“Players and NFL personnel may not participate in promotional activities or other appearances at or in connection with events that are held at or sponsored by casinos,” an NFL spokesman said Friday in an email statement to FOX Sports.
NFFC organizers decided to cancel their event and are now set to debut next summer in Los Angeles.
The NFL threatened to punish players who showed up at the NFFC because it doesn’t want players to make public appearances at places where gambling might occur. This shouldn’t have been a worry about the NFFC, however, because it was supposed to be held at a rather large convention center that just happened to be owned by a casino.
The NFFC called the NFL’s threats “bullying tactics.”
“The NFL is once again acting like a corporate thug,” NFFC co-counsel Michael K. Hurst said, via Pro Football Talk, “initiating a campaign to intimidate players away from this event because of its potential for success and in order to kill or control any profits.”
In June, PFT reported that the NFL may have been upset that Romo identified a strong alternate revenue stream:
Other points in the NFLPA’s case revolve around the precedent and rules that Brady is being punished for. The NFL policy for equipment puts the responsibility in the hands of team personnel, not players, so the NFLPA plans to argue that the policy doesn’t actually apply to Brady. The lack of rules regarding equipment targeted at players also made the four-game suspension one that came without much precedent.
Furthermore, the NFLPA’s case is expected to include cases of inconsistent applications of the rules. According to the Washington Post, the union will point to a previous slap on the wrist for the Minnesota Vikings for illegally tampering with footballs.