The National Football League sat back and watched the NBA, NHL and MLB make MGM Resorts International their respective official gambling partner without making a move itself.
On Thursday, the NFL announced that it has tabbed Caesars Entertainment Corporation as its first-ever official casino sponsor. And the partnership will begin quickly, as Caesars will start providing NFL fans with unique experiences via its casino properties in conjunction with the playoffs, which begin this weekend with Wild Card action.
According to NFL.com, Caesars will have exclusive rights to use NFL trademarks in promoting its casino properties, including at events such as the Super Bowl and NFL Draft. Just imagine how Caesars is going to promote the 2020 NFL Draft, considering it’s in Las Vegas.
The league believes it has paired up with the right partner to do the job.
"We couldn't be more excited to work with one of the world's largest gaming and entertainment companies," Renie Anderson, senior VP of NFL partnerships, sponsorship and consumer products, told NFL.com. "Combining the NFL with Caesars' expertise in world class entertainment will provide our fans unique experiences both here in the United States and abroad."
It remains to be seen whether the NFL declaring its first-ever official casino sponsor will pave the way for the league to announce an official gambling partner to delve into the booming sports betting industry as its fellow leagues have. But this could be the groundwork for the NFL to at least explore that avenue as an option, so it’s something to keep an eye on as time progresses and more and more states make sports betting legalized. (Thus far, eight states are legalized sports betting states, with many more expected to follow suit this year).
Prior to the NFL striking this deal with Caesars Entertainment, eight teams in the league have already been working with the company. They are the: Atlanta Hawks, Baltimore Ravens, Chicago Bears, Indianapolis Colts, New Orleans Saints, Oakland Raiders and Philadelphia Eagles.