Memo To Roger Goodell: We Did The Math. You Don’t Need The NFL To Pay For Your Private Jet Travel

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell apparently wants lifetime private jet travel as part of his new employment contract. Here’s why he is making a mistake.

By Doug Gollan, November 13, 2017

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell apparently wants lifetime private jet travel as part of his new employment contract. Here’s why he is making a mistake


Roger Goodell’s current deal as the leader of the National Football League estimated to pay the former intern (yes, that’s how he started with the NFL) $30 million per year is apparently not good enough. ESPN, USA Today and Business Insider are all reporting not only does Goodell want more money, including a raise of nearly $20 million per year, he also wants to have “lifetime use of a private jet.” Goodell turns 59 on Feb. 19. 


Let’s assume Goodell serves as commissioner of the league until he turns 65, so six more years. That would mean he might need post-employment access for another 30 years to private jets, so it’s really hard to know what private jet travel be like in 2055. By that time, true VIPs might be transporting themselves in molecules instead of Gulfstreams and Challengers. At the same time, we understand when you are the only person in the room that doesn’t own your own private jet, or several of them, let alone two Boeing 767s, flying commercially must make one feel like they are a mere staff vice president.


Unfortunately, asking for that lifetime private jet perk seems to have ruffled the feathers of certain owners who each pay for their private jets out of money they earn. And yes, reports note, this isn’t the best of times for the NFL right now.


What should Roger Goodell do about private jet travel?


We recommend he buys jet cards based on need. Using jet cards mean he won’t have to worry about ownership, hiring pilots and management of a private jet, and compared to fractional ownership, he can choose from year to year how much he wants to spend based on his travel needs at that time. He also won’t have to worry that a future NFL Commissioner tries to rescind the deal. And after all, there are probably some places he doesn’t want to go anyway (cough, Boston and Dallas).


So how much would it cost Roger Goodell to travel by private jet for the rest of his life?


You can buy a jet card today for 25 hours of annual travel for about $285,000, including the 7.5% Federal Excise Tax. Best of all, this isn’t some small jet. We are talking about a Gulfstream 450 or Bombardier Global Express, the same type of jets your owners have.


If the inflation rate over the next 36 years is 2.5%, this same type of jet card for those same type of big jets, assuming private jets are still a chariot of choice for the well to do, would run $599,000 in 2055. Put another way, if Goodell takes $$8,574,750.00 from the first year of his  new $50 million deal and invests it in a place that returns 2.5% per year (we think he can do better, but we want to be conservative), he will be able to cover 25 hours on a large private jet every year from the day he retires (at 65) until he turns 95.


Put another way, if Roger works six more years and pulls in $50 million per year, that’s $300 million gross earnings, so he can have his cake and eat it too for less than 3% of what the owners will be paying him during that time period. When you consider Goodell can take care of his future private jet travel needs for less than half of the raise the owners are considering, we think he might want to take that private jet for life ask off the table.


And if the commissioner wants to find the best jet card for his needs, an annual subscription to Private Jet Card Comparisons would set Goodell back a mere $250 and enable him to compare over 150 programs by 65 variables.





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