The NFL is getting closer to being in the gaming business.
Caesars Entertainment Corporation, the owner of Baltimore's Horseshoe Casino, has been chosen by the NFL to be its first-ever official casino sponsor.
It is the latest example of a combination of casino gambling and a professional sports league in the United States. In May of last year, the Supreme Court issued a ruling that allows states to legalize sports betting.
ESPN is reporting that the NBA, NHL and Major League Baseball have made deals with MGM Resorts International, which were more centered on actual sports betting; MGM sportsbooks will use league data from those partners in their bookmaking operations. The deal between the NFL and Caesars Entertainment does not include data sharing.
In October, the Horseshoe Casino Baltimore announced it was entering into a partnership with the Baltimore Ravens. The casino sits several blocks from M & T Bank Stadium in South Baltimore.
That agreement allows the casino to use the Ravens name and logo inside of the facility. The Horseshoe Baltimore’s three-level bar is being transformed into a Baltimore Ravens branded bar.
The new announcement from Caesars and the NFL came in a news release on Thursday, in which Caesars promised to provide “unique experiences for NFL fans by using its casino properties, celebrity chefs, premier music artists and a wide range of entertainment elements.”
Caesars will have the exclusive right to use NFL trademarks in the United States and the United Kingdom to promote Caesars casino properties and activate at key NFL events including the Super Bowl and NFL Draft.
The partnership officially starts with the 2019 NFL playoffs, which begin this weekend.
“We couldn’t be more excited to work with one of the world’s largest gaming and entertainment companies,” said Renie Anderson, Senior Vice President, NFL Partnerships, Sponsorship and Consumer Products. “Combining the NFL with Caesars’ expertise in world class entertainment will provide our fans unique experiences both here in the United States and abroad.”
“All of us at Caesars Entertainment are thrilled to be the first-ever casino partner of the NFL, the most prominent sports league in North America,” said Mark Frissora, President and CEO of Caesars Entertainment. “Combining the league’s 180 million fans with our 55 million Total Rewards loyalty program members will expose millions of people to the exclusive and exciting year-round opportunities at our properties.”
The October agreement made the Ravens one of seven NFL teams that already have a partnership with Caesars Entertainment, along with the Falcons, Bears, Colts, Saints, Raiders and Eagles. The news release states, “These partnerships, along with the new League deal, are for the Casino category only and do not include sports betting, daily fantasy or hotels/resorts.”