Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The NFL revealed Monday that Atlanta Falcons broad receiver Calvin Ridley hasactually been suspended forever and will missouton at least the totality of the 2022 season for wagering on videogames this past season. 

Per the league’s press release, Ridley bet on videogames in November while he was away from the group:

Mike Garafolo @MikeGarafolo

Full release on Calvin Ridley’s suspension pic.twitter.com/MXgyZqaJfE

“We were veryfirst made conscious of the league’s examination on Feb. 9,” the Falcons said in a declaration. “We have complied completely with the examination giventhat getting notification and assistance the league’s findings and actions. We are moving forward in the 2022 season with the choice that was made. With the choice that was made by the NFL, any evenmore concerns on the examination needto be directed to the league workplace.”

Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter

Multiple NFL groups reached out to the Falcons in current weeks to inquire about trading for Calvin Ridley, and each time, Atlanta decreased to gointo into any talks out of great faith, understanding the problems in shop for their standout large receiver, per sources.

The NFL’s Mike Garafolo reported Ridley was making parlay bets, and ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the wideout bet on the Falcons to win as a part of those parlays:

Andrew Siciliano @AndrewSiciliano

Ridley positioned parlay bets on NFL videogames utilizing his cell phone, per @MikeGarafolo.

Michael David Smith @MichaelDavSmith

On NFL Network @MikeGarafolo stated Calvin Ridley’s bets were parlays, and that was a aspect in the league thinking his claim that he had no inside info impacting his bets. Presumably if he had inside details he’d bet simply on that group, not on parlays with several groups.

Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter

NFL figuredout that Calvin Ridley put multi-legged parlay bets including 3, 5 and 8 videogames that consistedof the Falcons to win, per source. Investigation figuredout there was no participation from any group gamers, coach etc. put through his mobile gadget out of state.

Albert Breer @AlbertBreer

So how did Calvin Ridley get busted? He was in Florida, and utilized the just gaming app legal in the state. The app informed a compliance business the NFL has employed called Genius for this kind of thing.

That he was out of state was a aspect in Ridley’s activity being flagged.

Ridley tweeted that he bet a overall of $1,500:

CALVIN RIDLEY @CalvinRidley1

I bet 1500 overall I wear’t have a betting issue

CALVIN RIDLEY @CalvinRidley1

I couldn’t even watch football at that point

CALVIN RIDLEY @CalvinRidley1

Just gone be more healthy when I come back

Ridley stepped away from the Falcons on Oct. 31, stating he was focusing on his psychological wellness. He did not return for the rest of the season, and the Falcons put him on the NFI list.

CALVIN RIDLEY @CalvinRidley1

pic.twitter.com/q7OOoAKkdV

Ridley’s suspension will naturally put the NFL’s relationship with Caesars Entertainment, DraftKings and FanDuel under the microscopiclense, all gaming entities.

Professional sports leagues like the NFL had distanced themselves from betting throughout their history, however with the introduction of online wagering and day-to-day dream, most expert leagues have accepted the practice for fans and established collaborations with those websites.  

Jonathan Jones @jjones9

This Calvin Ridley suspension has huge implications as the NFL continues its relationships with sports wagering partners. A suspension of at least one season is a message to everybody.

Stewart Mandel @slmandel

In all severity, it’s an fascinating minute. These leagues that for 100+ years villainized sports wagering have now freely accepted it … otherthan they still desire/expect the gamers to have absolutelynothing to do with it. Quite a stabilizing act.

Andrew Brandt @AndrewBrandt

I get it that we can’t have gamers wagering on videogames, specifically their own.
But the ethical high ground suffers a bit when the companies are accepting it and generatingincomefrom its legality.

Jim Trotter @JimTrotter_NFL

And partner in gaming websites.

But it likewise comes simply one month after Pittsburgh Steelers linebackers coach Brian Flores accused Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross in a suit of offering to pay him $100,000 per loss in the 2019 season in an effort to tank for a muchbetter draft choice, back when Flores was the head coach of the group. 

Such claims, along with any gamer wagering on videogames, puts the stability of the sport in concern. 

Read More.