Report: NFL eliminating pay for Pro Bowl players this season to save $5 million

Jan 26, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; AFC quarterback Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens (8) poses for a picture with teammates after being introduced before a game against the NFC in the 2020 NFL Pro Bowl at Camping World Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

NFL players who are named to the Pro Bowl after the 2020 season will not be paid for playing in the exhibition game, according to Mike Garafolo of NFL Network.

Garafolo shared Saturday morning that the NFLPA agreed to eliminate Pro Bowl pay this season as a concession to the NFL during their CBA amendment negotiations.

As noted by the NFL insider, “Players on the winning team were slated to make $74,000, with players on the losing side getting $37,000. That’s almost $5 million total set aside.”

It’s hard to imagine that players will even be interested in playing in the Pro Bowl without being paid to do so.

In the grand scheme of things, this seems like a drop of water in a vast ocean. Even when you consider that the NFL is bracing for significant revenue losses in 2020 due to COVID-19. After all, the NFL is a multi-billion-dollar industry.

NFL season and training camps will start on time

The good news is that, barring COVID-19-related developments, training camps will start on time (July 28) and the NFL season will, too.

After long and complicated negotiations between the NFL owners and the NFLPA, the two sides agreed on the CBA amendments for what will be an unprecedented 2020 season. The big issues they had to navigate were centered around significant health and safety matters, along with some tough financial decisions heading into camp.

Among the major changes were an agreement that the financial losses in 2020 will be spread out over four years, with the salary cap dropping to no lower than $175 million per team in 2021. Additionally, roster sizes in camp this summer will drop from 90 players per team to 80 unless teams do a split camp to accommodate a full roster.

As noted by Minnesota Vikings star Adam Thielen, this summer will be brutal for undrafted free agents like he was in 2013.