NFL Careers Are the Worst Bets You Could Ever Make in Your Life

Gene ZarnickCorrespondent IMarch 9, 2011

You just graduated college.  Lucky for you no debt exists because you were able to earn a scholarship in high school.  A stipulation of the scholarship was that you'd have to give up the majority of your free time and spend at least 30 hours a week studying if you wanted any chance of being successful at your career.

Around the country there are 2,550 seniors that have a received a scholarship for the same major you have.  Of those 2,550 seniors like yourself, only 10 percent are offered a job upon graduation.

Would you accept the scholarship offer and take that risk?

Before you answer the question then you should probably hear the rewards of this career path first.

If you're the top graduate within your major you would be guaranteed $50 million with the chance for $28 million more depending how you do during the first few years at the company.  Even if you're the 255th best person offered a job, your base salary would be $325,000.  Still a remarkable salary right out of college.

I forgot a few more risks though.  

There are only 32 companies that are offering positions.  Each company has 58 employees and even if you are one of the select 255 offered a contract, only about 200 of you will actually obtain a job with one of these companies.  

Don't be discouraged. 

If you're one of the Top 100 then you're more than likely guaranteed to be one of the 58 employees, but if you're part of the latter 155, probably only 100 of you will actually get the job.

Another negative.  

The average career length is only 3.3 years.  Also, it's very demanding on your body.  There are very good chances of you facing some long-term injuries and you may experience a concussion on the job once or twice.  All the companies have professional medical staffs though, so they'll take good care of you.

Enough with the pessimism.  

If you're one of the lucky ones that make it to year four then there can be some amazing benefits.  Your base salary would be around $750,000 and if you're one of the top earners in the company then you could be making tens of millions of dollars per year.  Not only that, but you could also earn extra money outside of the company doing commercials for the business or being a consultant for another business to help try to sell their stuff.  The possibilities are limitless.

There has to be some more positives.  Let me think...

Oh yeah.  People might recognize you.  Fame is a good thing, right? You might have people asking you for autographs, which is kind of cool.

I did  forget to mention that this occupation is in the U.S. only.  If it doesn't work out then I'm not sure what you're going to do.  Actually there are few companies in Canada that offer a knockoff version of the products we make.

Also, I wouldn't get too settled wherever you land.  Chances are you won't stay with the same company year in and year out.  

However, if you do land with an exceptional company one year, then you could get a chance to win the company of the year award where you get this big, expensive, fancy ring that everyone will be jealous of.  

This ring really does mean a lot in and outside of our business.  If you get a ring you're considered a success forever.  If you fail to get one then most people will think you didn't live up to your potential.

So with all this information in front of you would you take that scholarship out of high school?