NFL Teams Can Pursue Some Blockchain Deals, but Direct Crypto Promotion Still Banned: Report

Restrictions remain for specific cryptocurrencies and fan tokens that can be exchanged for merchandise and experiences, according to CNBC.

AccessTimeIconMar 22, 2022 at 4:58 p.m. UTC
Updated May 11, 2023 at 4:12 p.m. UTC

The National Football League has granted teams limited permission to seek sponsorships with blockchain companies, though restrictions remain for specific cryptocurrencies and fan tokens that can be exchanged for merchandise and experiences, CNBC reported.

  • “Clubs will continue to be prohibited from directly promoting cryptocurrency,” CNBC reported, citing a memo issued Tuesday by Renie Anderson, the NFL’s chief revenue officer, and Brian Rolapp, the league's chief media and business officer.
  • The memo revealed that the NFL made the decision to allow “promotional relationships without undertaking excessive regulator or brand risk” after it completed an evaluation of the technology, CNBC reported. The permissions are subject to the NFL’s approval and exclude stadium signage.
  • Joe Ruggiero, the NFL’s head of consumer products, told CNBC that any deals struck between teams and blockchain companies would not exceed three years in order to give the league flexibility. He added the NFL could sell its league-wide blockchain rights to a company, as well.
  • CNBC reported in February that the NFL has lobbied the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on “issues related to blockchain technology.”
  • The NFL didn’t immediately respond to CoinDesk’s request for comment.


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Michael Bellusci is CoinDesk's crypto reporter focused on public companies and digital asset firms.