November 21, 2017

THERE'S NO SUCH THING AS QUALITY:

The Value of Each Draft Pick: A Re-Examination of Massey-Thaler Surplus Value under the New CBA (Brian Burke, 15 January 2016, Advanced Football Analysis)


The green line is the surplus value. It ranges from under 1/2 a million to a peak of over $2M through the second round. The irregularities/discontinuities in the curve are due to the draftee salaries. The abrupt uptick in surplus value is at pick #33, where the second round begins. The general results are congruent with Massey-Thaler's original surplus value curve, but the particular magnitudes of the surplus are considerably different.

I expected that the new CBA would result in much more surplus value at the very top of the draft, but that's not the case. The timeframe of the Massey-Thaler paper did not include the Stafford-Bradford years, where very top draftee salaries exploded. It seems that the new CBA restored the balance of an earlier era, the era covered by Massey-Thaler, rather than radically altering the landscape. It seems that teams are now paying nearly market salaries for the very top picks.

These new results indicate much higher surplus value for "second day" picks of the 2nd and 3rd rounds than previously found. The causes of the difference are that the "FA Cost" curve (red curve above) is slightly flatter than before (compared to Massey-Thaler's "Performance Value" curve), and that the salaries of mid-round picks are noticeably depressed. The combination of both effects results in greater surplus.

Posted by at November 21, 2017 3:46 PM

  

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