Beyond providing some interesting anecdotal media content, the results of the NFL Players Association’s report card regarding the manner in which the 32 teams treat their players has an important practical impact as free agency approaches.
It can be the deciding factor for free agents considering offers from multiple teams.
That’s the benefit to the Vikings and other teams at the top. If they make a financial offer to a player that is relatively the same as the offer made by a team at or near the bottom, the survey results could make a difference.
It also could force teams at the bottom to offer more money to free agents in order to get them to close the deal.
Ideally, it will get the teams at the bottom of the list to change their ways. In a system that requires a certain amount of cash spending, player contracts don’t show whether a team views its players as human beings. Other factors do.
Whether teams are being cheap or simply indifferent to the feelings of their employees (or both), of course it should be a factor in the choices the players make when exercising their free-agency rights.