I'll keep this short. I am a male and was both a college cheerleader and an NFL cheerleader (Baltimore Ravens).
1. NFL cheerleaders (at least Baltimore) don't make much money at all. The pay is around $100 per game and doesn't cover all the costs of travel or compensate the cheerleaders for practices twice per week. It actually would likely be illegal if it were ever scrutinized since the amount in total for all the work required amounts to less than minimum wage. A scholarship (which most universities do not provide to cheerleaders) would be WAAAAY more money than most NFL cheerleaders will ever make doing the 'side-line' job....pun intended.
2. The reason you see cheerleaders out in the community (all women) is that they are paid for appearances by the folks who request them. So if a grocery store is openings, bars, parties, etc requests them, then they foot the bill for a usually hour long appearance. The coach tells the girls at practice which ones are available and the girls RUSH to be the first to claim them...unless it's a charity appearance which most (except the really nice girls) don't want to wast their time doing.
3. If there are male cheerleaders there will be stunts or as you said "lifting maneuvers". Men don't dance...at least real men don't. Men are only there to yell, base pyramids and stunt with the girls. If you ever see a male cheerleader dancing, please please please make fun of him and tell him to stop, as he is giving the rest of us (even the former ones) a bad name.
4. Yes, sex sells and no, people don't come to see the male cheerleaders. Men are there to essentially act as furniture upon which the women are displayed. That's how it has always been and always will be. It makes no difference if it is college or the NFL, the men are not there to be seen, they are there to enable the women everyone is watching to do more interesting and entertaining things. The gay male cheerleaders are generally the only male cheerleaders who believe people are actually there to see them...no offense intended...if you ask them they will tell you the same thing. Most of the straight guys (which contrary to popular belief are in the vast majority) are there because they originally wanted to have a better shot at dating the girls and only later found out it's really kind of fun and you get a kick ass view of the game....and you DO get to date (or Marry) the girls.
5. Finally, the real reason there aren't many NFL squads with male cheerleaders is that women have predominated the profession (if you can call it that) since the inception of the NFL. Unlike college cheer leading which started with men, migrated to women and then back again, the NFL has always been almost exclusively women. So, when you say the phrase 'NFL Cheerleader' you are essentially invoking the image of a smoking hot girl. Men don't fit that bill and probably never will. When I cheered in the NFL, I never told anyone I did it, not friends nor family. I still don't mention it to anyone save for other people who were cheerleaders and the people who knew me while I did it.
Generally, I think it would be more entertaining to have stunts and pyramids go up in NFL games, especially for losers like Detroit, KC and St. Louis, Seattle and Cleveland. At least they would have something to watch!