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Big City Lights

In the last week's installment of the SB Nation Small Market Roundtable, BigBlueShoe at Stampede Blue discussed free agent attraction to big city markets.

This is a really hard topic to discuss because you are trying to determine what a free agent was thinking when he signed, other than how much money was being offered, and which teams are really struggling to financially meet free agent demands. Did no team outbid New England for DE Adelius Thomas last March because they didn't feel he was worth it or they simply didn't have enough money to afford him? In the end, BigBlueShoe doesn't think either really matters:

There is no guarantee that signing a big money free agent will put you over the top, regardless of how big or small your market is. Drafting smart and sticking to your salary cap plan will often win you more games. This is why such a high premium is placed on the NFL Draft.
As important as the NFL draft is to a team, free agency can quickly improve or dismantle part of a team. If a team is unable to compete financially in free agency, then that team is not going to win consistently. There is no evidence that any particular team just can't afford free agency so it appears that all teams are on equal financial footing.

Brian G said some teams don't have enough cash to  hand out big signing bonuses and that is probably true. The Packers lost out on a few free agents this offseason to other teams, but it wasn't because they simply didn't have enough money to pay them. The NFL is so good at making money that this should not be a short term problem for the Packers, but this has been a problem in the past and you never know when it might become a problem in the future.