NFL Sports Betting Action Has Never Been Higher, Says GeoComply

Written By J.R. Duren on September 13, 2023
Detroit Lions Wide Receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown Celebrates Touchdown At NFL Game with NFL and GeoComply logos

America loves to bet on NFL football and that enthusiasm doesn’t seem like it’s going to slow down.

That’s the conclusion of a report from geolocation and security firm GeoComply, which revealed this week that sports betting activity from Sept. 2 to Sept. 10 was up 56% over the same period in 2022.

The company noted its research results posted on the GeoComply website:

“As the most popular sports league in the US, the start of the NFL season is one of the most important times of the year for online sports betting operators. With new state markets open and bettors finally able to wager on their favorite NFL teams, fan engagement and regulated sportsbook activity has never been higher.”

First week of NFL season produces staggering sports betting numbers

The NFL season is the linchpin of sports betting revenue in the United States. Online sports betting operators generate roughly 60% of their revenue from the NFL season, according to GeoComply.

And those sportsbooks saw some incredible numbers this past week that should make them optimistic about the 2023 season:

  • There were 242.3 million geolocation transactions during the first week of the season, up more than 80 million compared to the same timeframe in 2022.
  • 1.1 million new sports betting accounts were created, up 40% over 2022.
  • After Amon-Ra St. Brown scored the first touchdown of the season against the Chiefs, betting boomed at a clip of 4,200 transactions per second.
Source: GeoComply. From the Sidelines to the Mainstream

New markets get millions of transactions and a bump in new users

Ohio, Maryland, and Massachusetts, three states that launched sports betting this year, saw a nice bump in new accounts, according to GeoComply.

  • Ohio gained 133,000 new sports betting accounts
  • Maryland got 61,000 new customers
  • Massachusetts saw 59,000 new accounts created

Those three states combined for more than 40 million transactions from more than 1.6 million accounts.

GeoComply says some states are missing out on $320 million in tax revenue

The sports wagering data from the first week of the NFL season should be more than enough motivation for states without legal sports betting to get moving on legalizing it, GeoComply CEO Anna Sainsbury said.

Sainsbury noted that, because consumers know that regulated sports betting offers a standard of fairness, states should be eager to adopt sports betting legislation, as legalization often grabs considerable market share from offshore sportsbooks and other operations that are illegal in the US.

Sainsbury said in a press release about GeoComply’s NFL 2023: Week One report:

“While the increase in our transaction volume emphasizes the appetite for regulated online sports betting, our data also accentuates an urgent call to action. States without regulated online sports betting should get off the legalization sidelines and unlock their ability to protect consumers and generate significant tax revenue.”

GeoComply zeroed in on six states that are considering sports betting legalization:

  1. Alabama
  2. Georgia
  3. Minnesota
  4. Mississippi
  5. Missouri
  6. South Carolina

Those six states had more than one million geolocations checks (users trying to log into legal sports betting sites) and 53,000 legal sportsbook accounts.

Based on those figures, GeoComply estimated that the six states are missing out on more than $320 million in annual tax revenue. Of those six states, Georgia is missing out on the most tax revenue: $89 million per year, according to GeoComply.

Source: GeoComply. From the Sidelines to the Mainstream
Photo by Charlie Riedel / AP Photo; illustrated by PlayUSA
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J.R. Duren

J.R. Duren has covered the gambling beats for more than a dozen states for Catena Media since 2015. His past reporting experience includes two years at the Villages Daily Sun, and he is a first-place winner at the Florida Press Club Excellence in Journalism Contest.

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