UFL slashes transfer fee to $25,000


With no NFL team biting on the $150,000 transfer fee charged by the UFL to sign UFL players directly to active rosters, the UFL has dramatically dropped its price.

Robert Karpeles of FanHouse.com reports that the UFL has made the $125,000 reduction, citing an unnamed source and then quoting Commissioner Michael Huyghue.

“It is surprising to me that 15 NFL clubs would bring players in for tryouts with full knowledge that a transfer fee was required to sign them and then refuse to pay the fee,” Huyghue said.

“Notwithstanding, we recognize the value in sending players to the NFL and have accordingly reduced the fee to $25,000 which can be paid by the club or directly by the player.”

We’re told that the move was made in response to repeated pleas by UFL players, who believed it was fair for half of their standard salary of $50,000 to be returned to purchase their freedom.

It remains to be seen whether NFL teams or UFL players will pay the money.

19 responses to “UFL slashes transfer fee to $25,000

  1. Considering the league minimums for NFL players, why wouldn’t the UFL players make that request. The fact that the league put the price so high and then slashed it by over 80% shows they have no idea what they are doing or what they want to do.

  2. 25K is a reasonable fee. nfl clubs can sign the player for league min which is about 200K for whole year i think. so this is about 1/3 of the year so about 70K + 25K = 95K for the last 5 games. reasonable.

    Hey – Florio – why didn’t you give us these numbers… i am not sure of them.

  3. Well,,,,,,,,,,,, if these guys don’t have any money left over,,,,, from their multimillion dollar contracts,,,,, maybe the owners will let them park cars before the game or sell peanuts at halftime…..

  4. “It is surprising to me that 15 NFL clubs would bring players in for tryouts with full knowledge that a transfer fee was required to sign them and then refuse to pay the fee,” Huyghue said.

    This guy is a first class ass-clown. That’s called a power play, you clueless idiot. Show the players that you are interested, then refuse to pay the league, thereby pitting the players against their own employers.

    It’s the kind of move that separates the men from the boys in the business world and another reason why the NFL is the king of pro sports leagues in America.

    This buffoon better figure out quick that his league has one shot at survival and that is to work as closely with the NFL as the NFL will allow.

  5. “It is surprising to me that 15 NFL clubs would bring players in for tryouts with full knowledge that a transfer fee was required to sign them and then refuse to pay the fee,” Huyghue said.”

    With people like Huyghue in charge, this league ain’t long for this world, for sure.

    Those 15 teams have all proven to be smarter than this idiot ……. why wouldn’t a team want to bring a player in, kick the tires, and see if he was worth the $125K before they just shell out the money to this half-a$$ league? Apparently none of them were or they would’ve paid up, which means the talent in this league isn’t all that great.

  6. Well,,,,,,,,,,,, if guys like Daunte Culpepper and Jeff Garcia want another shot in the bigs,,,,,, and they don’t have the $25,000 front money,,,,,,,

  7. I’m not an expert by any stretch, and I’m probably completely wrong in how I’m interpreting this, but here’s what I found when I researched NFL minimum salaries…

    Here are the League Minimum Salaries (based on credited years of service):

    0 years = $325,000
    1 year = $400,000
    2 years = $475,000
    3 years = $550,000
    4-6 years = $635,000
    7-9 years = $760,000
    10+ years = $860,000

    Divide this by 16 games, and here are the amounts:

    0 = $20,312 per game
    1 = $25,000 per game
    2 = $29,687 per game
    3 = $34,375 per game
    4-6 = $39,687 per game
    7-9 = $47,500 per game
    10+ = $53,750 per game

    Players with less than a full year of service can be on a practice squad, so we’re really talking about the people who are making $25,000 per game or more. I doubt there are all that many that fall into the 7-0 or 10+ ranges that teams would be seriously interested in (with the possible exceptions of Garcia, Culpepper, etc.), so this whole mess really applies to people who are making $39,687 per game or less.

    With only four games left in the season, most UFL players would only be paid a max of $158,750 for the remainder of the season. Add the original $150,000 to that, and an NFL team would have to pony up double what they’d normally pay to rent a player for four games.

    Cutting the fee to $25,000 is a good move, but realistically that’s still 50-100% of a game check for these players. At this point in the season, any sort of transfer fee doesn’t make much fiscal sense.

  8. It is surprising to me Huyghue is that stupid. What makes him think the clubs will pay any amount?

    Oh, you don’t want to pay $125,000? Well, we will charge $25,000. What? That’s too high. Okay, we will charge $1,000. What? Still too high. Okay, okay. The fee has been revised to $500 and a bucket of KFC chicken. What? Still high? Okay, okay, okay. Yeah, see, we weren’t serious. What we meant was the fee is now $18.99, plus a box of rubber bands and a team hat. What? No good, huh. Okay, okay. Here is the final deal. You take our players and in return we get a mention in ProFootballTalk.com about how pathetic we are. Deal? Yes?! Good! Deal!

  9. For those who wonder whether the drop in fees will make a difference, it was rumored the Bengals passed on UFL kicker Nick Novak despite a stellar tryout because of the $150k fee. For teams out of the playoff picture paying an add’l $125k might have been a real deterrent.

    People bring up Garcia and Culpepper as potential NFL callbacks but neither one lit it up in the UFL. Both had more picks than TDs and the lowest passer ratings in the league. I would say that kickers, cornerbacks and O-linemen stand a much better shot at getting a look than the skill position players.

  10. ““It is surprising to me that 15 NFL clubs would bring players in for tryouts with full knowledge that a transfer fee was required to sign them and then refuse to pay the fee,” Huyghue said.”

    I dont get how that could be suprising to Huyghue. I think it makes perfect sense. Most if not all of the NFL teams calling up UFL players for tryouts are just looking for someone to replace an injured player or just to add depth to the bottom rung of the team. Those players could easily be gone after a few weeks. So the NFL did its due dilegences by not just bring these guys in to see if they were good enough to make the team but to also see if they were worth the $150,000 transfer fee. If 1 of the UFL players proved to be more then just a roster filler and had potential to be a real contributer to the team they would have paid the $150,000. But obviously none of them did.

    So since the NFL teams had already brought these guys in for tryouts and were probably interested in signing some of them if there was no fee the next logical thing to do is to refuse to pay it. It tells the players that they would have signed them but wont bc the UFL is trying to squeeze them for money. Doing so puts pressure on the UFL. Which obviously worked. They put enough pressure on them through the players that it forced them to fold and cut there transfer fee by more then 80%.

    It was a win win for the NFL. Either they would find a player that was good enough to pay the $150,000 transfer fee for or they would have the opportunity to pressure the UFL to lowering or completly abolishing there transfer fee all together.

    If Huyghue cant understand that then thats probably the reason why hes stuck working for the UFL and not the NFL.

  11. And why would any team bother to pay 25K when a loop hole has been established to sign with the AFL then the terminate the new contract?
    Huyghue and the UFL need the NFL more than it needs them. He should be working out a deal that lets the UFL work as a reliable feeder league and a destination for guys who want to play pro ball but don’t want to or can’t go to college and other fringe developmental players. That model has kept minor league baseball and hockey in business for a hundred years. There is no shame in playing in small stadiums in football loving cities like Omaha, Birmingham, etc. and possibly creating some of the stars of the future.

  12. UFL seemed like a half-decent idea when it tried to be the new NFL Europe…

    Not anymore, seeing how stupid the person running the league is.

  13. @realitypolice
    You nailed it,

    If this clown is telling the other investors in the UFL that he really believed the NFL would pay the 125 large, his next job with the UFL should be assistant ball boy.

    Now that he dropped it to 25k he might as well drop it to zero. Now that the NFL see a chink in the armor they will go for the throat.

    Michael Huyghue should be damn glad that the NFL did not say “Not only are we not going to pay $125 large, YOU are going to pay us to take your players”.

    Actually, if I was the NFL that is what I would do.
    I would tell Huyghue, if you want to keep telling NFL quality players that they can possibly get a shot back in the NFL, you will pay us 25K for each player we want or we (the nfl) will put out a release that we will NEVER take a player that has played in the UFL.

    Maybe the NFL should send Huyghue the Wikipedia link to the USFL. That pretty well describes what happens when someone tries to strong arm the NFL.

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