Since the NFL is the most watched sport in the United States, it’s unsurprising that football is also the country’s number one sport for betting.
American sportsbooks take billions of dollars in bets during the NFL season, while fans and bettors alike are most engaged during the Super Bowl when the betting handle goes through the roof.
Last year’s estimate by the American Gaming Association showed that around 50 million people (or about 20% of the adult population) were willing to bet a total of $16 billion on the Chiefs vs. Eagles championship game alone.
Next year, however, these numbers are expected to go even further.
It’s still early to make projections, but an increased number of NFL bets during the next season is almost a given for the simple fact that sports betting in the U.S. is still growing.
Several more states have legalized sports betting between last year’s and this year’s NFL seasons. Ohio sportsbooks were only partially available in the previous season as they started accepting bets on January 1st, while Massachusetts online sports betting launched a few months later in May.
Meanwhile, sports betting is scheduled to take off in Kentucky by the end of the year, and North Carolina sportsbooks plan to launch sometime in early 2024.
These four states join over 30 others that have already legalized sports betting in some capacity (online, retail, or both) and will undoubtedly contribute to the overall rise of the NFL betting handle.
There are many new tools that make it easier for sportsbook players to turn a profit as well. Bettors now have access to everything from NFL odds comparison tools to lucrative sign-up bonuses to give themselves a better shot at making money.
Aside from sportsbooks (and a number of smart and lucky bettors), the NFL itself will continue profiting from sports betting expansion that keeps unlocking new revenue opportunities.
Almost every NFL team now has some form of a sponsorship deal with either a sportsbook or a daily fantasy sports platform, and this will continue to be the trend with the opening of new sports betting markets. For example, the Carolina Panthers will easily find a betting partner now that sports betting is becoming legal in NC.
On the other hand, the NFL is facing a challenge in terms of keeping the league’s integrity in check in relation to sports betting. Namely, 10 different players have been caught betting on NFL games over the past two years, with Isaiah Rodgers, Demetrius Taylor, and Rashod Berry being the latest culprits. The league has aptly suspended all of these players, but these scandals definitely don’t look good for either the NFL or the sportsbooks.