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Cleveland Browns Legend Kosar Dropped as Spokesman after Legally Sports Betting

Written by: Mike Lukas
Updated January 11, 2023
8 min read
  • Former Cleveland Browns QB Bernie Kosar Placed a Wager That Cost Him His Job

  • Sports Betting Now Legal in Ohio as of January 1, but Not for NFL Personnel

  • The Bernie Kosar Show Will Continue to Offer Listeners Sports Betting Tips

Cleveland Browns Kosar

Former Cleveland Browns QB Bernie Kosar Placed a Wager That Cost Him His Job

It probably came as no surprise to Cleveland Browns fans when more off-the-field drama made the headlines as former legendary franchise quarterback Bernie Kosar was dropped by the NFL as a team spokesman, that’s according to Bernie himself in a recent Tweet he posted:


The “Yet once again” part is most likely a sarcastic callback to when the Browns released Kosar during the 1993 season after a Week 10 loss to the Denver Broncos, that move cosigned by HC (at the time) Bill Belichick which apparently still stings the former 2x Pro Bowler.

The reason for the recent dismissal is that Kosar placed a bet on the Cleveland Browns to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 18 when his former team had the chance to eliminate their bitter divisional rivals from the playoffs, something they failed to do with a 14-28 loss.

Kosar reportedly placed a $19,000 bet on the Browns to win which was the first bet made in Ohio with one of his sponsors – Tipico Sportsbook – a wager he lost on two levels with no payout and now no job on the team’s radio program, leaving him “shocked & disappointed.”

Of course, Bernie did nothing illegal, he simply broke the rules of the league.

Since the first of the year, it has been legal to sports gamble in the Buckeye State, but that is against the policy of the NFL for those employed by the league, and Kosar was considered ‘personnel,’ thus the dismissal, a move that the league seemed to do without hesitation.

In a press release, the NFL explained the incident:

“Earlier this week, we notified Bernie that per league policy we were required to remove him from our pregame radio coverage for the season finale after he violated the NFL gambling policy by placing a bet on an NFL game.”

It didn’t matter that according to recent polling of Browns' fans, Bernie Kosar is considered the "most beloved" Browns player in the franchise's history, all due to his play on the field – he posted a 56-51-1 record with the Browns in his career – as wells his role as a Cleveland leader.

Kosar’s motto is “You matter!” and he says it to empower anyone listening to him speak, a habit that further endears him to his fans, a fact that the NFL took into consideration when they made their decision, saying in that same press release:

“We understand what Bernie means to his community and our history but as a team contracted personnel hired to provide content on our media platforms, his bet was a violation of NFL rules, and we must adhere to all NFL policy.”

In some good news for Kosar fans, his show will continue.

The Bernie Kosar Show Will Continue to Offer Listeners Sports Betting Tips

For those who enjoy The Bernie Kosar Show (cohosted by his former teammate Hanford Dixon), it will continue to run weekly on YouTube, that show sponsored by Tipico Sportsbook now with 2.75k subscribers and growing by offering insider football talk and sports betting tips.

This was arguably strict punishment by the NFL, but it does send a clear message to the gambling world that violations of league policy will not be tolerated, a good stance to take given how brand new this U.S. sports betting market still is.

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Mike Lukas

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Mike Lukas is a retired standup comedian turned freelance writer now living in Dallas, Texas, originally from Cleveland, Ohio. His love for the game of football and all things Cleveland Browns turned Mike into a pro blogger years ago. Now Mike enjoys writing about all thirty-two NFL teams, hoping to help football gamblers gain a slight edge in their pursuit of the perfect wager. Email: [email protected]

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