Title: Exploring fantasy football's impact on the NFL experience during the COVID-19 pandemic

Authors: Alan D. Smith

Addresses: Department of Marketing, Robert Morris University, Pittsburgh, PA 15219-3099, USA

Abstract: Fantasy gamers have seen a type of coexistence and symbiotic relations with NFL fandom, even in sight of the COVID-19 pandemic and unstable NFL contest schedules. Based on a sample of highly active and self-identifies fantasy gamers, some of these complex interactions were examined in the Pittsburgh, PA metropolitan area on a number of demographic and intrinsic/extrinsic motivation variables derived primarily from the uses and gratification theory. Younger fantasy players were not more active than their slightly older counterparts, which may point to a stable/rich fan base for both forms of football. As expected, males had significantly higher levels of participation and more confidence in their skill level; this was especially true in fantasy gamers favouring NFL engagement when fantasy football players appear on the roster of their favourite NFL teams. Higher levels of fandom and satisfaction for the NFL were found to coexist with higher levels of fantasy gaming.

Keywords: consumer behaviour; COVID-19; fantasy football; National Football League; NFL; uses and gratification theory.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPMB.2022.125868

International Journal of Process Management and Benchmarking, 2022 Vol.12 No.6, pp.785 - 817

Received: 18 Nov 2020
Accepted: 05 Jan 2021

Published online: 30 Sep 2022 *

Full-text access for editors Full-text access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article