Some would call it a utopia: a Chargers, 49ers, or Rams home game on a beautiful NFL Sunday.
Tacos stashed in an eco-friendly container between the feet, jumbo beer kick-proof under the seat, the fan takes a load off briefly after a pleasing play preceding yet another timeout.
Out comes the phone. Then one of the California sports betting apps and a check on whether odds on the Over are worth a flier.
The scene is legally plausible in 11 states with mobile sports betting and NFL teams. Nine of those — Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee — hosted games in the first two weeks of the season.
And according to GeoComply, the location verification company that assures bettors are within legal jurisdictions, it’s verifiably big business early in the NFL season.
Per GeoComply, more than 10% of those inside stadiums or adjacent tailgating or parking areas interacted with legal sportsbooks during the first two weeks of the NFL season. The data was harvested in a seven-hour period surrounding the games.
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Eagles fans, perhaps enlivened by the play of their team behind quarterback Jalen Hurts, were the most prolific bettors of in-person NFL fandom. There were more than 76,400 location checks of more than 8,000 unique users made in the season opener against Minnesota at Lincoln Financial Field.
Arizona’s State Farm Stadium, which has a BetMGM Sportsbook on the property, in February will host the first Super Bowl in a jurisdiction with legal sports betting underway at the time.
With more than 66,000 location checks at the Cardinals’ season-opener against Kansas City, GeoComply predicted a “betting bonanza” waves of fans and sports tourists descend upon the stadium
Las Vegas will host the Super Bowl in 2024 and New Orleans in 2025, providing plenty of grist for what sports betting tourism can mean to a state economy.
“Seeing data from many of these games that shows more than 10% of NFL fans in stadiums are engaging with licensed sportsbooks is a clear win for states that choose to regulate sports betting,” GeoComply CEO Anna Sainsbury told California Casinos. “This wealth of data is so important for lawmakers and sports leagues to determine sports betting policies in their states and at their stadiums.”
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NFL fans are NFL fans. They can be differentiated by the colors of the jersey, the brand of the beer, and the food. For the Eagles, fans, for example, that’s green, a Prolific and — sigh — a cheesesteak.
Chargers, 49ers, and Rams fans can make their own choices. But it stands to reason that if Prop 27 were to overcome some currently long odds and pass voter muster in November, they’d probably choose to start betting at Levi’s and SoFi stadiums like their compatriots in the East.
For bettors, the chance to make a wager — actually, winning it — would constitute the joy of it.
For state tax authorities, there could be rapture. Prop 27 would take the revenue of sports betting operators at a 10% rate. There would figure to be a lot if fans were betting legally on their phones in California.
- The Chargers, 49ers, and Rams would create 30 combined home games in California every season, nine regular-season and one preseason, or eight and two in alternate seasons.
- California has hosted 13 of 56 Super Bowls.
- SoFi Stadium hosted last season as the Rams won their first Lombardi Trophy in LA.
- Greater Los Angeles has hosted the Super Bowl eight times, surpassed only by Miami (11) and New Orleans (10).
- Though the NFL has not announced the site of the 2026 Super Bowl, Levi’s Stadium has been heavily speculated upon as a venue.
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