NFL updates players’ gambling policy and reinstates two players

October 2, 2023
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Players betting on NFL games will now be given a one-year minimum suspension, while players betting on non-NFL games from an NFL facility will only receive a two-game ban for a first offense.

The National Football League (NFL) and its associated Players Association (NFLPA) have recently reviewed and updated the gambling policy for players. This will increase penalties for players who bet on NFL games, reduce penalties for bets on other sports and reinstate two players who were previously suspended for breaking betting-related rules.

Jameson Williams, Detroit Lions receiver who previously stated he was unaware he’d broken the policy by betting on non-NFL games while at an NFL facility, will be reinstated. Tennessee Titans offensive lineman, Nicholas Petit-Frere, will also return to the NFL after committing the same policy violation.

In April, five NFL players including Williams were suspended for gambling-related activity (some on NFL games, some from NFL facilities), which led to an education campaign for players headed by quarterback, Tom Brady in early June. By June 30, however, four more NFL players were suspended — three for betting on NFL games, while Petit-Frere marked the fourth.

NFL Insider Tom Pelissero stated that Williams and Petit-Frere would finish their suspensions today. The NFL and NFLPA released a joint statement saying, “The NFL periodically reviews the gambling policy in consultation with the NFLPA and clubs to ensure it is responsive to changing circumstances and fully addresses this commitment.”

Now, if an NFL player should be on an NFL game, this will incur an indefinite suspension with a one-year minimum, or two-year minimum if the player bets on their own team. Any match fixing attempts or successes will see a player permanently banned, while inside information or third-party proxy betting will also involve a minimum one-year suspension.

Betting on other sports from within NFL facilities has reduced the workplace infraction from a six-game suspension without pay to a two-game suspension without pay for first-time offenders. Williams and Petit-Frere will be the only players who will currently benefit from the policy change.

A six-game suspension without pay will now be for a second infraction, while a minimum one-year suspension without pay will be used for a third offense.

Gambling Insider’s Sports Betting Focus recently explored the topic of whether professional athletes should be allowed to wager on sports in further depth with sports betting expert, Geoff Zochodne.

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