With the signing of a new $113-billion contract with CBS, Fox, NBC, ESPN/ABC and Amazon for the next 11 years signed on March 18, 2021, the future of DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket still remains up in the air.
For those unaware of NFL Sunday Ticket, it is a streaming service, hosted by DirecTV, that allows out-of-market fans to watch non-prime-time games of all 32 NFL teams. Games can be blacked out if they air locally over the air.
NFL Sunday Ticket was initially launched in 1994 after DirecTV, which launched just months before, allowed fans to watch out-of-market games.
While the current contract will run through 2022, the future home of NFL Sunday Ticket still remains up in the air.
Many believe ESPN+ is the favorite to receive the rights for future years.
Amazon is also a potential home for NFL Sunday Ticket as they have begun acquiring rights to some NFL streaming rights in recent years. They currently have streaming rights for Thursday Night Football and aired an exclusive Saturday afternoon game on Dec. 26, 2020, when it carried the San Francisco 49ers vs. Arizona Cardinals match-up.
As for DirecTV’s current NFL Sunday Ticket, parent company AT&T initialized the sale of a 30 percent stake in the company to private equity firm TPG Capital. The hope is that NFL Sunday Ticket can be spun off into its own company and retain rights to NFL Sunday Ticket for years to come.
The deal with TPG Capital is set to close in the latter half of 2021.
As NFL streaming war will heat up in the months to come.
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