It's been 15 months since the Supreme Court struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, which cleared the way for states to legalize sports betting.
Driving the news: In that time, the number of states with some form of legal sports betting has grown to 13 — and the NFL is slowly warming up to it. This season, the league has a full-fledged casino partner (Caesars) and an official data distributor (Sportradar) for the first time.
The big picture: The NFL's current broadcast rights deals with CBS, NBC, Fox and ESPN all expire in 2022, which could make sports betting a key part of any future negotiations.
- "The value of television, of presenting our games, I dare say it will go up 50% because of [sports betting]," said Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, referencing the fact that people are more likely to watch a game if they bet on it.
- "Gambling boosts future rights fees mostly because the next potential generation of broadcasters (particularly Amazon & Apple) are the best in the world at payment systems ( 1 click, micropayments) and can facilitate on screen betting better than anyone else," tweeted The Action Network's Darren Rovell.
The other side: While sports betting is poised to play a role in the NFL's future, it won't radically reshape how you watch games, at least not this year.
- NBC's telecasts will feature "somewhat isolated" sports betting references, Fox will mention it on-air only "if our announcers can organically work it in," and ESPN execs said there were "no plans to discuss gambling," per NYT.
🎙 Go deeper: On yesterday's Axios Pro Rata Podcast, my colleague Dan Primack discussed the future of legalized sports betting with DraftKings co-founder and CEO Jason Robins. Give it a listen.