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Employer-Assigned Workload and Human Capital Deterioration: Evidence From the National Football League

Steven Salaga, Brian Mills () and Scott Tainsky

Journal of Sports Economics, 2020, vol. 21, issue 6, 628-659

Abstract: We test whether human capital deterioration is a function of employer decision making with respect to workload allocation. We examine this question in the context of National Football League running backs, where the structure of nonguaranteed employment contracts has the potential to create divergent incentives for franchises and players. We empirically test how employer-assigned workloads impact changes in player productivity and career length. We find that larger employer-assigned workloads result in larger decreases in future productivity. However, players assigned larger workloads tend to have longer careers. These results suggest deleterious physical effects from increased workloads while also implying hiring decisions are partially based on status or exposure effects.

Keywords: human capital; workload; productivity; career duration; contract structure (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1177/1527002520930258

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