It’s hard to take the NFL brass seriously when they choose to turn a blind eye to the industry that provides them with the most support, the gaming industry. You can’t just ignore such a big part of your game, one would think, but they do. And it’s not only that they refuse to acknowledge the strong relationship between football fans and gambling, but they purposely fail to accept even the statistical facts.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told AOL News, “Sports gambling threatens the integrity of our game…Simply put, gambling and sports do not mix, and we are committed to keeping gambling away from our game.”
Seriously? Gambling and sports do not mix? I’m pretty sure there’s a multi-billion dollar gaming industry built on the mix of gambling and sports. I’m not going to get into the arguments because everyone already knows them. Everyone already knows that hundreds of thousands of people tune in to watch football because of sports betting. Everyone already knows that the Super Bowl is the single biggest wagering event in Las Vegas and North America. Everyone already knows that gambling is already part of the NFL whether the NFL knows it, or chooses to acknowledge it or not. So I won’t get into that.
What I’m wondering is just how long will the league keep this anti-gambling stance?
Times change, perceptions change, people and laws change, but will the NFL?
I’ll conclude by leaving you something to think about, let’s play a game of “What if’s”: What if a time comes when it is the NFL that is approaching the gaming industry for advertising deals?
What if a time comes where sports betting in the US has been legalized and regulated across the country at the State level?
What if Governor Christie signs that bill?