Sports gambling is set to become active in Maryland later in 2021 after Gov. Larry Hogan signed a bill into law on May 18.

However, for the over 6-million residents of Maryland, it’s not exactly clear when they will be able to make their first wager. State legislators, though, have expressed a desire to have some levels of sports gambling in place come fall, just in time for college football and the NFL.

The legislation grants in-person gambling licenses to six casinos across the state, which includes the stadiums of the Baltimore Orioles, Ravens, and Washington Football Team. In addition to the in-person locations, sports bettors will have an opportunity to place bets through online betting apps, like DraftKings and FanDuel.

“I’m particularly proud that we will sign legislation that opens up opportunities in the industry of sports betting to minorities and women,”

Adrienne A. Jones said, a Baltimore Country Democrat.

One of the goals of the sports betting legislation is to help businesses to participate in the sports betting world. Businesses, including bingo halls, will eventually be able to support a sports-betting license. This also extends to small businesses, which means fewer than 25 total employees and less than $3 million dollars in sales.

The combination of sports stadiums and small businesses will create about 100 total sports betting licenses across the state. Maryland intends to have goals for the companies to win sports gambling licenses, particularly businesses owned by women and minorities. With the nearly 100 licenses across the state, economic activity is expected to increase — a welcome thing as COVID appears to really be reaching a turning point.

“It’s funny to be here without masks on,”

senate president Bill Ferguson said.

“We can feel the aftertimes of this pandemic.”

In November 2020, Maryland voters overwhelmingly voted in favor of legalizing sports gambling across the state. That left the state legislature to put the wording into place with more specific regulations.

Tax revenue from sports gambling companies is expected to be around 15% of their total proceeds, which is going to go mostly to public education across the state. It is estimated that Maryland could generate more than $15-million-dollars per year in revenue when all of the licenses are up and running across the state.

Bettings lines to keep an eye on in Maryland

The Ravens have won two of the last three AFC North division titles and have made it to the playoffs in each of the last three years. According to DraftKings, the Ravens are +125 to win the AFC North this fall, with both the Browns and Steelers destined to be their biggest competition.

With the NFL schedule moving to 17 games this year, the Ravens 11 win over/under may seem like a good thing to place a wager on. Baltimore is -125 to win at least 12 games, but are also +100 to win less than 11 games.

For as good as the Ravens have been in the last decade, Washington’s team hasn’t experienced much of the same success. However, Washington has +300 odds to win the NFC East this season — a division many people expect to be wide open heading into the NFL season.

Washington’s over/under win total of eight wins this season is set at +160, but as a product offseason, the Football Team could be in line to surpass the eight wins. Ryan Fitzpatrick is expected to lead the Washington offense while Antonio Gibson will receive a majority of carries. The strongest point of Washington’s roster though is the defensive line, headlined by second-year pass rusher Chase Young.

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