Mims: Denver Bronco Eyioma Uwazurike becomes 10th NFL player suspended for gambling
The NFL is attempting to address a challenge regarding players and sports gambling. While players can gamble in a casino, they are prohibited from wagering on the NFL and being in a sports book during the NFL season. There are several other restrictions that players must abide by to maintain the integrity of the games.
On Tuesday, Eyioma Uwazurike, a defensive lineman for the Denver Broncos was suspended for the entire season for betting on NFL games. He can apply for reinstatement in 2024. Uwazurike is the 10th player suspended this year for gambling on games.
A player betting on games opens a Pandora’s box of questions for the casual fan that places wagers on a game. Did the player’s performance and bet affect a game that he played in or one that the fan bet on. An example is the end of game situation when a player takes a knee when there is an opportunity to score. The score will change the outcome from a betting perspective. The player taking the knee is the intelligent team play because it does not allow the opponent an opportunity to get possession of the ball.
There is a casual fan that wants that score! His perception goes to why the player did not score and that the outcome costs him/her monetary. There is little solace in knowing the correct action was done by the player.
This scenario, and many others involving prop bets, is why players cannot wager on their sport (NFL) and any contest they are playing in.
The question going forward is how to prevent players from engaging in socially acceptable behavior that is openly a part of the game. Educating the players, coaching staff and agents is the first step. The league must engage the teams and players from the beginning of trading camp and periodically during the season.
Here are some of the restrictions that players must follow concerning the gambling policy:
Players cannot participate in Daily Fantasy Football.
Players cannot have other people place a wager on an NFL game for them.
Players cannot gamble at a team facility.