Partnerships with Gambling Industry
For years, the NFL hesitated to involve itself with the gambling industry. However, recent developments have seen the league embrace these partnerships. Companies like FanDuel, DraftKings, and Caesars have all secured deals with the NFL as more states legalize sports betting. Perhaps most notably, this year’s Super Bowl will take place in Las Vegas, the iconic gambling capital of America.
According to the American Gaming Association, a staggering 67.8 million Americans are expected to place bets on Super Bowl LVIII. This represents a significant 35% increase from the previous year. Furthermore, it is estimated that Americans will wager a record-breaking $23.1 billion on this year’s game, surpassing last year’s $16 billion.
Rapid Expansion of Legal Sports Betting
A total of 38 states, along with Washington, D.C., now offer some form of legal sports betting. This amounts to approximately 67% of the American adult population, as reported by the AGA.
NFL’s Stance on Players Gambling
While the league acknowledges the increasing prevalence of gambling, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is adamant that players abstain from placing bets during the Super Bowl week. The league has established strict rules to ensure that no NFL players wager any of the anticipated $23.1 billion in bets. These regulations apply to both the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers.
Restricted Access to Las Vegas Strip
To safeguard against temptation, players from both teams will not be accommodated near the Las Vegas Strip. Instead, they will stay approximately 20 miles away at Lake Las Vegas, as announced by the NFL.
Prohibition on Gambling Activities
Restrictions for Other NFL Athletes
Visiting NFL athletes from the league’s remaining 30 teams are also banned from entering a sportsbook until after the Super Bowl concludes. However, they are permitted to partake in casino games such as blackjack.
Post-Super Bowl Freedom
Following the conclusion of the Super Bowl, all NFL players are free to engage in casino games and sports betting on non-NFL events to their heart’s content.
NFL Betting Rules for the Super Bowl in Las Vegas
The NFL has established specific rules regarding gambling during the Super Bowl in Las Vegas. According to Jeff Miller, the NFL’s executive vice president of communications, public affairs, and policy, any player, coach, personnel, or individual associated with the league who is caught gambling in a casino will be subject to the disciplinary process.
Although there are numerous retail sportsbooks in Las Vegas, it remains unclear how the NFL plans to monitor and enforce these rules.
When contacted for a comment, the NFL reiterated its gambling policy and emphasized the importance of preserving the integrity of the game during the highly anticipated and thrilling Super Bowl LVIII.
In recent years, several NFL players have faced suspensions for betting on NFL games. For instance, wide receiver Calvin Ridley was suspended for one year in 2022 and had to forfeit $11 million in salary.
The NFL was the last major American sports league to establish official sports betting deals. Additionally, the league still prohibits individual NFL players from entering into endorsement deals with sportsbooks. In contrast, athletes in the NBA, NHL, and MLB are permitted to do so. Just last week, NBA star LeBron James and DraftKings sportsbook announced their partnership.
It is essential for all fans and viewers to contribute to upholding the integrity of the game and avoiding any suggestion of impropriety during Super Bowl LVIII.
Related Read: Super Bowl Quarterback Brock Purdy’s Earnings
Brock Purdy, the quarterback for the Super Bowl, earned a substantial amount of money this season, totaling $870,000. Interestingly, 16 college football players made even more money through the Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) program.