Skip to Content

What Do NFL Players Do During the Offseason?

What Do NFL Players Do During the Offseason?

Although the NFL season is considerably shorter than other professional sports leagues seasons, it is, perhaps, an even more grueling and difficult schedule. With the rough-and-tumble nature of the sport, many NFL players look forward to the offseason to allow their body some rest before resumption of the next season.

However, besides resting, just what do NFL players do during the offseason?

Below, we are going to take a deep dive look into just what NFL players do during the offseason and their time away from their teams. In addition, we will discuss how these offseason routines and habits help NFL players to prepare for an upcoming season both mentally and physically.

How Long is the NFL Offseason?

The NFL, traditionally, is played from the beginning of September through the beginning of February for the Super Bowl.  Typically, teams will play 17 regular season games, with the start of the playoffs occurring in January.  The majority of the 17 games will be played against divisional and conference rivals, with fewer games played against teams in separate conferences.

However, from the 17 regular season games, only half, either 8 or 9, of the games will be played at a team’s home stadium.  This means that the remaining half of the games, or the remaining 8 or 9 games, will be played on the road.  And while, for some teams, playing on the road requires little more than a couple of hours road trip to the stadium, for many NFL teams, playing on the road requires significant air travel and lodging accommodations.

In addition, for the 14 teams which qualify for the NFL playoffs, additional games, travel, and lodging will be required, all of which place additional stress and fatigue on the players and staff.  And while NFL players are paid handsomely for their time, the stress and fatigue can be difficult and can place a toll on their bodies.

Do NFL Players Get Time Off During the Regular Season?

NFL players, contrary to popular belief, do not get paid time off.  Historically, NFL players have been provided with little time off during the regular season. And although the regular season does not start until September, most NFL players are expected to begin attending training camps starting in July.

The reason that the NFL does not provide time-off is that it is a full-time commitment and one that players take seriously.  In order to not only prove themselves, and also be there for their team, NFL players will rarely take time off from play unless absolutely necessary due to an illness or death in the family.

Similarly, for most NFL players, even if they are unable to play and participate in a game due to injury, they will still travel with the team to the game and will remain on the bench throughout the duration of the game.  This is done to provide morale and support to their team and their respective teammates.

Do NFL Players Train During the Offseason?

The NFL is made up of the best football players from around the world.  These players not only compete on a high-level day-in and day-out but also push themselves during the offseason to maintain their high-level of play, athleticism, and overall strength and fitness.

In addition, many NFL players will invest in specific football training equipment to assist them to better their game and their overall football skills during the offseason.  This not only includes free weights and cardiovascular equipment but also bench pressing, deadlifts, and squatting which helps players improve their overall game.

Things NFL Players do During the Offseason

While training, preparing, and maintaining themselves and their game level for the upcoming season is important, many NFL players will take time during the offseason for themselves and their families.  Below are a few activities, projects, and undertakings which NFL players take during the offseason.

  • Spend time with family, friends, and loved ones – perhaps above all else, NFL players will spend the majority of their time in the offseason with their family, friends, and loved ones.  This includes travelling to their home city and reconnecting with family members and visiting old friends.  During an NFL season, with the level of travel and training sessions needed, it can be difficult to keep up with friends and family.  As such, many NFL players will take the time in the offseason to do so.
  • Take a Vacation – while many of us think traveling between cities for games should suffice as a form of travel, NFL players rarely, if ever, are given ample time or opportunity during the regular season to fully visit and take in the cities in which they visit.  As such, during the offseason, many NFL players will travel and take much needed rest and relaxation, either at domestic or international locations.
  • Do Some Charitable Work – in addition to the above, many NFL players will also work on charitable projects and with charitable organizations during the offseason.  A means to give back and show gratitude for their positions in life, NFL players are often some of the most giving of all professional athletes.
  • Work on Business Projects – in addition to charitable projects and organizations, many NFL players will work on their own business ventures and projects.  Often seen as an investment in themselves, and for when they retire, many NFL players will dedicate significant time to business projects.
  • Explore Their Team’s City – for many NFL players who were traded or recently signed to a new team, the offseason is a great time to explore and learn more about their new city.  A major reason why so many NFL players prefer bigger markets and cities, the offseason is a time to explore and learn about the city they now call home.