How much do NFL players get paid in preseason?
The salaries of professional athletes always tend to be a talking point and where NFL players are specifically concerned, there is no exception.
The salaries of professional athletes always tend to be a talking point and where NFL players are specifically concerned, there is no exception. Yet amongst the mass amount of information on the internet about NFL salaries – the breakdowns of yearly costs, cap hits, dead caps, injury protections, etc – there is actually very little information to be found concerning how much they earn during the NFL’s preseason training camps. To that end, we have compiled what little we do know about the subject:
NFL salaries for training camp
The first thing to know is Yes, NFL players do indeed get paid during preseason training camps. The amount of money, however, depends on if the NFL player is a veteran or a rookie. According to CBS Baltimore, rookies will earn "per diem" payments from the first day of preseason training camp until one week prior to the NFL's regular season. These NFL players make about $850 per week.
Meanwhile, veteran players are paid more. Veteran players are defined as players who have played more than one season in the league. These players also receive "per diem" payments, starting on the first day of camp and ending one week before the regular season. Their salaries, however, are significantly greater in that they are almost double that of rookies. In total they pocket $1,600 per week.
So when we consider the month long training camps – which start at the end of July and finish at the end of August – rookies will make $3,400 per month while the veterans will take home $6,400. As the saying goes, ‘not bad for a rookie.’
What’s this about "per diem?”
The most interesting aspect of the payment structure and schedule is that it is "per diem" or "per day." American football is a contact sport and as such the risk of injury is present day by day. In addition to this it is also determined by the ability of the player to ‘survive the camp.’ For each day that a rookie or veteran can maintain, they are compensated that same day, according to CBS Baltimore.
It’s also noteworthy the benefit this has where accounting and book keeping is concerned as players come and go frequently during training camp. Some players only last a few days while others have different concerns like traveling great distances in order to attend camp. For such players it’s understandably important to receive compensation as soon as possible.
Last but not least is an aspect of the compensation structure which isn’t mentioned often and that is the issue of accommodation. There are many players who attend the preseason training camps in locations where they do not live and as such require room and board. The cost of this housing is covered entirely by the team. In light of this players can ‘rest easy’ in the knowledge that any money made can go directly to their personal expenses and not towards costs incurred while trying to qualify for the team. Additionally this helps to keep players focused on the task at hand which quite simply is to attain a spot on the roster for the season to come.
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