At many soccer stadiums outside of the US there are kiosks where sports bettors can place a wager on the game they are attending.
The NFL and other American sports leagues are not quite there yet, but their anti-betting cultures are slowly-but-surely softening.
A handful of NFL stadiums will feature “betting lounges” starting in the 2020 season, in fact. Given that sports betting is about to be legalized in Colorado, it’s a safe bet that Empower Field at Mile High could be one of those locales.
Baby steps toward in-stadium betting
The betting lounges will not have traditional betting windows. They will, however, feature betting spreads and other sports betting information visible on screens throughout the lounge.
NFL teams will also be allowed to have the lounges sponsored by specific sportsbooks.
We could see, for instance, something like “The Broncos Betting Bar – Sponsored by FanDuel.”
FanDuel would then be able to display their sportsbook information and specific prop bets throughout the lounge. And patrons would obviously be allowed to wager on the game on their phones within the lounge.
Keep it quiet
Do not expect any grand announcements about the NFL fully embracing gambling culture.
The league is instead tip-toeing into the sports wagering world.
Play Colorado recently contacted the Broncos, asking what their in-stadium plans were when it comes to legal sports betting.
The Broncos deferred to the league “and its stance on sports betting,” and also forwarded Roger Goodell’s 2018 statement on the matter.
We have spent considerable time planning for the potential of broadly legalized sports gambling and are prepared to address these changes in a thoughtful and comprehensive way, including substantial education and compliance trainings for our clubs, players, employees and partners. These efforts include supporting commonsense legislation that protects our players, coaches and fans and maintains public confidence in our games. We are asking Congress to enact uniform standards for states that choose to legalize sports betting that include, at a minimum, four core principles:
- There must be substantial consumer protections;
- Sports leagues can protect our content and intellectual property from those who attempt to steal or misuse it;
- Fans will have access to official, reliable league data; and
- Law enforcement will have the resources, monitoring and enforcement tools necessary to protect our fans and penalize bad actors here at home and abroad.