The work behind the scenes

Miami was not all fun and games for a handful of professionals at the Super Bowl. Like many other agents who were there, I was busy playing concierge for my clients.

Some of the biggest names in the agent business were busy catering to their players’ needs. I got off fairly easily since I don’t have a high-maintenance group of guys. Most of my clients are mature and married and don’t take part in the partying aspect of the game anymore. However, for those agents with high-profile clients, they were busy arranging rooms, transportation, party passes, tickets and dinners and putting out fires.

I had my assistant and marketing coordinator in South Beach to make sure what few needs my clients did have were taken care of right away. For example, when my clients made their way to the GQ/Yardbarker/NFP party, we made sure their parking was taken care of and that they were greeted at the door with wristbands and briefed on the venue layout. My assistant made certain they had an escort to their tables or area.

A lot of the Super Bowl parties are sheer feeding frenzies, with everyone claiming to be big shots. The lines and scenes at the front doors of these gigs are chaotic. Everyone brings more people to the party than they’re supposed to, and inevitably the venues swell beyond capacity so that no one can get service for food or drinks, the bathroom lines are long and no one can move. It’s really not fun. Every now and then, somebody gets it right and throws a great party.

Many of the large agencies throw parties in conjunction with a magazine or even a liquor label. For years, Leigh Steinberg’s agency teamed up with Playboy to create an in-demand destination for his clients. Sometimes, these parties got so crowded that his own clients couldn’t get in.

The Super Bowl party is also perfectly timed as a recruiting tool. Several large agencies pluck their rookie clients out of combine training for a long weekend and will fly them to the game under the guise of shaking hands with potential sponsors/endorsers. It’s just another window-dressing recruiting gimmick that most young guys can’t say no to. However, there may be a few high-profile rookies who can benefit from making a few connections, but I haven’t seen it happen too often. Besides, four days of partying isn’t a good plan for a rookie trying to impress teams at the combine.

All in all, the Super Bowl does make a decent setting to connect face to face with the top of the industry’s food chain. However, the trick is to balance some fun with work while creating opportunities for your clients. Miami was a bit spread out between South Beach and Ft. Lauderdale, but for the most part, it served as a good venue.

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