NRL clubs are paying more than the NRL Players Union to players to secure lucrative contracts and cover the expenses of the governing body, according to the AFL Players’ Association.

The NRLPA has been critical of the NRL over its payments to players, claiming they are not fair.

The union says the NRL has “unfairly rewarded” players who have made significant contributions to the game.

“It’s unfair to the players, it’s unfair for the players to get paid more, it undermines the integrity of the game,” the AFLPA chief executive, Adam Simpson, said.

“What they’re getting is a payout that doesn’t seem fair to the whole of the league, so I think it’s fair for the player to have the benefit of it.”

Players have said they feel they are being paid unfairly.

“I think they’ve got the biggest cut of the players in terms of what they’re being paid,” Bulldogs forward Tim Membrey said.

NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg said the union was not aware of the payments.

“We are in touch with the Players Union and will work with them to ensure that the money that is being paid to players is fair,” he said.

Simpson said the NRLPA would make it clear to the NRL that any payment to players that was not related to an NRL match or player engagement would not be paid.

“Players are entitled to a fair share of the revenue generated from the NRL,” he told ABC Radio.

“If they’re not paying a fair amount, then that’s a problem.”

NRL players are eligible for up to $1.2 million for the 2016 season.

The salary cap was reduced to $7 million in 2017-18 from the previous season’s cap of $21 million.

The $1 million cap was increased to $9 million in 2018-19.