50% is huge

i get the owners are greedy and want to pay the players less. but i argue it is none of my business so i look at the bottom line. businesses don't pay 50% of revenue (especially guaranteed before they know their profits) to their employees. there may be some that do but there is a place they go it's called bankruptcy. baseball is paying on average 46% of revenue to it's players but the payrolls range from $220mm to as low as $60mm. there is one thing we can all agree on this is not the way we want to see football go.

here are the 2009 NFL  figures ranked from the highest to lowest profits and the % of their revenue they are paying players. there are a few things that stick out here. if you want to make $, you can't pay 50%. the 10th most profitable team (the bears) paid 47.51% of revenue to team payroll but not one of the first nine paid above 43%. notice almost all the least profitable teams pay close to 50%. in fact, the league average was 42.97%, while the top 10 most profitable teams averaged 37.33% and the bottom 10 averaged 49.11%.

these numbers do not include player benefits (health insurance, retirement, etc.) which are probably about 7% in total as this would bring you to the leaguewide 50% agreed upon distribution. this is a guess as the NFL contract is very complicated. the financial numbers are from forbes and the payroll numbers from usa today.



Team revenue (mil) payroll


inc (mil)

payroll / revenue
Dallas Cowboys $420 $90,650,939 $143.3 21.58%
Washington Redskins $353 $105,049,071 $103.7 29.76%
New England Patriots $318 $97,565,413 $66.5 30.68%
Tampa Bay Buccaneers $246 $84,501,322 $56.1 34.35%
Cincinnati Bengals $232 $94,591,308 $49.4 40.77%
Kansas City Chiefs $235 $83,187,156 $47.8 35.40%
Baltimore Ravens $255 $109,200,157 $44.9 42.82%
Indianapolis Colts $248 $101,203,115 $43.2 40.81%
Chicago Bears $254 $120,672,110 $37.3 47.51%
New Orleans Saints $245 $121,552,424 $36.7 49.61%
Houston Texans $272 $122,573,860 $36.5 45.06%
Cleveland Browns $242 $93,932,182 $36.1 38.81%
Philadelphia Eagles $260 $102,490,815 $34.7 39.42%
Atlanta Falcons $231 $95,492,002 $34.5 41.34%
Seattle Seahawks $241 $89,075,820 $34.0 36.96%
St Louis Rams $223 $62,384,821 $29.0 27.98%
Buffalo Bills $228 $111,956,066 $28.2 49.10%
Arizona Cardinals $236 $116,701,866 $28.1 49.45%
Jacksonville Jaguars $220 $103,558,989 $25.9 47.07%
San Diego Chargers $233 $115,264,155 $24.7 49.47%
Tennessee Titans $242 $109,025,090 $23.3 45.05%
Denver Broncos $250 $102,043,735 $22.0 40.82%
San Francisco 49ers $226 $107,746,232 $21.0 47.68%
Minnesota Vikings $221 $99,806,040 $17.9 45.16%
Pittsburgh Steelers $243 $119,604,460 $17.9 49.22%
Carolina Panthers $247 $112,738,038 $15.0 45.64%
Green Bay Packers $242 $114,597,569 $9.8 47.35%
New York Jets $238 $120,168,770 $7.6 50.49%
Oakland Raiders $217 $111,527,250 $2.2 51.40%
New York Giants $241 $137,638,866 $2.1 57.11%
Detroit Lions $210 $95,963,320 -$2.9 45.70%
Miami Dolphins $247 $126,855,921 -$7.7 51.36%



i am for the players getting 50% forever (and they have earned it) but this will continue to hurt the bottom teams that cannot  greatly increase their unshared revenues. this by the way, includes the steelers. well run businesses do not pay 50% of revenue to employees. in the NFL the players total comp (salaries and benefits) is very close to 50% of revenue but they still have to pay coaches, medical and front office people too. even pro sports is starting to realize this and this includes the NBA and MLB too. short-term you can get away with it but long-term it will kill you.

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