Report: NFL expects to generate $270 million from gambling deals

In this photo illustration, US 100 dollar bills seen on an
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The NFL has gone from hating gambling to loving it, because the NFL has found a way to turn gambling into an extremely viable revenue stream.

With more and more American states legalizing sports wagering, and with the NFL abandoning its past shunning of most things gambling, the league will be making plenty of money from its altered position.

Via the Washington Post, the league expects to generate roughly $270 million in revenue this year from sports betting and gambling deals. NFL executive V.P. and chief strategy and growth officer Christoper Halpin says that, eventually, gambling will become a 10-figure revenue stream. Annually.

“You can definitely see the market growing to $1 billion-plus of league opportunity over this decade,” Halpin told the Post.

That’s great news for football, but it comes with an inherent warning for the current stewards of the game. If some of that revenue isn’t devoted to ensuring the accuracy of calls, protecting inside information, preventing corruption of coaches, players, and officials, and otherwise safeguarding the integrity of the game, the league will be stepping into a bear trap, eventually.

As more and more dollars are legally bet on pro football games, governmental officials will demand that the playing field becomes as level as possible. One scandal will potentially light a fuse for legislation, regulation, and/or prosecution.

Early in the process of various states adopting gambling programs, some sports leagues wanted a piece of the action for the sole purpose of financing programs aimed at ensuring the integrity of the games. That approach never took root, but that doesn’t mean the sports leagues shouldn’t strive for the highest degree of integrity possible.

If they fail, the federal government will do it for them. Thus, the NFL and the other sports leagues must think creatively and proactively to identify all potential problems and to solve them. Unfortunately, creative and proactive thought and execution isn’t one of the NFL’s strong suits.

36 responses to “Report: NFL expects to generate $270 million from gambling deals

  1. It’s sad that the NFL has gotten so involved with gambling. In the long run it can do nothing but harm the game. There will be too much temptation for players and coaches. And I believe that it will eventually be the demise of the league. I know a lot of gambling junkies will disagree with me here, but even they can’t feel that it’s good for the league.

  2. That $270M or $1B comes at a cost. Makes those of us that love the game love it a little less. Tougher to quantify that list dollar amount, but certainly not great for the perception of the game.

  3. Go buy DraftKings stock and make money too. Or sit there and complain about how bad gambling is….I can see these gambling sticks are like buying google,Apple ans Amazon when they were $20 a share….they’re going to go up up up! Bet on it!

  4. While 270 Million is a ton of money…

    I would have expected that figure to be significantly hire to start off.

  5. At a billion dollars a year that works out to $31.25 million per team or roughly $15 million to the salary cap. While the teams are certainly not going to turn that money away, is it enough to warrant fans possibly believing that games are being fixed?

  6. jkossrt says:
    August 27, 2021 at 11:06 am
    It’s sad that the NFL has gotten so involved with gambling. In the long run it can do nothing but harm the game. There will be too much temptation for players and coaches. And I believe that it will eventually be the demise of the league. I know a lot of gambling junkies will disagree with me here, but even they can’t feel that it’s good for the league.

    ——————-
    You’re obviously too young to remember the 70’s and 80’s. The ‘Parlay Cards’ that cost a dollar and 500 plus college students watching Sunday’s game hoping to win 5 to 25 bucks was a very big deal. And I went to a small college. . No way the whole baseball team begs the HC for early Sunday practice so we could catch the early game.

    In the 80’s one of the reasons the USFL failed because no one knew how to bet it. So no one watched it. Bookies stopped giving out USFL lines PEOPLE BET LIKE MAD ON TELEVISED GAMES. Everyone knows that.

    The NFL? People have no idea of the cash flow from those days. Betting is the direct reason baseball was supplanted. Just the ‘money lines’ was enough to confuse the average person who bet small, so the didn’t.

    Gambling is the best thing that ever happened to the NFL. Then big screens, then Madden then Fantasy. Fantasy Football is BIG money in baseball and football.

    The fact that various avenues existed since day 1, I doubt being legal will change anything. It’s not Hoops where one player can make a huge difference. You have to get to the QB? Good luck. All the average ones have grand kids set for life, let alone the good ones…

  7. Those blown calls at the end of close games must come to an immediate end. They may want to make everything re viewable in the 4th qtr but they have to do more. Having angry fans is one thing, having furious legalized gamblers brings lawsuits.

  8. Ironic how betting on a game is considered “gambling” while betting on a company’s stock is considered “investing”.

  9. I’m a huge fan and also have some money in the companies like Penn and Score Media. It opens up an entertaining aspect of the games and I watch more closely, especially sports which I haven’t followed.

    Who doesn’t want to bet on how many punts in the second half of the lions bears in October.

    Yahoo fantasy app and its gambling side has me putting in a a couple bucks a week on some daily fantasy games for baseball. And being in Canada and having access to sportsbooks (now that single game gambling is legal in canada) is huge.

  10. NFL non-scientific Covid Testing protocols have the potential to affect the spread and possibly outcomes of some of these games…imagine betting on the Ravens a day or two before Sunday…then suddenly Lamar tests positive the day of…yikes!

  11. Can’t say the league has been anti-gambling, at least since the institution of injury reports (the 1980s?) as those are COMPLETELY for gamblers.

  12. Ironic how betting on a game is considered “gambling” while betting on a company’s stock is considered “investing”.

    —————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

    For one, that’s not what irony is. For two, betting on one company’s stock is called “speculation”, i.e. gambling. Betting on a portfolio of diversified stocks with negative correlation is “investing”. Don’t oversimplify it.

  13. Back when players had off-season jobs, the likelihood of scandal would be high. Now, though, with the best bribe targets — QBs, RBs, kickers, head coaches — making millions or tens of millions, the chances of a scandal are microscopic. Who would accept a bribe that would be a small fraction of his salary, risking loss of livelihood and prison? Nobody sane. Plus, the “bookies” — Draft Kings, Fan Duel, etc. — are making hundreds of millions legally each year. Above board. That being so, who does the bribing? Some guy named Dominic working out of his 2004 Camry? This works for everybody. (Note: I live in Ohio, so I can’t make a legal bet on my beloved Brownies. But I do have Dominic’s phone number.)

  14. And yet, they will cheap out on resolution of debatable flags and game situations necessitating Replay as we’ve seen. They won’t spend a few million to put in place something that insures against major mistakes that might, for lack of a better term, shake consumer and gambler confidence. Not to mention disillusioning fans. If you told me the owners walked around the stadium after a game picking up change under each seat that’s sticky from beer and spilled drinks if believe it.

  15. bfindeisen says:
    August 27, 2021 at 1:54 pm
    Ironic how betting on a game is considered “gambling” while betting on a company’s stock is considered “investing”.

    —————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

    For one, that’s not what irony is. For two, betting on one company’s stock is called “speculation”, i.e. gambling. Betting on a portfolio of diversified stocks with negative correlation is “investing”. Don’t oversimplify it.

    ———

    He obviously doesn’t understand investing. Moreover I would add that when I purchase a stock or shares in a mutual fund, I own it. The price may go up and down but it remains an asset to me. There is none of this in betting. The closest thing to his analogy would be options trading….and even that is a stretch

  16. They just continue to destroy the game in the name of revenue I tune out more each year.

  17. That’s not a lot in the grand scheme of things. The juice isn’t worth the squeezing, IMO.

  18. You’re obviously too young to remember the 70’s and 80’s. The ‘Parlay Cards’ that cost a dollar and 500 plus college students watching Sunday’s game hoping to win 5 to 25 bucks was a very big deal. And I went to a small college. . No way the whole baseball team begs the HC for early Sunday practice so we could catch the early game.

    In the 80’s one of the reasons the USFL failed because no one knew how to bet it. So no one watched it. Bookies stopped giving out USFL lines PEOPLE BET LIKE MAD ON TELEVISED GAMES. Everyone knows that.

    The NFL? People have no idea of the cash flow from those days. Betting is the direct reason baseball was supplanted. Just the ‘money lines’ was enough to confuse the average person who bet small, so the didn’t.

    Gambling is the best thing that ever happened to the NFL. Then big screens, then Madden then Fantasy. Fantasy Football is BIG money in baseball and football.

    The fact that various avenues existed since day 1, I doubt being legal will change anything. It’s not Hoops where one player can make a huge difference. You have to get to the QB? Good luck. All the average ones have grand kids set for life, let alone the good ones…

    ———————————————————————————————-

    Actually, I’m old enough to remember the 50’s and 60’s. Yes, there were parlay cards that got spread around. They were no where near as popular as online gambling is now. AND, they weren’t endorsed by the league. NFL approved gambling brings the question of fixed games to the forefront. Whether they are or not. The stigma will always be there. I don’t agree also that the reduction in baseball’s popularity was the result of gambling. Football was a more exciting game with more action. That’s why it became NO.1. League endorsed gambling can have no positive impact on the game.

  19. As a European, I find it weird to see how uptight many of you guys are about legalised gambling but how relaxed you are about, for example, gun possession. Gambling on sports, including the NFL, has gone on legally forever in the rest of the world. It’s the USA which is the outlier here in the legalisation of gambling thing. Is all other world sport corrupt ? This is a total non-issue for the NFL.

  20. COVID-19 is the perfect cover for the NFL and Vegas to connect even more together. Now they can say a key player is out with covid , if enough money was bet on said team that player is on to win. That is 100% happening

  21. You can count on the fact that within the next 10 years, there will be a major scandal involving the fixing of games by….the referees. They are by and large old, slow, and very poorly compensated. Thus the NFL’s insistence on not having a smoothly functioning “eye in the sky” for pass interference like the NHL has for goals and offsides calls simply begs for a a problem that will make the Black Sox scandal in baseball look tame by comparison

  22. I don’t see this as a particularly great thing for pro football. Kinda weird to see a professional league align themselves with this. Someone above commented that it only involves the QB if someone was to “throw” a game, not true. A DB can blow coverage, a WR can drop a pass, an OL can let their man by, a kicker can miss a crunch time kick. Most games are usually decided by only a few key plays. Games could be thrown in all sorts of ways. A lot of players play for the money, in theory some could make their wage and throw a game to put a little extra cheese on their taco. Before we were talking about money changing hands through fantasy football, I think this throws a whole new wrench into the cleanliness of the sport. Add in coaches and referees, you never know what could happen. I know it’s a bit far fetched but it is possible. People will be people.

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