NFL suspends player for betting on league games

Business News

Josh Shaw has been suspended indefinitely for betting on NFL games on multiple occasions this season, the first time in more than 35 years a player has been banned for gambling.

A league investigation found no information that Shaw, who hasn’t played this season because of a shoulder injury, used inside information or compromised any games.

The league said it found no evidence that teammates, coaches or other players were aware of Shaw betting on games.

“The continued success of the NFL depends directly on each of us doing everything necessary to safeguard the integrity of the game and the reputations of all who participate in the league,” commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. “At the core of this responsibility is the longstanding principle that betting on NFL games, or on any element of a game, puts at risk the integrity of the game, damages public confidence in the NFL, and is forbidden under all circumstances. If you work in the NFL in any capacity, you may not bet on NFL football.”

Shaw may petition for reinstatement on or after Feb. 21.

Shaw is only the fourth NFL player suspended for betting. The highest-profile case was in 1963 when Paul Hornung of the Packers and Alex Karras of the Lions were banned for the season. They never bet against their teams and usually bet $100. Both were reinstated the following season, and Hornung went on to make the Hall of Fame.

In the most recent case, Baltimore Colts quarterback Art Schlichter was suspended in 1983 for betting on NFL games and other sporting events. Schlichter bet so much, including his entire $350,000 signing bonus, that he couldn’t pay off his bookies. He didn’t bet on Colts games. He, too, was reinstated the following year.