Did you rate a team in the preseason? The wait is over: it’s New England and Philadelphia. The dream-above-all-dreams in Minneapolis became a nightmare yesterday, when the Vikings left the Eagles’ home field in defeat. The Pro Bowl in Orlando will be next week’s fix for the pigskin addicts who are gearing-up for Super Bowl LII.
It will be all-Super Bowl, all the time for the ESPN cult until February 4th. We don’t call it “Super Bowl” for nothing: the World Cup gets a bigger international audience, but don’t tell that to red blooded Americans. Time stands still on the last NFL day of the (playing) year. Every Pop Warner kid, all of the high school wannabe’s, the college athletes: they all fall asleep with visions of heaven someday… as long as “heaven” involves a game watched by hundreds of millions, and a ring that proves that they made it to the top of their competitive heap.
A few years ago, there was a team watching the NFL playoffs with stopwatches instead of nachos, commissioned by the Wall Street Journal to dissect the game clocks. The question: on average, where did the time go? How was the time broadcasting the contest on the field really spent?
Here are their findings:
|Average Broadcast Length:||185 minutes|
|Average Time in Commercials:||60 minutes|
|Huddles or Stand Around Time:||75 minutes|
|Replays for the TV Audience:||17 minutes|
|Cut-aways to refs or coaches-in-headsets||13 minutes|
|Actual Playing Time:||11 minutes|
At what rate do those guys in helmets get paid for their work? The average salary in the NFL last season was $ 2.1 million (not including signing or post-season bonuses). If a team goes to the Super Bowl, they play 24 games in the season. Do the math:
24 games x 11 minutes per game = 264 minutes of playing time
$ 2.1 million average annual pay / 264 minutes = $ 7,954/minute of playing time
The rate formula’s assumption: the player would be on the field for every play of the game, which never happens. The pay meter is running – for every player on the field, on the bench – if the team is playing.
That’s good work, if you can get it! Listen, those pros work for decades to get a shot at those minutes, and their intense preparation – off season, preseason, and during the season – is not factored into that equation. But when you want to boil it down to the nubs, it is interesting that the time that really matters is when the ball is in play. All of the rest points to those moments when the outcome is determined, and win-or-lose hangs in the balance.
Here’s the point: there are some moments in life that mean more than others. Most of life’s minutes are spent; some are invested. Most hours are wasted; some are spent getting ready for something that never happens, and a few really prepare for the moments when win/lose, success/failure are on the line.
How do you score in the Savior’s Super Bowl? Eternity’s touchdowns are marked by people added to a roster called “The Lamb’s Book of Life.” Populate Heaven, and the team scores. What’s your rate? Participate in the play – whether you’re carrying the ball or blocking on the line – and you did your part.
Are you on the field in the Great Commission Stadium? Or, watching from the stands?