The NFL is the most lucrative pro sports league in the world, but its players are dead last among the four major American professional sports in average salary.
On average, NBA players make $US5.15 million, MLB players make $US3.2 million, NHL players make $US2.4 million, and NFL players make $US1.9 million per year, according to Forbes.
But that doesn’t even tell the full story.
Andrew Powell-Morse and Brett Cohen at BestTicketsBlog put together two charts that reveal how few NFL players are making real money.
In short, the average NFL salary doesn’t spike until most players are out of the league.
70% of NFL players are between the ages of 22 and 27. Players in that group earn less than the NFL average overall.
Compare that chart to this age distribution chart for players. They are mirror images of another:
The number of players at each age starts declining once you get to age 26 — the same point at which the average salary starts in incline.
Most NFL players don’t make it to the age range (28 to 35) when they can start making serious money ($4 million a year and up on average).
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