Do Professional Athletes Deserve a High Salary?

With the MLB draft taking place, the debate over the high salaries for professional athletes has sparked up again. While there are some who believe that the amount paid is fair in alliance with their, most would say that any athlete being able to make a 9 figure salary is ludicrous. Here’s a look into an ongoing hot debate surrounding the sports world. 

Why They Should:

  1. Athletes put their own health and bodies on the line for the sake of the game. Physical injuries can make athletes handicapped or disabled for the rest of their lives, and NFL players who sustain multiple head injuries can suffer from progressive degenerative disease, which can cause dementia. Athletes also spend most of their time away from family as they train and are on the road for games. 
  2. To put it in perspective, professional athletes get paid to do what anyone else would do: work and get paid for their skills. The only difference is that an athletes work is on a major scale and in a celebrity spotlight, so they get paid much more. 
  3. In actuality, athletes aren’t making everything they get offered during drafts. With higher salaries comes more taxes. Including the federal, state, city, and pension taxes everyone pays, players get deducted even more, with agent fees and a $10,000 union due. All of these can cut a player’s salary in half; this makes the huge eight-figure digit boasted for the player during the draft somewhat inaccurate, and it can be deceiving to any loathing fans out there. 

Why They Shouldn’t: 

  1. The true meaning of sports is not about the money a player makes. Sometimes the love for the game and the love for a high salary get mixed up for an athlete. For instance, Albert Haynesworth signed a $100 million contract with the Washington Commanders (or the Washington Redskins when he played), but that season was one of his worst; it was like he was less interested in the game and more about the money. 
  2. Athletes get paid no matter what. When a player signs a contract with a team, they are guaranteed a certain amount of their salary upfront. In the instance of 2007 football star Jamarcus Russel, he basically got paid $31 million dollars for nothing since that season was a bust. 
  3. What do you think is a more important job: being in pro sports, or serving in the U.S. Army? Well, according to the numbers, hitting home runs and making threes are much more important than protecting our country. The average salary of an NBA player can be upwards of $8.32 million yearly, while a Corporal in the United States Army is only paid $30,000 annually. Firefighters can make up to $52,000, and teachers are only paid $33,000. That is a major discrepancy. 

The debate over whether or not the salaries of professional athletes is ridiculous is based on how you look at it. From the ground level, athletes do put a lot of time and effort into their job, and like anyone else, they deserve to be paid for it. But looking at the bigger picture, the massive difference between the salaries of players and the salaries of men and women on the front lines is overbearing. Is it really alright that our soldiers are given so much less than pro players?

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