A Rookie Wage Scale Would Hurt Agents

Fourth & Goal is a national non-profit organization made up of former NFL players, that operates to do the following:

  • Gain representation for retired players;
  • Advocate for improved pension and disability benefits for retired players; and
  • Raise funds to provide immediate assistance for retired players in need.

The organization has also been advocating for a Rookie Wage Scale.  Such a scale would undoubtedly affect Contract Advisor compensation.

Written in May 2010, Jeff Nixon’s article, NFL Player Agents can’t touch player “benefit” money, is still a relevant read.

The article starts off with a statement made by CAA’s Ben Dogra who said to Yahoo!’s Jason Cole, “You still have a certain amount of money that’s going to be spent on players regardless of where it goes, right? We’re still talking about the same percentage of money that goes to the agents. It just comes from a different place.”  The claim was in reference to the implementation of a rookie wage scale.  As Nixon points out, Dogra may not realize that he and his company actually stand to make less money under such a system.

Nixon alleges that the re-allocated money could be classified as a “benefit”.  Under the NFLPA Regulations Governing Contract Advisors, “compensation” does not include any collectively bargained benefits.  And if there is a stipulated amount of money given to veterans as a benefit based on less money paid to rookies, then Dogra and other Contract Advisors may not be able to touch it.

Nixon goes on to state that Contract Advisors may be violating the NFLPA Regulations by taking a percentage of a player’s performance-based pay from the Player Performance Pool (PPP), as it is also classified as “benefit money”.

Agents should understand all of the potential arguments and effects of a Rookie Wage Scale before publicly advocating or negating its adoption.  Fourth & Goal is one organization that is aiming to provide more information about the scale’s possible effects.

This article originally appeared on the Sports Agent Blog


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