The NFL is looking into the possibility that multiple players violated the league’s gambling policy by participating in an arm wrestling event in a Las Vegas casino, a league spokesman confirmed.
The Pro Football Arm Wrestling Championship’s website indicates the event took place from April 5-9 at the MGM Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas and that it will air on CBS in May and June.
According to USA Today, nearly three dozen players were involved with the event, including Steelers LB James Harrison and C Maurkice Pouncey, Dolphins WR Kenny Stills, 49ers LB NaVorro Bowman, Raiders P Marquette King and DE Mario Edwards and Patriots S Patrick Chung.
NFL personnel are prohibited from making promotional appearances at casinos. If found in violation of the league’s policy, they could be eligible for a fine.
"Had we been asked in advance if this was acceptable, we would have indicated that it was in direct violation of the gambling policy," Joe Lockhart, the NFL’s executive vice president of communications, told USA Today. "No one sought pre-approval."
The league says it only recently became aware of the event though the event’s organizer, Alan Brickman, who told USA Today that he had discussions with two different NFL departments in hopes of including the league as a partner.
Half of the $100,000 first place prize will go to charity in the players’ names, per USA Today.
This latest issue comes at a time when plenty of eyes are on the NFL to see how the league deals with gambling in anticipation of the Raiders moving to Las Vegas in several years.