The NFL plans to broadcast one regular season game next season online, reports Sports Business Daily’s John Ourand.
The league has not decided or finalized any deals and will wait to see which digital companies would like to produce the game and handle the advertising sales.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell hinted at such a proposition during his annual State of the League during Super Bowl week.
Goodell said the game would be carried in both teams' home markets on standard broadcast platforms, but that a stream online would allow the game to reach “millions of homes that do not have traditional television service.”
The league will consider experimenting with one of the three International Series games that are scheduled to be played in London next season. Each game will kick off at 9:30 a.m. ET, and Sports Business Journal reports the league is looking at the game between the Buffalo Bills and Jacksonville Jaguars on Oct. 25 as a favorite for the live stream game.
“That 9:30 a.m. time slot is interesting internationally when you start to think of parts of Asia, where it reaches into Sunday night, as well as parts of Europe,” NFL senior vice president of media strategy Hans Schroeder said. "The one-off, over-the-top game is more of a test to see if digital companies can handle the large audiences that watch NFL games.”
The league already has a four-year, $1 billion partnership with Verizon, the nation’s largest phone company.
The service gives customers in home markets who signed up a chance to stream every regular-season and playoff game on their smartphones, plus view the NFL Network and NFL Red Zone channels.
- Scooby Axson