Whether it’s the NFL, MLB, NBA or another league, the action doesn’t end after a team wins their respective championship. In fact, many would agree that the most exciting time is the off-season. Players are relocated, while some teams are even remodeled. Particular fans receive new feelings of hope for their team, or are reassured of what direction their favorite franchise is heading.
However, now more than ever, millions of dollars are thrown around. In some cases, that turns out to be hundreds of millions of dollars. This then prompts many to assume that athletes are extremely overpaid. That has to be true, right?
Well, by comparison, yes. There is no way that an athlete deserves to be paid more than doctors, firefighters, teachers and other heroes that contribute to the world. It seems impossible to make an argument that athletes deserve a higher pay just for playing a game.
However, let’s look at some facts that justify why players are paid the way they are, and why it may even be reasonable to claim that players are underpaid when you consider the money that is available in each league.
According to Forbes heading in 2017, Major League baseball was approaching $10 billion in yearly revenue. The current major league payroll for all 30 teams approaches to roughly $3.5 billion. Therefore, there is no doubt that a lot of money is being thrown around, so it’s only natural for players to seek a bigger piece of the pie, as the league grows larger.
The NFL has an even higher amount of revenue estimated around $13 billion with their total player payroll. The league has a cap at 4.96 billion across all 32 teams. In retrospect, the NBA brings a similar percentage to a lesser degree, with their revenue estimated around $6 billion with a rough $100 million cap for each franchise.
The pattern is pretty clear. The players are aiding the leagues bring in more than they are receiving, and some are even challenging that the caps are too low or shouldn’t even exist. The sports industry is inflated with money and has been so successful that players could make an argument that they are severely underpaid.
It does remain true that it’s a tough pill to swallow that these athletes make so much more than the heroes we encounter in society everyday, but for now, this is a valid argument. This may call for us to try and be more appreciative of those that work to keep us educated, healthy and safe.
So, in hindsight, the issue isn’t that players are overpaid. The issue is that our heroes are the ones that are truly underpaid.
Salaries and budget information accumulated from sportstrac.com and Forbes.com
Photo Credit to Forbes.com