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When he was reminded that the Dunder Mifflin Scranton Christmas party was supposed to not involve alcohol, Michael Scott said, “This is Christmas spirit. As in spirits. Booze.”

Now, the NFL has its first ever spirits sponsor.

I’d frankly never before heard of the parent company: Diageo. I have heard of (and purchased many a fifth of) its signature product, Crown Royal Whisky. (Crown Royal Black is the dollar-for-dollar best, and my palate isn’t nearly refined enough to know the difference between top-shelf XR and the considerably cheaper XO.)

Diageo also sells Captain Morgan Rum. The active ingredient in rum and Coke. Also known as the drink Bruce Arians drinks when he’s not drinking.

It’s hardly the NFL’s first foray into the alcohol business. The league has been making bank from beer for a very long time. But the league is now in a little bit deeper with alcoholic beverages by partnering with yet another form of intoxicating substance that, by rule, is banned from all league facilities.

As needle-threading goes, this one won’t be very difficult for the league to manage. If it can find a way to co-exist with the one product that potentially strikes to the heart of the integrity of the entire sport, the NFL can find a way to partner with any legal product.

Indeed, the NFL’s lingering recalcitrance to remove marijuana from the list of banned recreational substances will evaporate immediately when the time comes to sell its first sativa sponsor. (And, yes, it makes way more sense to break the partnerships into strains.)

So drink responsibly. And gamble responsibly. Eventually, the NFL will be telling you to toke responsibly. Because the most responsible way to run a major business is to embrace, not shun, any and all money-for-nothing partnerships that come its way.

NFL has its first ever spirits sponsor originally appeared on Pro Football Talk