Research Publication Title

Do NFL Player Conduct Violations Affect Team Wins?

Presenter Information

Ethan ParsonsFollow

Major

Economics

Faculty Mentor

Brooke Conaway

Keywords

Econometrics, Behavior, NFL, Regulations, Culture, Conduct, Fines

Abstract

Do NFL Player Conduct Violations Affect Team Wins? The NFL places a large emphasis on how players conduct themselves on and off the field. Players must abide by specific rules and codes of conduct, and violations can result in hefty fines and suspensions. Previous authors used individual violations, and found players with an arrest record are actually paid more and perform better on-field than their peers who have not been arrested (Humphrys, Simmons, and Soebbing 2014). While player-level research on behavior in the NFL does exist, there is no literature regarding how player conduct violations might affect team performance. Utilizing data on a number of violations and fine amounts, I used an ordinary least squares regression technique to determine if the behavior of players on a team has any effect on the number of games they win. I collected data from four seasons between 2015-19 from major sports data repositories, which included fine size and number of fines per season, as well as control variables such as offensive/defensive rankings and difficulty of schedule. I used the total dollar amount of fines incurred by each team as a measure of the severity of the violations of the code of conduct, and the total number of fines received to measure how often players violated the code of conduct. The results of my research show that neither the severity nor frequency of player violations has a statistically significant effect on the number of games their team wins. References Humphreys, Brad R. and Simmons, Rob W. and Soebbing, Brian. 2014. Does Crime Pay? The Effect of Off-Field Behavior on Player Salaries In the National Football League. Fox School of Business Research Paper 16-005.

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Do NFL Player Conduct Violations Affect Team Wins?

Do NFL Player Conduct Violations Affect Team Wins? The NFL places a large emphasis on how players conduct themselves on and off the field. Players must abide by specific rules and codes of conduct, and violations can result in hefty fines and suspensions. Previous authors used individual violations, and found players with an arrest record are actually paid more and perform better on-field than their peers who have not been arrested (Humphrys, Simmons, and Soebbing 2014). While player-level research on behavior in the NFL does exist, there is no literature regarding how player conduct violations might affect team performance. Utilizing data on a number of violations and fine amounts, I used an ordinary least squares regression technique to determine if the behavior of players on a team has any effect on the number of games they win. I collected data from four seasons between 2015-19 from major sports data repositories, which included fine size and number of fines per season, as well as control variables such as offensive/defensive rankings and difficulty of schedule. I used the total dollar amount of fines incurred by each team as a measure of the severity of the violations of the code of conduct, and the total number of fines received to measure how often players violated the code of conduct. The results of my research show that neither the severity nor frequency of player violations has a statistically significant effect on the number of games their team wins. References Humphreys, Brad R. and Simmons, Rob W. and Soebbing, Brian. 2014. Does Crime Pay? The Effect of Off-Field Behavior on Player Salaries In the National Football League. Fox School of Business Research Paper 16-005.

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