NFL players should take note of their peers’ recent violations of the NFL’s gambling policy.
According to one gambling expert, that lesson could be one silver lining from the news that Indianapolis Colts kick returner/defensive back Isaiah Rodgers is reportedly facing a potential lifetime ban for betting on games that he played in.
Chris Grove — a co-founding partner at Acies Investments, a VC fund that focuses on sports betting — told Front Office Sports that teams should use situations like Rodgers’ as the ultimate education tool regarding the NFL’s gambling rules.
In April, five players on the Detroit Lions were suspended by the NFL for also violating the league’s gambling policy. In September, Jacksonville Jaguars receiver Calvin Ridley will play in his first NFL game in nearly two years after betting on games in 2021 while with the Atlanta Falcons.
The proliferation of legalized sports betting in the U.S. hasn’t made more professional athletes interested in gambling, Grove says, but simply made it easier for the leagues to track betting activity among its players and employees.
Grove says the betting industry is certainly following cases like Rodgers’ but isn’t worried about any negative impacts on the partnerships with leagues like the NFL.
The NFL has a multitude of sports betting partners, including major sportsbooks like Caesars, DraftKings, and FanDuel, which originally came on board in deals totalling nearly $1 billion.