A Day in the Life of an Eagles Cheerleader

Philadelphia Eagles fans are more than excited for the 2014-2015 season, the second in the Chip Kelly era and following a 10-6 2013-2014 campaign.   However, its more than the LeSean McCoys and Nick Foles who are coming back for the campaign.  The Cheerleaders are as well.

They’re paid the same as a braces-clad babysitter, and yet often have a decade of highest-level dance and performance experience under their low-slung, sequined belts. But despite national protest over their skimpy wages, super-pumped women are still signing up in droves to be NFL cheerleaders. Jen Ortiz of GQ embedded with 14 high-kicking, OMG-ing Philadelphia Eagles rookies—the team’s largest class in years—to find out why they’re told to act like Miley

Way before that first kick-off of the NFL season, the Rookie Story emerges. Is he gonna start? Will he get cut? Is #Manzieling a thing?! But what about the other set of rookies standing in the tunnel, waiting for their cue to run out onto the field? The other professional athletes who also happen to be physician assistants, speech pathologists, and pre-med majors?

The NFL cheerleader is the real-life ultimate dream girl. The Kelly Kapowskis and Ali Larter-in-VarsityBlue-s of the world. The Sunday afternoon eye candy that, lately, isn’t taking any of the league’s alleged precedent of crazily low (sometimes illegal!) standard wages bullshit anymore. After a visit to the City of Brotherly Love and questionable sports fans; after overhearing a kid eagerly albeit skeptically ask, “Are they real cheerleaders?”; and after seeing grown, adult men revert to their dirt-toeing 12-year-old selves when they walk by, I met her—or, fourteen of her. For two days, I embedded with the largest rookie class the NFL Philadelphia Eagles cheerleaders have recruited in years. Pompoms ahead.

Read the entire article here on GQ