The NFL is expanding its partnership with the National Council on Problem Gaming (NCPG) with a multi-year, multimillion dollar commitment to help sports bettors wager responsibly.
The messaging — officially titled “Stick to Your Game Plan. Always Bet Responsibly” — will encourage would-be gamblers to set a budget, know their limits, only use licensed and regulated sportsbooks, and to ask for help if they feel they are treading in dangerous waters.
“We feel it is critical that the NFL uses the power of our voice to educate and encourage fans who choose to bet to do so in a safe and responsible way,” Christopher Halpin, NFL executive vice president, chief strategy and growth officer said in a press release. “We also recognize that responsible betting programs across the country are under-resourced, especially as legalization spreads nationwide. Collectively, all of us in the sports and betting industries need to learn from international examples and make sure the development of education and support programs matches the state-by-state growth in legalized sports betting. In collaboration with the National Council on Problem Gambling and our commercial partners, the league is fully committed to advancing responsible betting awareness, education, and problem-gambling support.”
Expansion of youth programs in the offing
In teaming up with the NCPG, the NFL’s money will allow the advocacy group to launch a national grant program to help pay for enhanced services at the state and local levels, including expanding the youth-facing programs already in place. Additionally, the deal will allow the NCPG to upgrade the national problem gambling helpline system and help fund a new website, www.responsibleplay.org, which will serve as a resource to inform the public about betting safely along with support resources.
“The National Council on Problem Gambling is pleased to partner with the NFL to shine a light on the importance of responsible betting,” said Keith Whyte, executive director for the National Council on Problem Gambling. “With this partnership, we are able to exponentially enhance the NCPG’s ability to provide advocacy, awareness, and assistance on problem gambling. The NFL’s far-reaching initiative demonstrates its strong commitment to being an industry leader in raising awareness. The league’s support of our advocacy efforts will help fund new communications initiatives, such as ResponsiblePlay.org and a PSA about problem gambling, expand gambling prevention services where they are most needed, and modernize our National Problem Gambling Helpline operations with updated capabilities.”
Starting immediately and continuing throughout the remainder of the NFL season, fans will see the rollout of the campaign online, in stadiums, via social media, and in print materials. In a few weeks time, national and local television ads will be played during games and on NFL owned-and-operated channels. The NFL is also working with individual teams to get the message out on the local level.