Washington Redskins First NFL Team with Gambling-Focused Telecasts

  • Inspired by the gambling-focused telecasts run by the NBA’s Washington Wizards
  • Same formula will be followed for the Washington Redskins' four preseason games
  • Each telecast will be aired by NBC Sports Washington on their secondary channel
  • A traditional broadcast with no focus on gambling will remain on their main channel
Washington Redskins club equipment with official NFL ball.
The Washington Redskins have become the first NFL team to have a gambling-focused telecast of their games. [Image: Shutterstock]

A first for the NFL

The Washington Redskins have become the first NFL team to offer a gambling-focused telecast during their games.

The three-time Super Bowl champions began offering this telecast option during their first preseason game of the year against Cleveland Browns.

These telecasts give viewers the chance to win cash prizes for correctly predicting in-game outcomes during the preseason. Entry is free and there will be one winner of $1,000 for each quarter of the four preseason games. 

The NBA’s Washington Wizards initially came up with a formula for telecasts that could deliver sports betting content to their audience. The basketball team gave fans the chance to win cash prizes via free-to-play games throughout the NBA season.

the Redskins can only have this type of telecast in place for their four preseason games

However, the Redskins can only have this type of telecast in place for their four preseason games. This is because NBC Sports Washington holds the rights to these games, but not for regular season games. 

The telecast on the main NBC Sports Washington channel will continue to air in a traditional format. The gambling-focused telecast can be viewed on the NBC Sports Washington Plus.

Success to date

A gambling-focused telecast was available for eight of the Wizards games during the recent NBA season. According to the general manager of NBC Sports Washington, Damon Phillips, they recorded excellent ratings and great fan engagement from these telecasts. 

NBC Sports Washington is also eagerly awaiting the beginning of legal sports betting in the district of Washington DC. This will allow them to offer a more interactive experience for their audience. When legal sports betting begins, the television network could partner with a sportsbook and link this in with their broadcasts. 

Phillips believes that the future is here with this type of broadcasting. He believes that they are making the first steps in the right direction at NBC Sports Washington. 

Future plans

Sports betting legalization has already been approved in Washington DC. Mobile and retail sportsbooks will be opening for business, including at the district’s major sporting arenas. 

Delaware and West Virginia are both inside of the viewing region for NBC Sports Washington, and both of these states already have open sportsbooks. Legal sports betting is also close in nearby Virginia and Maryland, with the issue set to go to a public referendum to approve the issue. 

While the NFL was against legalizing sports betting for many years, they recognize that not much can be done now

While the NFL was against legalizing sports betting for many years, they recognize that not much can be done now. They are allowing teams to obtain casino sponsorships and have entered numerous lucrative sponsorships with gambling companies.

The NFL already has Caesars Entertainment on board as the league’s official casino sponsor. This deal is worth about $30m each year to the league, with an initial three-year contract in place.

Other lucrative opportunities exist for the league in terms of the licensing and distribution of exclusive data. According to estimates from the American Gaming Association, the NFL stands to earn additional revenue of about $2.3bn each year when the sports betting market in the country matures. 

The NBA, NHL and MLB have been more embracing of sports betting to date. Therefore, many more teams will be following the lead of the Washington Wizards and Washington Redskins in the near future.