This kid will finally be able to put to test the argument that one of our writers wrote extensively about called Debunking the Myth of ‘If Our Best Athletes Played Soccer, We (They) Would Dominate”. There is not a lot of money in American soccer right now. That is not to say that you cannot earn a great living as an American soccer player. However, the odds are not in an athlete’s favor. Currently NFL Practice Squad players make $6,300 per week (which is around $100,000 for 17 weeks of a season). There are players on MLS rosters who are making the league minimum salary of $35,125 which means being “on the bench” in the NFL (practice squad players don’t even travel with the team) is more lucrative then being on the bench in MLS. Of course there is opportunity for larger wages if you are a DP in MLS or play in Europe but that is hard to do.
Therefore, if a young athlete were to compare the two sports, he would have better odds at making a good living trying to make it to the NFL. Which makes this move perplexing because from the sound of his football talent he has the potential to make an NFL practice squad at the very least. It would be interesting to note what made him choose soccer over football. Was it the increased popularity of the sport over the years? Or was it the many lifetime injury concerns that come with being a professional football player? We may never know. It would be great news for US soccer if this started to happen with much more frequency because not only would it increase the US soccer talent pool but it would finally be able to help us answer the argument that “If our best athletes played soccer then we would be dominant.” Hopefully this is just the beginning of a monumental shift in US sports. Only time will tell.