The alliance of sports and cryptocurrency is all set for an entertaining development. With high user engagement observed in live streaming of video games and in dedicated fan following of players, a blockchain project is opening up to National Football League (NFL) players. The NFL Players Association, the union for NFL athletes, has announced a partnership with a blockchain startup that will allow its players to host content and earn revenue through the decentralized platform.

The deal involves NFLPA acquiring a minority stake in SportsCastr, a live streaming platform that enables users, fans or athletes to act as sportscasters to cover live sporting events. Launched by the creators of the FanChain token, SportsCastr aims to emerge as a decentralized sports entertainment ecosystem and reward users for producing and hosting content based on audience engagement.

As a part of the collaboration and stake purchase, NFLPA “plans to encourage its members to provide commentary, live streams and other content for the FanChain platform, thereby earning revenue for themselves outside the games they play,” reports CoinDesk.

Exclusive NFL-Based Content

Through this initiative, past and present NFL players will be able to join the SportsCastr platform and create their own dedicated channels to provide live commentary on games, and by creating other unique content that can be hosted on the platform. Depending on audience engagement and the subscription numbers attracted by the player's content, they will be able to earn monetary rewards in the form of FanChain tokens. The platform also enable fans to directly pay tokens to the NFL players of their choice. Additionally, the platform supports subscription-only channels with a paywall, allowing only paying users and fans to access the content offered by the NFL players.

The ecosystem will facilitate FanChain tokens to be “used to unlock premium NFL player content (such as backstage access), purchase sports tickets or merchandise, and send virtual gifts to NFL players,” among other token-based perks, reports BitsOnline.

While the initiative is currently open to football players, it may be expanded later to bring in representatives from other sports, NFLPA vice president of business and legal affairs Casey Schwab told CoinDesk. "We're not limiting it to any sports. It's really about engaging all athletes," he said. The players will be allowed to comment, discuss and cover games from sports outside their own.

A New Sports Ecosystem

The first NFL player commentators are expected to go live on the SportsCastr platform during Q3, which will also mark the start of this year’s NFL season.

SportsCastr was selected after months of consideration as the NFLPA was looking for a blockchain-based startup that offered a whole ecosystem. "They are building an entire universe. To use an analogy, they're not just building the video game, they're building the video game, the console, the outlets [and] the television. That's a big endeavor," Schwab said. (See also: NBA's Sacramento Kings Are Mining Ethereum.)

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