(NEXSTAR) – When the Los Angeles Rams and the Cincinnati Bengals face off at the 2022 Super Bowl Sunday, only one team will leave with the Lombardi Trophy. But even the losers – and even some players who never play a single second of game time – will leave a big chunk of extra cash.
That’s because of a provision in the NFL’s bargaining agreement with the Players Association. The agreement stipulates players on the winning team earn an extra $150,000 for playing in the Super Bowl, while players on the losing team earn half that amount: $75,000.
That may not be a lot of money for the teams’ stars on multi-million dollar contracts, but just that one check easily tops the median U.S. household income, which was $67,521 in 2020.
Players are set to receive their Super Bowl bonus pay within 15 day of the big game, according to the agreement.
Rams and Bengals players don’t even have to play in Sunday’s game to get the extra check, but there are exceptions to who gets the full amount. If you’ve been on the team’s roster for less than three games prior to the Super Bowl, you’re only entitled to half the full amount. Players who get injured during the regular season, and are therefore dropped from the team’s active and inactive lists, could also get a quarter or half of the full bonus (depending on how many games they played, how many years they’ve been in the league, the status of their contract, and other factors).
The bonus associated with playing in the Super Bowl grows each year, according to the agreement. Last year the winners’ bonus was $130,000. Next year, it’s set to rise to $157,000. By the 2030-31 football season (the last seasons covered in the most recent bargaining agreement), the Super Bowl winners will each take home an extra $228,000.
NFL players also get paid extra for playing in other playoff games or the Pro Bowl, but each of those extra payments is smaller than the Super Bowl bonus.
The 2022 Super Bowl kicks off at 3:30 PT in Inglewood, California.