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    How Much Do Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders Make? Salary, Pay Structure, and More

    What do Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders get paid? Everything you need to know about America's sweethearts and their salaries.

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    Last modified on June 20, 2024 at 10:27 am

    Published on June 20, 2024 | 9:20 AM EDT

    The Dallas Cowboys are the most popular (and polarizing) sports franchise in the world, and that intrigue doesn’t just stop at the players on the field.

    The Cowboys cheerleaders have a brand of their own, and they’re known for being the gold standard in the cheerleading world. How much do Dallas’ cheerleaders get paid, and how does their salary compare to other cheerleaders around the NFL?

    What Is a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader’s Salary?

    To be a Cowboys cheerleader, you need to be the best of the best. If you are lucky and talented enough to earn a spot on the team, you will be paid around $400 per game.

    Previously, Cowboys cheerleaders earned just $150 per game, but the rate increased in 2019 after a former cheerleader sued the team.

    “I would say I’m making, like, a substitute teacher [salary],” said former Cowboys cheerleader Kat Puryear. “I would say I’m making, like, Chick-fil-A worker that works full-time.”

    While the money isn’t all that lucrative, there are advantages and perks that come with being a Cowboys cheerleader, which is why it’s a highly coveted role.

    How Does a Cowboys Cheerleader’s Pay Compare With Other Teams?

    Although they are viewed as the best of the best, Cowboys cheerleaders are not the highest paid in the NFL. That crown belongs to cheerleaders on the Miami Dolphins, Minnesota Vikings, New England Patriots, and Philadelphia Eagles, who all earn between $15-20 an hour and $500 per game.

    NFL cheerleaders and their pay has been a topic of discussion for decades. Many agree that they’re underpaid, and most people point to them being independent contractors as a reason why.

    Teams follow state minimum wage rates when figuring out their cheerleaders’ pay, and while some states have higher minimums, some don’t match up price-wise, setting a pay disparity across the league.

    Conversations regarding their wages and how things may change are ongoing, but nothing is imminent to raise the pay for cheerleaders in professional sports.

    Who Is Vonciel Baker? Meet the Longest Running Cowboys Cheerleader Record Holder

    To be picked for the Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders is a tremendous honor. There are many people who try out every year, and just because you were on the team the previous season doesn’t guarantee you a spot the following year.

    That makes the feat of sisters Vonceil and Vanessa Baker even more impressive. The Baker sisters were Cowboys cheerleaders for eight years, and are currently the longest-tenured Cowboys cheerleaders of all time.

    Sarah Hepola, a journalist for Texas Monthly, explored the Baker sisters’ story more in-depth. According to Vonceil, her record-breaking tenure with the Cowboys started way back in 1972, at the age of 20. She heard a radio spot on the popular local station KVIL, where the team advertised an open audition for a new kind of cheerleader, one that would be more like a dancer.

    Even though 100 young women showed up, only seven burst onto the field that first day in August 1972 — Vonciel was one of them. Her younger sister Vanessa joined the Cowboys cheerleaders in 1973.


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    Cowboys Cheerleaders in the Spotlight Thanks to Netflix’s America’s Sweethearts Documentary

    Netflix is putting the Cowboys cheerleaders front and center with their latest documentary, America’s Sweethearts.

    “America’s Sweethearts documents the personal stories behind the uniforms, revealing the ambition and drive shared by the cheerleaders and their coaches through the 2023–24 season,” the streaming service shared in a release earlier this year.

    The streaming giant will give viewers unprecedented access as they follow the Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders from auditions to training camp and the NFL season. Netflix captures the team chasing their dreams for a coveted spot on the squad.

    For the first time, fans will get a behind-the-scenes look at the life of an NFL cheerleader — from what it takes to make the team to everything that goes into exceling as a member of the squad.

    KEEP READING: Do NFL Waterboys Get Paid?

    “Knowing these ladies in our previous show, it was much more about the competition and people loved that. They loved seeing the judging — they like to be judges, be critics,” Kelli Finglass, the Cowboys’ longtime director, told ET.

    “But there’s so much more to this group of women besides the actual competition and that is their real experiences and their lives beyond the audition.”

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