How much do NFL cheerleaders make?

Are you wondering how much NFL cheerleaders make because you’re planning to join the team? Becoming an NFL cheerleader may be even easier if you enjoy watching American football. 

Cheerleading involves showing your team spirit and support for your favorite players. But before venturing into it, it’s best to know: how much do NFL cheerleaders make?

NFL Cheerleaders Salary (Quick Answer)

You can make $50 to $75 per game, and some NFL cheerleaders make as much as $150 per game. This works out to an annual salary of approximately $7,500 to $11,000, or $22,500 if you earn $150 per game. 

Some teams will give you bonuses and other incentives in addition to game-day pay. But keep in mind that NFL cheerleading is not a full-time profession. So don’t rely on the NFL paycheck as the only source of income!

You can have other jobs or be a full-time student and become an NFL cheerleader. You, however, need to show up for things like games, practices, appearances, training camps, photo shoots, and NFL charity events

NFL cheerleaders’ salaries from different states

CityCheerleader’s average hourly payNFL football team(s)
San Francisco $49.4449ers
Las Vegas$30.28Las Vegas Raiders
Seattle$35.19Seattle Seahawks
Washington$43.74Washington Commanders
Los Angeles$33.68Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers
Dallas$36.87Dallas Cowboys
Chicago$36.51Chicago Bears
Phoenix$31.86Arizona Cardinals
New york$34.32New York Giants and New York Jets

What determines the amount you earn as an NFL cheerleader?

The amount you can make as an NFL cheerleader will depend on several factors. 

Level of experience

For one, the level of experience you have will affect your salary. 

If you’re new to NFL cheerleading, you can expect to make around $50–$60 per game. However, if you’ve been doing this for a while and are a seasoned pro, you can expect to make upwards of $100 per game.

Your workplace and team 

Moreover, where you live and work and which team you decide to cheer for affect the amount you’ll take home. Teams in bigger cities like New York or Los Angeles usually pay their cheerleaders more than teams in smaller cities like Green Bay or San Diego.

Type of contract

Finally, your contract will also affect your salary. Some teams may offer health insurance and other benefits, while others may not. So before you sign on with any team, be sure to read over your contract carefully. You’ll get to know your responsibilities and how much you’ll receive from them.

How to maximize your NFL cheerleading salary

You can maximize your pay by signing up for multiple games, appearing at events, and doing promotional work.

NFL cheerleaders can also earn bonus money from playoff games. And you can make even more money by performing at the Super Bowl

However, you should know that you lose money any time you miss a game. This also happens to professional cheerleaders. Even when they miss games for injury or other reasons, supporting cheerleaders are called in to fill in for them.

What exactly do NFL cheerleaders do?

We all know that being an NFL cheerleader is a great job. Not only do you get to be part of one of the most popular sports in America, but you also get to enjoy the fame and glory that comes with it. 

But what are some of the responsibilities of being an NFL cheerleader? Besides cheering their NFL teams, the cheerleader’s other paid duties include,

  • Promoting their NFL’s team franchise brands on social media platforms.
  • Practicing for their cheering stunts and dance routines(choreographing).
  • Volunteering at charity events and sometimes at hospitals, fundraisers, and schools.
  • Selling NFL game tickets.
  • Providing support to their NFL team in meetings and special events.
  • Lastly, NFL cheerleaders are required to maintain a given level of physical fitness.

Cheerleaders’ salaries compared to those of other NFL professionals.

First and foremost, NFL cheerleaders may be some of the most visible team members. Still, they’re not often seen as highly compensated. The fact of the matter is that NFL cheerleaders earn significantly less than their male counterparts, and the pay disparity can be quite substantial.

Here’s an estimate of the annual salary comparison of cheerleaders to their NFL counterparts:

  • Cheerleaders: $22, 500
  • Water boys: $53,000
  • Mascots: $50,000
  • Quarterbacks: $7 million
  • Wide receivers: $2.8 million
  • Head coaches: $6.7 million
  • Referees: $205,000

Cheerleaders also generally receive no health insurance or retirement benefits from their employers. This means when you get injured while performing or at a practice session, you’ll be responsible for all medical costs associated with it. 

Ultimately, NFL cheerleaders are paid far less than their male counterparts, but they perform one of the most visible duties within a team’s organization. 

Despite these low wages and lack of benefits, many cheerleaders still choose to participate in this profession because of its high visibility and opportunity for public performance. 

And with the recent rise in popularity of professional cheerleading squads, they are increasingly viewed as professional athletes who deserve respect and fair compensation for their work

The bright side is that more people are aware of this problem. 

Given the effort required to become a professional cheerleader, more teams will begin offering these women better wages and benefits, thereby acknowledging their worth.

What are the requirements for an NFL cheerleader?

Some of the requirements may vary from team to team, but the least common for any NFL cheerleaders include

  • At least a high school diploma or GED
  • Passing an NFL team audition
  • Attending an NFL team training program which can run for weeks or months. 

During the training, you’ll learn your role as a cheerleader, dance, and gymnastics. You’ll also attend tumbling classes and learn the history of the team and the values of the team’s franchise.

Some skills you need to run a successful NFL cheerleader career.

You must learn consistency to succeed as an NFL cheerleader. You must work year-round, maintaining your skills to compete in the sport successfully. 

This calls for hard work all year long, not just during football season. Some of the skills you need to maintain to achieve a successful NFL cheerleader career are

  • Excellent and practical communication skills, especially with a large audience.
  • Teamwork between other cheerleaders
  • Leadership skills
  • Motivational skills to motivate your team
  • Organizational skills
  • Time management to keep track of practice times, schedules, uniforms, and other equipment.


How much do NFL cheerleaders make? You can make between $75 and $150 per game as a cheerleader, in addition to personal appearances and other opportunities. At times, pay will vary from team to team. 

You can always hope for a fat paycheck if you are lucky enough to get on a team with significant market size or massive success. However, note that cheerleading is often considered a part-time job. 

You can do it even as a student or when you still have another professional career.

Recent Posts