Tweet of the Week
By: Marc Edelman, Professor at Dwayne O. Andreas School of Law; Summer Professor at Fordham School of Law
@MarcEdelman: “NFL to allow casino advertising in stadiums. Is this the first small step toward an inevitable link? articles.baltimoresun.com/2012-04-16/new…” – April 17, 2012
The NFL holds a strict stance against betting on football games. This did not stop them, however, from recently deciding to allow teams to accept advertisements from casinos. Historically, the NFL refused to allow teams to accept any form of advertising from casinos and the like, but now they will allow all 32 teams to accept advertising on a limited basis from casinos in their markets. Many other professional sports leagues have allowed teams to develop marketing partnerships with casinos or accept casino ads for years. So, some say that it is about time that the NLF joined the party.
There are certainly restrictions on the advertising. Events or promotions are not allowed. Additionally, advertisers cannot use team logos or offer special sections or clubs sponsored by casinos. In one sense, the allowance of casino advertising could potentially offer a big payoff for teams like the Philadelphia Eagles, which has 20 casinos in close proximity to their stadium. Yet, it still begs the question: is the NFL being hypocritical?
The NFL has been pretty vocal about its strong opposition against betting on games, yet they will allow their teams to advertise for local casinos. The NFL seems to justify its new advertising policy by saying that it prohibits advertising from casinos that have sports betting. Brian McCarthy, spokesman for the NFL, stated, “We remain steadfast in our opposition to the proliferation of gambling on NFL games. There is a distinction between accepting advertising in this limited fashion and gambling on the outcome of our games.” You know what, I think he is right.
It is arguably hypocritical, but the more important question is what does this mean for the future between NFL and gambling? Guess we will just have to wait and see.
If you would like to learn a bit more on the general topic of gambling, particularly online sports gambling, I suggest you check out a great blog series by my classmate, Andrew Fleischman.