History has recorded that William Heffelfinger was the first
person to be paid for playing football, receiving $500 for playing
a game for the Allegheny Athletic Association against the
Pittsburgh Athletic Club on November 12, 1892.
As far as the NFL goes, the first game was played in Dayton, Ohio on October 3, 1920 Pennsylvania (this is true! It is not Ohio!) The first American football game that used players that were paid for playing was played in Pennsylvania in 1892. The first NFL game was played in Ohio in 1920.