NFL Director of Football Operations

Last Updated:
September 19, 2023

Job Description Overview

An NFL Director of Football Operations is a crucial position in the sports industry responsible for overseeing football operations in the National Football League (NFL). Their main job is to manage and coordinate all aspects of game day operations such as scheduling, logistics, facility management, equipment management, and more. 

In addition to game day operations, the NFL Director of Football Operations job description also includes the management of the NFL's player development programs, which is aimed at providing athletes with the necessary tools to succeed on and off the field. This includes managing coaching, training, and educational programs to improve player performance, health and wellness. The Director of Football Operations also helps organize and manage the NFL Draft, where college players are selected by different NFL teams.

Overall, the NFL Director of Football Operations job description requires strong communication skills, meticulous attention to detail, and excellent organizational skills. Candidates should have a deep understanding of the football industry, and a proven track record in managing people and programs. A bachelor's degree in sports management, business administration, or a related field is usually required, along with several years of experience in football operations, coaching or team management.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Oversee the management of all football operations for an NFL team.
  • Coordinate and communicate with team executives, coaches, and staff to ensure smooth team operations.
  • Develop and implement strategic plans to achieve team goals and objectives.
  • Participate in the hiring and evaluation of football personnel, including coaches, scouts, and players.
  • Manage team budgets and contracts, negotiating player contracts and overseeing payroll.
  • Oversee scouting operations, including player evaluations, drafting, and free agency.
  • Evaluate team performance and provide insights for improvement, including game and practice planning.
  • Serve as a liaison between the team and the NFL league office, ensuring compliance with league rules and regulations.
  • Develop and implement team policies, procedures, and programs to maximize success both on and off the field.

Experience and Education Requirements

To become an NFL Director of Football Operations, you need a combination of education and experience. You usually need a college degree in a related field, like sports management, business, or communication. It's also good to have experience in the football industry, preferably in a management role.

Some directors start as scouts or coaches and work their way up to the top job. Others might have worked in another professional league or in a front office in college football.

Directors of Football Operations oversee everything related to the game, including scheduling, game-day logistics, player contracts, and draft preparation. They need strong leadership, communication, and problem-solving skills to be successful in this role.

Salary Range

According to data from Glassdoor, the salary range for an NFL Director of Football Operations in the United States typically falls between $89,000 to $270,000 per year, with an average salary of $166,000. However, some individuals in this position can earn upwards of $300,000 per year, depending on their experience and the team they work for.

Outside of the US, Football Operations Directors in the Premier League can earn between £300,000 to £600,000 per year (approximately $416,000 to $832,000 USD), according to The Guardian.

It's important to note that salaries for this role can vary depending on the level of experience, the team's success, and other factors.


  • Glassdoor: NFL Director of Football Operations Salary
  • The Guardian: How Football Director of Operations Changed the Game

Career Outlook

The career outlook for an NFL Director of Football Operations is expected to stay relatively stable over the next 5 years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of management occupations, including those in sports operations, is projected to grow 7% from 2018 to 2028. 

Moreover, the NFL is a multi-billion dollar industry, and football operations directors are needed to oversee various aspects of the business, including scouting, player development, and team logistics. As the league continues to expand its reach and popularity across the globe, the demand for skilled and experienced sports operations professionals is likely to remain high.

In conclusion, a career as an NFL Director of Football Operations offers excellent job security and growth potential in the sports industry. Those with a passion for football and a strong business acumen should consider pursuing this exciting career path.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What does an NFL Director of Football Operations do?

A: An NFL Director of Football Operations oversees various aspects related to the on-field aspects of football games.

Q: What are the primary responsibilities of an NFL Director of Football Operations?

A: Some of the main responsibilities of an NFL Director of Football Operations include setting up the game schedules for different teams, coordinating game-day activities, and making rules-related decisions.

Q: What kind of qualifications does one need to become an NFL Director of Football Operations?

A: Qualifications for becoming an NFL Director of Football Operations can include an undergraduate degree in business or sports management, as well as experience gained from jobs at smaller football clubs or collegiate athletic departments.

Q: What is a typical day like for an NFL Director of Football Operations?

A: A typical day for an NFL Director of Football Operations involves working behind the scenes to ensure that everything is set up for a successful football game day, from coordinating logistics like parking to deciding on the best way to handle any issues that may arise.

Q: What are some important skills that an NFL Director of Football Operations should have?

A: Some of the most important skills for an NFL Director of Football Operations include being a good communicator, being able to multitask, and having strong leadership skills. Additionally, it's helpful to have a background in sports or a deep understanding of football.

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