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Providing Equal Opportunities in the NFL

The NFL has come a long way in providing equal opportunities for all players. I think it is important to give attention to areas where they have both succeed and failed in this task. This will give a guide of what is working and what is not working, and will pave the way for a better future.

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Equal pay

The salary of NFL players is still one of the areas of major controversy. Even within the NFL, there is a huge range of difference between contracts for the highest paid players and ones at the base rate.

It is easy to see why better players are paid more. If a higher offer comes along, it can be tempting for a brilliant player to leave their club. They are therefore enticed to stay with huge contracts. Regardless of whether this is fair, the simple fact is that they should be more equal.

Having contracts that differ in millions of dollars between players can create lower confidence in other players. It can stop them from performing their best and create conflict within the club. It can also create competition among players, which something that is not desirable. Salaries should be fair, not outrageous.

Sexuality

The first openly gay male to be drafted in NFL was Michael Sam in 2014. There was massive controversy surrounding this showing our intolerance towards people that come from different backgrounds than our own.

Since then there has only been one player to play in Division I. There is a culture in American football to hide ones sexuality so that it does not hurt ones career. However, if we are going to work towards having completely open and equal opportunities for all players, this needs to change.

Race

We have come a long way in having racial equality in football. From a time when all players were white males to now, there has been a huge shift in our thinking. However, I would like to see more representation for different racial backgrounds. The NFL lacks Asian players which means they are not equally represented in the NFL. Other nationalities, such as those from middle eastern countries, should also be given the change to be equally represented.

Gender

Although this is something we will not be seeing change anytime soon, I think it is important to speak about it now than never. Women sports are gaining momentum more so now than ever before. This has led to the recognition that they are not at all supported in professional sports equal to men. The NFL could be the first to respond to this.

By offering a seperate division for women players, women would have the right to the same equal opportunities that men have. Their skills and talents would be equally recognized and rewarded, and it would lead to a shift in the way we see sportswoman.

Many of these changes will not happen overnight, but it is important to speak about them now. The more we ask for equal rights and discuss their necessity, the closer we will move towards them.

Are The Salaries Of NFL Players Fair?

Salaries of NFL players have been something I have heard a lot of debate on recently. There is much talk about whether the amount paid to these players is fair and justifiable. Many players are paid a base salary in the millions, not including bonuses and freebies that are included as perks of the job. But do these players deserve this? It is definitely debatable, however, I think the amount players are paid is fair. Although there is a range of salaries based on skill, ability, age and the team they play for, overall most players are paid a fair salary for the game they play.

One example of a highly paid player is Andrew Luck. Andrew Luck was paid a base salary of $16.2 million with a contract that is around $140 million. However, Andrew Luck is one of the best paid players in the game and as such has one of the highest paid salaries. Most players are not paid in this range and are actually paid around $1 million to $5 million. This is still a lot of money and far beyond average salaries.

Although these figures are high, we need to consider why the players get paid this amount. Firstly they are putting their bodies under enormous stress. This is not only in the moment they play, but something to consider for the future. Many players are injured, sometimes every game, and their injuries result in long term damage that is often irreparable. They put their bodies under incredible physical stress that many of us simply would not understand.

NFL players are also putting their lives and faces on display to the world. They are becoming public figures and celebrities in their own right. This affects their whole life and therefore they need to be continuously cautious of their representation in the media and the perception of the public. Any failure to maintain a an immaculate public image can, and has resulted in the termination of their contract.

Another thing to consider that that their careers are also short. Players are only able to play when they are in top physical shape. It is not something that can follow you until your retirement. Many players leave the game unable to do other jobs. Therefore this is their main income source and chance for future savings. Although the issue is still debatable, it is worth considering these facts when you make your judgement.

My Top 5 Colts Players

Andrew Luck

Andrew Luck is the first player in my list. He is one of the few quarterback’s that I really think is a great player, and he has amazing skill on the field. I do not believe a list of the top 5 Colts players could be complete without him, and if I had my own team, I would draft him immediately. Andrew Luck has received many awards based on his performance on the field which are well deserved for a player with this level of skill. Although, this has not come easy for Andrew Luck. With any accomplishment, there is inevitably some struggle. Andrew Luck has suffered various injuries especially in 2015. However, despite his proneness to injury, Andrew Luck has been able to lead the Colts through to two division titles. He is a great player and easily at the top of my list of my top 5 Colts players.

Robert Mathis

Robert Mathis is another great player, and although he is second on my list, his playing skills are first grade! Robert Mathis is another Colts player whose skill was recognized in college. For some people, sports skills are natural and they are recognized early on. Coupled with his academic experience, he is a top person. He plays as an outback linebacker and does a fantastic job of it. And not to mention, this guy is huge! Players probably fear him (I know I would) and I’m sure he leaves turbulence as he walks down the street! Robert Mathis has been playing for a long time now, having been drafted in 2003. I’m sure we will see many great seasons to come, and I especially look forward to his performance in 2017.

Marvin Harrison

Marvin Harrison is the third top player in my list, and was drafted in 1996. This may seem like a long time ago, and that is probably because it is. It is over 20 years ago that Marvin Harrison was drafted, and although he is a former player of the Colts, I wish he would return (although I’m sure his skill is not what it once was). Marvin Harrison’s great skills were recognized in his ability to make the prestigious hall of fame. Marvin Harrison is smaller than a lot of players, but this just goes to show it’s not all about size. He has been able to play a fantastic game even with his smaller frame. Marvin Harrison has had a few injuries during his time, including a knee that gave him a lot of trouble. He played as a wide receiver during his career. I hope he is doing well, but I am sure there will never be a player like him.

Gary Brackett

Gary Brackett is another former player, but in my opinion, he is one of the greatest former players and he will always be remembered for his own individual abilities and skill. He played as a line backer in his time and did a fantastic job at it. Gary Bracket proved his great abilities in his first year of playing in 2005, and ever since then he continued to impress on the field. I have many fond memories of watching him play. He proved himself throughout his career with over 700 tackles in his career. I loved to watch him play and he will be missed from the game.

Pat McAfee

Pat McAfee was drafted in 2009. This makes him one of the newer players on the team, although it has been over 7 years now that he has been playing. Pat McAfee has done it all throughout his own life. He started by playing soccer, and now plays as a placekicker for the Colts. I guess this shows his love for sport. For some people, it just runs in their blood. Pat McAfee cut his hair off in 2011 for children, and this was a great way to raise funds and awareness in the community for the importance of struggles of children and to assist in raising money for them. He has also suffered his fair share of person struggles in his own life. This happens to be a trend with a lot of players, especially when they end their careers and the fame stops. Perhaps the fame starts to make them question other areas of their life that may be lacking. I guess with the fame awarded to them there may be many people that like them, but very few people that understand them. I know people in the general public wouldn’t recognize this. They would only see the positive aspects of fame, but it is hard for us to recognize it when we do not experience it first hand. I know this post was not meant to be about the struggles of celebrities and public figures, but it has become that. Perhaps I will post another article about this issue in the future! Regardless of that, I believe Pat McAfee is a fantastic player and should be appreciated for this.