The National Football League has been taking an aggressive approach when it comes to sports betting, and they have continued that stance this week. The league recently announced that teams are allowed to seek out sponsorship opportunities with sportsbook operators, which will bring sports betting to the forefront of the game.
The NFL also announced that sports betting lounges will be permitted in a handful of stadiums throughout the league, beginning at the start of the upcoming 2020 regular season.
Teams in the NFL will still have to abide by state rules and regulations, and that will help determine which stadiums will be able to open up and operate a sports betting lounge as well. Some teams have already started to construct this type of thing inside of their stadium, while other stadiums will have to get creative to add this feature to their home stadium.
There are close to 20 states across the country that have legalized sports betting, and many others are expected to discuss the issue this year.
The NFL isn’t willing to go all-in with the sports betting industry yet, though, and they continue to fight against retail sportsbooks. Even though sports betting lounges can be open on game day, there can be no retail sports betting of any kind done inside the stadium during the game.
Fans who want to bet on the action will have to utilize mobile betting options, but the sports betting lounge will give those fans a place to congregate and watch the action.
Even though the NFL is willing to allow teams to seek out sponsorship opportunities with sportsbook operators, there are some pretty specific rules and regulations that go along with that announcement.
Sportsbook sponsors are able to display signage throughout stadiums, but this signage is prohibited from being in the lower levels of the stadium.
The word “sponsor” must also be included when mentioning this partnership, and the NFL is going to be very strict about teams following these rules.
A Matter Of Time
The NFL fought against the sports betting industry for a long time, but this new announcement seemed inevitable, and a long time coming. Betting on the NFL has become extremely popular in Europe, and it has helped that the NFL has been playing at least two games over there for the last few years.
There is just too much money involved in the sports betting industry, and the NFL wants a piece of the action.
There are currently just four states that host NFL teams that are eligible to operate a sports betting lounge at NFL stadiums. Indiana, Nevada, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania are the complete list as we head to March, but Illinois and Tennessee are expected to have things up and running soon.
Expect announcements from NFL teams in these states soon detailing their plans on opening up a betting lounge. Even though retail sportsbooks are currently prohibited by the NFL, that could change in the coming seasons.