $200,000 Based on the number of credited seasons a player has earned. For
this hypothetical 10 year player, he would receive $15,000 for the 2011 season, $17,500 for each season 2012-2013,
$20,000 for each season 2014-2016 and $22,500 for each of the seasons 2017-2020.
Tuition Assistance Plan: $60,000 for reimbursement of expenses for tuition, fees and books incurred
within 4 years after the last regular season, or post season game. A player
must have at least 5 credited seasons to be eligible for this benefit. A player
must receive a grade of "C" or better in order to be reimbursed.
Gene Upshaw NFL Player Health
Reimbursement Account: $350,000 (can be used to pay for all health and medical related costs –
including the cost of annual premiums for staying on the NFL's group insurance
policy. A player must have three credited seasons to be eligible for this
Life Insurance:$1,600,000 Rookies begin with a $600,000 policy that is increased by $200,000 for
each credited season up to the maximum of $1,600,000.
Group Licensing Agreement: $120,000 (estimate based on an annual royalty of $12,000 paid equally to
all active players for allowing the League to use their images for marketing
and promotion of the NFL.) It was first negotiated in the 1993 CBA. The NFLPA's
2012 LM-2 showed that active players receive $31,274,485 in royalties in 2011.
Divide that amount by 2,600 players and you get approximately $12,000 annually.
Although the GLA money is not considered a benefit, it surely benefits all
Individual Licensing Agreements
through NFL Players inc.: Many active players also take advantage of the individual
marketing opportunities offered by the NFLPA. For example, in 2011, Adrian
Peterson was paid $200,000 and Adrian Peterson All Day Inc. received $323,704.
That's over half a million dollars in total. Here are a few others: Clay
Matthews – $477,750, Cam Newton – $329,579, Chad Ochocinco - $263,798,
Dez Bryant – $155,144, Andre Johnson – $140,000, Demarcus Ware – $61,871
and Frank Gore – $28,982 The average amount for most active players seems to be
around $10,000 to $20,000. Again, this is not listed as a player benefit, but
as you can see it obviously benefits the active players.
5 years of Free Medical
Insurance after retirement: $78,725 ($15,745
annually for family coverage) or $28,075 ($5,615 for single
coverage) These amounts are based on the average annual cost of medical
insurance policy for 2012.
Extended Post-Career Medical
and Dental Benefits: After
the 5 free years of medical coverage, the NFL is now allowing players who are
vested and have a credited season in 2011 to continue coverage under the NFL's
group medical insurance program. The NFL is obligated to pay no more than $16 million annually for
these benefits under the new CBA. Former players must pay the
annual deductible of $600 for individual and $1,200 for a family
policy. This goes up to $850 for an individual policy and $1,700 for a family
policy for years 2016-2020. The value of this benefit is enormous. Due to the
injuries players sustained in the NFL, many are not able to find private
insurance on the open market that will cover them. If they can find coverage,
it is very expensive due to their pre-existing conditions.
And last, but definitely not
NFL Pension Plan: $201,453 annually at age 65 or $76,920 annually at
age 55. For the purposes of this example, the owners would contribute $470 for
the players credited season in 2011, $560 for each credited season from
2012-2014, $660 for each credited season from 2015-2017 and $760 for each
credited season 2018-2020.
NFL Disability: Under
the terms of the new CBA, for claims filed after September 1, 2011, a player
will no longer have to prove that his total disability is related to NFL
football to obtain the higher category of disability benefits, as long as his
application is filed within 15 years of his last credited season. ("Inactive A"
disability effectively replaces "football degenerative") For players who
retired more than 15 years ago, and found entitled to disability, they will
receive a lower paying benefit even if their disability is totally football
These are the Total and
Permanent disability plan annual payments for "Active" players whose
applications are approved under the Active and Non-Active Football categories
and for "Retired" players whose applications are approved under the Inactive A
and B categories. The annual amounts are only for applications received on, or
after September 1, 2011.
Active Football $250,000 (increased
to $265,000 effective Jan.1, 2016)
Active Non-Football $150,000 (increased
to $165,000 effective Jan. 1, 2016)
Inactive A $120,000 (increased to $135,000 effective Jan.1, 2016)
Inactive B $50,000 (increased to $60,000 effective January 1, 2016)
Line of Duty Disability: Not less than $2,000 a month and increased by $500 a month every other year
beginning in 2013.If
a player incurs a substantial disablement arising out of League football
activities (but is not totally and permanently disabled), they may be eligible
for "Line of Duty" disability benefits. Duration of payments:7-1/2
years. Application time: Greater
of four (4) years or the number of years equal to your Credited Seasons. For
example, if you are a player with 10 Credited Seasons, you will be able to
apply for Line of Duty benefits at any time up to 10 years after you cease to
be an Active Player.
Vested players are also
eligible for benefits under the Former Player Life Improvement Plan, the Long
Term Care Plan, the 88 Plan and the Neuro-Cognitive Benefit, but these
benefits are not guaranteed after the expiration of the CBA in 2020.
There are other provisions in
the CBA that are not classified as benefits, like Termination Pay and Injury
Protection, but even so, they are very beneficial to active players.
So there you have it.
Not bad for the player that is
fortunate to play the entire length of the 2011-2020 CBA.