XFL distributes “non-negotiable” player contracts


The XFL may not be spending much money on their players, but the latest fledging football league surely has spent a nice chunk of change on its lawyers.

A standard XFL player contract has been prepared and distributed to agents, with clear indications on the document like “confidential” and “do not circulate.” (So much for that.) PFT has obtained a copy of the standard XFL contract and its attachments, and some highlights and key takeaways appear below.

First, the document is, according to an XFL memo accompanying the contract, “non-negotiable.”

Second, the contract specifies a weekly salary of $1,040 per week, with an anticipated gross amount of $27,040. It also promises a $1,685 payment for each game played, and $2,222 for each win.

Third, the players get no royalties for merchandise sold by the XFL, including presumably jerseys and other items bearing their names.

Fourth, the document permits the player to leave for the NFL, but only after the end of his team’s season. The XFL’s championship game will be played on April 26, one day after the NFL draft concludes.

Fifth, the contract includes a broad waiver of rights to pursue legal claims in court, with an argreement to arbitrate disputes and a promise to enter into no class actions.

Those are just a few of the significant terms of the XFL contract, which is skewed against the players in part because there is no real competition given the implosiong of the AAF. Each player will have to decide whether to take it, or whether to leave it.

Ultimately, XFL players will need to decide whether they need the protection that comes from unionizing. One thing is very clear in that regard: If the XFL players choose to form a union, the ensuing labor contract most definitely will not be non-negotiable.

27 responses to “XFL distributes “non-negotiable” player contracts

  1. Sounds like the XFL wants players who will play for the love of football.
    The kind that love it so much they’d play for nothing.
    Or in this case, next to nothing.

  2. Anyone who plays for this league is an idiot. I wouldn’t go sit at a desk all day for $27k, I sure as heck am not putting my body through pro football practices for $27k

  3. employees should always unionize. The system works around money, so the owners, understandably, will value profit over the convenience and well-being of their employees. The employees, understanably, should band together to make sure they speak with a unified voice.

  4. These guys got paid more in college. The over/under on this league is still 1 year despite what anyone says.

  5. I would love for another pro football league to be successful, but this is insanity defined. PLAYERS CAN’T PROFIT OFF OF THEIR OWN MERCHANDISE??? What an arrogant joke!

  6. The way it’s worded, the payout increase per win goes up to $2,222. It’s not a $2,222 per win bonus. $537 per win.

  7. vikingjack73 says:
    November 22, 2019 at 12:20 pm
    This 2nd coming of the XFL won’t last 2 Seasons!
    I’ll be shocked if it lasts one season. This will generate ratings like the 3 on 3 basketball league. But it’ll cost so much more to air. If it makes it through a full season I’ll be shocked.

  8. The league is just launching and their future is unknown. It makes sense to start with such modest financial obligations. I’m sure these numbers will increase the league is successful and generates money enough to support higher pay.

  9. It’s a tough spot: They can’t afford to spend much on players but it won’t take long for people to gripe about the quality of play which won’t be terribly high with guys making peanuts.

  10. With a 10-game schedule, a player on a .500 team would make $46K (presuming they play all 10 games).

    Plenty of people do far less-fun things than sports for less money, $46K is a better salary than most people have waiting for them when they leave college, and the work is only seasonal — they have some 7-8 other months to also earn money.

    It’s not great by professional sports standards, but it’s pretty darn good by regular workforce standards.

  11. Hey everyone:

    Yes, these aren’t great terms for the players. But guess what? Every other NFL-rival league folded in a mountain of debt. These may be the actual salaries that an alternative league can pay.

  12. @ hailtothenamechange says:
    November 22, 2019 at 1:10 pm
    With a 10-game schedule, a player on a .500 team would make $46K (presuming they play all 10 games) . . . they have some 7-8 other months to also earn money.

    I assume your math is as follows project base salary + (5 X game check) + (5 X winning game check). Which would be $27,040 + (5 X $1,685) + (5 X $2,222) or $27,040 + $8,425 + $11,110 = $46,575 for a complete season. A couple of flaws in your assumptions:

    1 – The base salary is calculated on a weekly salary of $1,040, which if you divide the $27,040/$1,040 it equals exactly 26 weeks, or 6 months. Additionally you are assuming that every player plays every game, which with injuries and roster moves and whatnot, that is really unlikely. But even if we assume the $46,,575 total salary is earnible, that equates to an annualized salary of $93,150 – which isn’t a bad annualized earnings given they are playing a game they haven’t been paid for during most their lives. Also that salary divided by a normal 2,080 hours/year equates to an hourly rate of $44.78 per hour . . . I don’t see most of these guys making that type of money anywhere else and they certainly can’t make more than that working at McDonalds as one poster has written.

    Finally, if the players decide to unionize, well that will almost certainly result in the league just up and folding . . . there are consequences to every decision that is made and the reality is that with a start up league that plays off season . . . the best you might be able to pull off is playing for whatever is offered.

  13. What exactly do you people who keep saying “It’s only 6mo work, that’s good pay” expect them to do in the off season? There are not a lot of quality, high paying jobs that are going to let you bail for 6mo to play football. You can’t even sell insurance part time like they used to.

  14. All I know is that I don’t have any interest in watching Landry Jones, Matt McGloin or Josh Johnson led football teams. Maybe Cardale Jones? Eh, nevermind.

  15. I was all set to break out my “He Hate Me” gear. Wee miss you Rod Smart! Like the Alliance of American Football, it won’t survive a season.

  16. This league will survive for awhile, McMahon has spent a lot of money to let it go by the wayside. But I do expect that the pay and these type of contracts will end up forcing the players hand. Expect to see an XFLPA very soon.

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