Giants, Jets, Bills Sign Letter Outlining Concerns Over New York Sports Betting

Posted on: May 16, 2019, 11:37h. 

Last updated on: May 16, 2019, 11:37h.

It’s not unusual that professional sports teams would want to weigh in on the future of New York sports betting. On the other hand, you might expect those teams to actually be located in the state.

New York sports betting
The Jets and Giants joined the Bills in signing a letter from the NFL expressing concerns over a New York sports betting bill, though they actually play in New Jersey. (Image: Jeff Zelevansky/Getty)

The Buffalo Bills, New York Giants, and New York Jets all signed on to a letter from the NFL that expressed concerns over the future of sports betting in New York, despite the fact that the Giants and Jets actually play in New Jersey.

NFL Outlines Core Principles for Sports Betting

Not only that, but those two teams play out of MetLife Stadium, an arena that’s part of the same Meadowlands Sports Complex that houses the FanDuel Sportsbook – the most successful sportsbook in New Jersey.

That said, the letter was primarily written from the perspective of the NFL itself, though executives from all three teams – each of which, of course, does have a sizable fan base in New York – signed on to the submission as well. The letter was submitted to the New York State Racing, Gaming and Wagering Committee last week.

“There is no greater priority for the NFL than protecting the integrity of our sport and the welfare of our players,” the letter reads. “Fans, players, coaches and personnel deserve to know that we are doing everything possible to ensure no improper influences affect how our games are played and that we are taking all appropriate steps to ensure that their participation in our games is not subjected to unfair and unwarranted allegations relating to sports betting.”

The letter outlines “four core standards” that the NFL would like to see in any New York sports betting bill. Some of those are unlikely to cause controversy: everyone is on board with legalizing sports betting including strong consumer protections, for instance, and it makes sense that “eliminating the illegal sports betting marketplace” would be a part of setting up a new, regulated environment.

The other two standards, however, are more about protecting the league’s interests. The letter asks for the “protection of our content and intellectual property,” and also asks for the use of official league data – a common talking point from sports leagues when lobbying for changes to legislation across the country.

“An essential component of consumer protection is a requirement that the information used to settle these wagers is correct and timely, something that can only come from official data provided by the sports leagues themselves,” the letter read.

New York Sports Betting Bill Advances

On Monday, the New York Senate Racing, Gaming, and Wagering Committee advanced a sports betting bill unanimously, meaning it will next be taken up by the Senate Finance Committee.

However, that vote didn’t come without reservations, with some committee members wondering why the horse racing industry wasn’t included in the expansion of New York sports betting.

“To say that you can help them later, I’m just not sure how because what share is left for them at that point when everything is up and running,” said state senator Daphne Jordan (R-43rd District). “What I’d really like to see is a plan to include those other entities and not three years from now.”