Source: NFL objects to fantasy football event

The NFL is threatening to fine or suspend players involved in a fantasy football convention in Las Vegas, according to a source.

The NFL was preparing to take on more than one player at a time if the latest dust-up escalated between the NFL and a contingent of players that are involved in the National Fantasy Football Convention (NFFC).

As battles with Tom Brady, Adrian Peterson and the NFL Players Association continue with the league over disciplinary issues, a contingent of players involved with the NFFC are planning to fight the league on another matter. The NFL is telling those players, a group that includes Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, that they can’t be part of the fantasy football convention that was contracting with them.

The NFL is claiming they can’t be involved in the convention because of its involvement with a casino, according to a source, but the event was actually scheduled to take place at the Sands Expo in Las Vegas, which doesn’t have a gaming license.

The NFL Player Association is aware of the issue. The league has known about the convention since late last year, the source said, but waited until now to raise its objections.

The NFL was telling players and family members they could be fined or suspended if they attend the event, the source said.

The NFFC issued a statement on its website Friday evening announcing the postponement of the event and plans to hold it in Los Angeles next year.

“It’s with incredibly heavy hearts that we announce to you that we will be postponing the National Fantasy Football Convention, as we no longer feel comfortable and confident in delivering on our intent, ambitions and opportunities for fans,” the message read. “This is a direct result of sudden and unexpected opposition taken by the NFL concerning player participation and their perceived association with gambling for an event in Las Vegas.”

Romo wanted to use the platform as a way for fans to meet the players. More than 100 current and former players – including Jamaal Charles, Antonio Brown, Dez Bryant, DeMarco Murray, T.Y. Hilton, Emmanuel Sanders, Randall Cobb, Eddie Lacy, Julio Jones and DeMarcus Ware – were contracted to attend.

Romo was scheduled to be the co-producer for the event that was scheduled to begin July 10, but with just over a month to go, the NFL was fighting the players’ ability to be involved with the non-NFL-sanctioned event. The NFL, of course, runs its own fantasy football operations.

About a dozen media personalities, many of them in the fantasy football business, were also involved in the event, including Michael Fabiano of the league-owned NFL Network and NFL.com. The NFL initially approved his contract for the event months ago but recently changed course there as well.


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