Oh, good grief! 

There's no evidence the NFL is fixed / rigged / scripted.

Now and then, while reading comments in public forums, I see someone making the claim the National Football League is fixed.  Instead of the word "fixed" they often also use "rigged" or "scripted."  To clarify, the person is claiming the outcome of NFL games are pre-determined and known in advance.

Good grief.  Seriously?

How can anyone believe this?  I just don't understand it.  There's absolutely no evidence at all this is true.  None.  Zero.  (Of course, if you have actual evidence to the contrary, please submit it to the proper channels, so it can be peer-reviewed.  Thanks.)

The time to believe in something, anything at all, is after there is evidence and a valid justification to warrant that belief.  Not before.  There is absolutely no valid justification to believe the outcome of NFL games are planned in advance.

Who's aware of this rigging? The head coaches? The assistant coaches? The coaches on all of the teams or just a few of them?

Are the NFL owners aware the games are scripted?  Are all of the owners aware of it or just a few of them?  Are the players themselves in on it?  Are all players aware of it?  If not all of them, which ones are excluded? Are the sportscasters aware of it?  (Note that many sportscasters are former NFL players.)

Are the referees in on this rigging?  All of them or just a select few of them?  Which referees?

What about the several thousands of people employed by the NFL? Are they aware of the rigging? Are all of these employees aware of this or just a few of them?  If just a few, which ones... and who makes that determination?

Are all of the NFL games rigged/scripted or just some of the games? Who decides which games are to be scripted?

When is this decision made?  The night before each game?  The week before?  Before each season even begins?

There must now be hundreds if not thousands of legal sportsbooks around the world, most of which operate independently from one another? Are they all aware of the script?  If not all of them, which ones?

How long has this rigging of games been going on? Three years?  Five years? Ten? Twenty?

And maybe most importantly, how is the "script" passed on to all of those people who need to know about it?  Via e-mails?  Phone calls?  Word of mouth? Text messages? How come none of this correspondence has ever surfaced?

How come not one person has ever come forward with any actual evidence for this rigging?  Wouldn't actual evidence for a scripted league be worthy of a Pulitzer Prize?  How come not one person who is in on the fix hasn't come clean?

How come so many people seem to be in on it and aware of it... but no one is ever able to take advantage of these known outcomes?

If I asked these questions to a dozen different people, I bet you I would get a dozen different answers.  The reason for so many different answers is that everyone has a different idea as to what is true.  No one has any actual evidence to support any of their answers or their belief.  If they did, all of the answers would be exactly the same.

"What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence."   (Christopher Hitchens)


If you believe the claim the NFL is rigged, it's based upon ignorance.   It's based upon personal incredulity"Look!  He dropped that pass!  How could he do that?  I can't imagine any other reason... therefore the game must be rigged!"  It's all about the money!  It's all about entertainment!  Why would they not want to rig the games?

Personal incredulity is not the proper way to come to a conclusion about something.  And that's certainly not how to demonstrate something is true.

How can people believe in things without a valid justification?  I really don't understand it.  It makes absolutely no sense to me. 

I don't know about you, but I want to believe as many true things and as few false things as possible.  If you don't need to wait an hour after eating before you should go swimming, I don't want to believe you need to wait.  If you swallow your chewing gum, I don't want to believe it will sit in your stomach for seven years if that is not true. 

One should strive to believe in things that are demonstrably true.

If you believe the players themselves are in on it, and if you happen to find youself sitting in an airplane next to, for example, Troy Aikman, and if he denies your claim, are you going to call him a liar, right to his face?  How would you like it if someone accused you of misconduct at your job... with no evidence at all to support their claim?

I get it.  Referees make mistakes.  And yes, some of these mistakes are going to come late in the game, when the outcome might still be in doubt.

There are well over 100 plays in most all NFL games.  Some games see as many as 150 plays. Multiply that by 16 games a week, for 17 weeks. That's a lot of plays.  You don't think the the refs are capable of missing a penalty?  (They don't have the benefit of instant replay and must make an instant decision on their call.)

You don't think players are capable of dropping passes?  You don't think players are capable of fumbling the ball... especially when eleven opposing players are doing their best to take that ball away from him?  Could you as a player or an official do any better?  If so, why aren't you an NFL player or an NFL referee?  Have you ever made a mistake at YOUR job?

How is a bad call or a dropped pass or an untimely fumble or a game that lands just on or off of the pointspread in any way evidence the game is rigged?  (It's not. I've seen dropped passes and untimely fumbles and missed calls by referees in high school games.  If a dropped pass or an untimely funble is evidence the game is rigged, then according to that logic, high school games must be rigged too.

And yes, I get it.  The NFL is about making a profit.  Most businesses are.  But since when does making a profit need to include a scripted game?

I'll say it again. The time to believe in something, anything at all, is after there is sufficient evidence and justification to warrant that belief. Not before.

If there is no evidence for leprechauns or fairies or pink unicorns, there is no valid reason to believe these things exist.

There might be gold nuggets the size of my fist buried in my backyard.  But if there is no evidence supporting this belief, there's no valid reason to believe it is true.

There might be a teapot named Russell (Russell's teapot) orbiting the Sun in between the orbits of Earth and Mars, that is just too small to be seen with our telescopes.  But until there is actual evidence for such an object, there is no valid reason to believe it exists.


As often the case, conspiracy theorists have it completely backwards.  Yes, they have it backwards!  The reason why the NFL (and betting on the NFL) is such a big business, is because the game is not fixed or scripted!

There are not millions of dollars being wagered on, for example, Pro Wrestling, because those matches are scripted and planned in advance.  We have actual evidence for this.  The reason why sportsbooks are able to accept wagers on NFL games, often large wagers, is because they know the game is not scripted. 

The amount wagered on NFL games would drop to almost nothing, if the game was truly fixed/scripted.  What sportsbook would take a large bet?

Conspiracy theorists also seem to love enjoy bringing up the fact that the NFL classifies themselves as "entertainment."  They seem to believe this gives them the "legal right" to "fix" games.

Good grief.  How they might choose to classify themselves doesn't indicate they are scripting the outcomes... or that it's desirable to do so... or that it's possible to do so on the level suggested by most.

Actually, it's much, much more entertaining when the outcome of a sporting contest is not known or scripted.  Have you ever watched a replay of a sporting event when you already knew the result? It was not nearly as exciting, was it?

Have you watched the emotion of the players and coaches on the sidelines, in a closely contested game? Most people aren't good enough actors to fake that.  Do you really believe all of the coaches and players already know the outcome... and are simply acting on the field?  Again, good grief.

The nature of the game itself lends to a lot of drama. That's why football has been popular at the high school, college, and pro levels, for what... more than 100 years, and counting.

Conspiracy theorists also love to claim it's all about the money.  It's all about making a profit.

Sure, the NFL, like most businesses, is intent on making a profit.  And apparently, according to those that think the game is scripted, the NFL would not be nearly as profitable if it were played without a script, if it were played on the level.  The games, according to them, must be scripted to generate excitement and revenue.


Okay, if you believe that, demonstrate that.  Demonstrate to me how an honest league that was not scripted would have fewer close games, fewer exciting finishes, rather than just asserting it. 

As I mentioned a moment ago, as its currently played, the game of football leads to a lot of drama and excitement.  You don't need or desire any kind of a script.. at any level of the game.

You might not have any morals, but many NFL players (most?) would absolutely not put up with any kind of a script.  They would simply refuse to comply.

How would you like to be really, really good at something, and to be able to perform this task for eight or more years, from high school through college, and then be fortunate enough to be drafted into the pros... only to find out you no longer will be able to perform this task you are so good at... because... surprise! The league is fixed!  You are now an actor.

I, as a player, would not stand for it... and I supect many NFL players would agree.

If you believe the NFL is fixed / rigged /scripted, why do you believe this?  What is the reason for your belief?  Whatever that reason is, I can guarantee you it's not a good reason.  Your reason is not based upon a valid foundation.  It's certainly not based upon evidence.  It's based upon nothing but ignorance and personal incredulity.

For every exciting Super Bowl than you can say must have been scripted, I can show you just as many Super Bowls that were one-sided, dull, and boring.  What kind of a script is that?

For every exciting finish of any game, I can provide an equal number of games that were over long before the fourth quarter ended.  What kind of a scipt is that? 

What kind of a script gives so many Super Bowl victories to Tom Brady and the Patriots?  Why not spread the glory around a bit? 

What kind of a script has marquee players like Aaron Rodgers or Dak Prescott going down with injuries early in the season?

You know, we have actual evidence, from numerous sources, that man went to the moon, several times.  And yet despite this actual, physical evidence, we have many thousands (tens of thousands?) of people who still don't believe it.  They either don't understand the evidence or simply refuse to accept it.  And note that we have zero evidence NFL games are pre-determined or fixed... and yet we have many thousands (tens of thousands?) of people who despite this, do believe it's true.

Good grief.  What happened to critical thinking in our society?

In our society, especially in our judicial system, the burden of proof is on the one making the claim.  For example, if the prosecution claims a man is gulity, the burden of proof is on them to prove their case.  If they fail to do so, one must return a verdict of not guilty.  Not guilty does not mean innocent.  We don't make a determination on whether a person is guilty or innoncent.  We determine if they are guilty or not guilty. 

In fact, the defense doesn't even have to put up any kind of a defense at all.  They can sit and do nothing but twiddle their thumbs.  And yet if the prosecution hasn't determined guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, the returned verdict must be one of not guilty.

That's exactly what we have here.  The burden of proof is on the one making the claim.  If you claim the NFL is fixed / rigged / scripted / predetermined, then it is up to you to demonstrate that.  Prove it.

If you are unable to do so, one can and should reject that claim.

"Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence."  (Carl Sagan)

The more unlikely a certain claim is, given existing evidence on the subject, the greater the standard of proof that is expected of it.

And yet we no evidence at all that the NFL stages/scripts games, let alone extraordinary evidence.

Pick any NFL game... any at all, from any time period, and demonstrate to me the final outcome, and the way that outcome was obtained, could simply NOT have occurred without a so-called script.

I'll wait.


Even ChatGPT agrees there is no evidence.

Question:  Is the NFL rigged?

No, there is no credible evidence to suggest that the NFL (National Football League) is rigged. The outcomes of games are determined by the performance of the teams and players on the field, and the league follows strict rules and regulations to ensure fair competition. Conspiracy theories about sports leagues being rigged are not supported by factual evidence and are often baseless.

Question:  Are NFL games scripted?

There is no evidence to support the claim NFL games are scripted. NFL games are highly regulated and closely monitored to ensure fair play and competition. The outcomes of games are determined by the performance of the players and teams on the field, as well as the decisions made by coaches and officials. While there may be occasional controversies or disputed calls, there is no evidence to suggest the league orchestrates the results of games. The NFL's integrity is crucial to its success and credibility, and any evidence of scripting or manipulation would severely undermine the league's reputation.