As has previously been pointed out, Tom Brady appears to be very bored with life without the NFL and has been doing everything in his power to stay involved with the league he no longer plays in. So, when NFL commissioner Roger Goodell or one of his many minions reached out to the 45-year-old former quarterback and asked for his help with an ongoing league problem, Brady was probably more than happy to make himself available.
The problem the NFL is having is that players who play in the NFL apparently don’t realize they can’t bet on the NFL. That’s a big problem for the league because the only thing keeping pro football from being pro wrestling is that fans believe the outcomes of games are undecided before kickoff. Without that belief, wagering on pro football is all over.
The NFL, which may have generated as much as $100 billion in legal bets last season and has lucrative partnerships with a wide range of gambling-related entities, does not want wagering on pro football to go anywhere, so the league has enlisted Brady to make some PSA-style educational videos about the NFL’s stance on gambling.
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That stance is pretty simple: If you are one of the NFL’s 3,000 or so players or one of the league’s 17,000 employees, be it a water girl, chain holder or team executive, you can’t bet on football, ever. That simple message has not been received by a number of players, most recently Indianapolis Colts cornerback and kick returner Isaiah Rodgers.
Rodgers, a former sixth-round pick in the final year of a four-year contract, reportedly made around 100 bets in the $25-$50 range, including on Colts games, over an undisclosed amount of time. The news about Rodgers comes on the heels of the NFL suspending Quintez Cephus and C.J. Moore of the Detroit Lions and Shaka Toney of the Washington Commanders, indefinitely for betting on NFL games in the 2022 season and Stanley Berryhill and Jameson Williams of the Lions for the team’s first six regular season games of the 2023 season for the same violation.
Hence, Brady’s involvement.
“According to a league source, Brady taped an introduction to the league’s gambling educational video that is to be shown by every team,” per 9News. “In his video message, Brady — widely considered the greatest quarterback, and therefore the greatest player, in NFL history — talks about his love of football and how the opportunity to play in the NFL was a privilege of a lifetime. He then says betting on NFL games hurts the integrity of the league and the reputation of everyone on your team and it’s just not worth it. Brady concludes his message by imploring players to do the right thing and follow the league’s guidelines on gambling, which will be explained shortly, to help the NFL continue to be the greatest league in the world.”
Brady’s message may have some impact, but the NFL permanently booting Rodgers out of the league (which hasn’t happened yet) will probably make a bigger impression and affect how players treat gambling on pro football moving forward.