NFL Ratings Tumble: Sports Betting the Solution?
With NFL ratings struggling, national broadcast networks like FOX, CBS, and ESPN are taking a huge hit.
But with NFL ratings declining 13% year-over-year through the first few weeks of the 2017 season, more and more American regulators are starting to wonder if they should be doing more to hep bring more American betters into the action as well:
Ad Revenue Key
With NFL ratings struggling, national broadcast networks like FOX, CBS, and ESPN are taking a huge hit. They pay big bucks to be able to run NFL games — and get the advertising dollars they attract.
But of course, the smaller the audience, the smaller the advertisement revenue these networks can command:
“All eyes will be on this season’s rating trends. Why do we care so much about the NFL? Well, that’s where the money is,” said media researcher Michael Nathanson.
A Las Vegas Monopoly
Currently, the only place where it is legal to place a sports bet in the United States is Nevada. The Vegas sports betting monopoly is one of the oldest and most well known gambling regulations in the nation — and one that is now increasingly coming under fire.
The NFL and the large national broadcasters counting on it will do almost anything to help bring ratings back up. And many of the top brass around the league are convinced that busting Vegas’ monopoly in favor of legalized sports betting in more states would bring more viewership.
Research has shown that sports betters will watch an average of 19 more football games a year than a casual, non-betting fan.
NJ Suit Key
Currently, the law that gives Vegas a monopoly on sports betting is being challenged by the state of New Jersey.
New Jersey of course has eyes on helping a sagging Atlantic City casino industry that would welcome a new revenue source. However, the case is still making its way though the court system, and is scheduled to be heard by the Supreme Court itself in the near future.
If the court rules in favor of NJ, then it might not be long before the number of NFL gamblers skyrockets.