For the first time in the league’s history, they are on the hunt for a vice president that will oversee the league’s sports betting initiatives.
According to Legal Sports Report, the new VP of its kind will adhere closely to the following job description, focusing on these four specific pillars:
- Continuing to protect the integrity of the game.
- Advancing the NFL’s brand and reputation.
- Driving fan engagement globally.
- Growing the value of NFL’s data & IP.
The League’s Change of Heart
Historically, the NFL has been strongly opposed to sports gambling of any kind, as they’ve cited “integrity of the game” as always being their top priority. So, what caused the sudden shift in their gambling philosophy?
The biggest reason is the explosion of legalized sports betting in recent years, beginning with the 2018 Supreme Court decision to legalize sports betting across the states. Currently, 20 states now have some form of legislation allowing legal sports betting, and that number is only expected to increase.
Now that the league has an official team in Las Vegas, the Las Vegas Raiders, and an official casino sponsor in Caesars Entertainment, changing their attitude toward sports betting was the only logical next step.
Here’s how the league described their multiyear casino partnership with Caesars on their website, which could be seen as one of their first public steps toward moving in favor of legalized gambling:
“This multiyear sponsorship is focused on Caesars providing unique experiences for NFL fans by using its casino properties, celebrity chefs, premier music artists and a wide range of entertainment elements.”
Caesars will have the exclusive right to use NFL trademarks in the United States and the United Kingdom to promote Caesars casino properties and activate at key NFL events including the Super Bowl and NFL Draft.
A Wise Move to Embrace Sports Gambling
It’s no surprise that NFL betting is big business, which makes it a wise move for the NFL to finally embrace sports gambling.
They’re also doing it at the right time, with the legalization of sports betting putting many safeguards into place when it comes to wagering, such as game fixing. The NFL can continue to prioritize integrity of the game, while proactively addressing the potential issues that may arise with sports gambling.
While NFL betting is nothing new, the rate at which it’s growing and how it’s growing is what makes this a unique time in betting history. Other professional sports leagues have welcomed gambling, proving to the NFL that the time to enter in the industry is now.
Having a huge casino partnership, the Raiders, and the 2020 NFL Draft all in Vegas couldn’t have come at a better time in looking to create and fill this new role.
An Important New Role
One snippet of the new job description may even point to the NFL including gambling content on its platforms, in describing how the VP will “oversee the distribution of content for gaming purposes and the integration of gaming products into the NFL’s platforms.”
Reporting directly to NFL chief strategy and growth officer, Christopher Halpin, the new VP of sports betting is expected to possess a “deep understanding” of the sports betting and sports business landscapes.
One thing’s for sure. The landscape of sports betting in changing across the entire country, and the NFL finally being on board with it will bring about even more exciting changes.