The NFL Is Going Pay-Per-View In 2023 | Sports Takes & News | TooAthletic.com
With the new NFL broadcasting deals now in place, it felt like Austin Powers should have been announcing the $100+ Billion in contracts the league signed with their broadcasting partners this week. But along with all the familiar names from CBS, ESPN, Fox and NBC there was a new player at the party, Amazon, who beginning in 2023 will be the only way you will be able to watch any out of market Thursday Night games. And since I am not paying to watch any primetime football games, I will not be joining this new era of Digital Pay-Per-View the NFL is entering.
The new NFL broadcasting package will phase out DirecTV’s Sunday NFL ticket in two seasons, and provide ESPN+ streaming service the exclusive rights to that package in 2023. That service, which is destined to see a price increase before then will be the only way fans will be able to watch out of market games on Sundays, with NBC still holding the last game of the day and ESPN/ABC giving us the Monday Night Football game as they currently do now.
While we were the NFL finalized 100 Billion dollar deal that will help transition fans from traditional syndicated broadcasting aka "free TV" to streaming. #therichgetsricher
— Decory Davis (@DecoryD) March 19, 2021
So, right off the bat, we can see that from a digital streaming perspective, the NFL has transferred the Sunday Ticket to a platform that football fans will still need to pay for every game in order to watch the ones they want. Not the best plan in the world, but not one we are unfamiliar with.
Where the NFL is going Digital Pay-Per-View is on its Thursday Night Football package, you know the game each week that players dislike and fans can take or leave depending upon the match up. Now, thanks to Amazon, you will need to buy Prime Video in order to watch a bunch of random NFL games in the middle of the week, games that are often divisional matchups that can’t be flexed out of, and often involve teams that don’t impact your favorite team’s playoff chances. In short, this is the one NFL game of the week we don’t mind missing.
Eventually every NFL game will be pay-per-view only.
— Bob Rivers (@BobRivers18) March 18, 2021
The NFL knows that it could never go completely Pay-Per-View by just selling every game on its own since there are too many games by the middle of the year that fans know are unimportant, and would be willing to skip out on if forced to buy it. Thanks to Amazon and their other broadcasting partners the league has Pay-Per-View partners that are willing to guarantee the league over $100 Billion from 2023-33 to broadcast and stream every game for those 11 seasons.
The NFL is taking the sure thing over the variable since the networks, and now Amazon, want to make sure they are in the mix for the big games like the playoffs and Super Bowl, something ABC/ESPN will have again under this deal.
Why the Amazon Deal is a little closer to Pay-Per-View than before is you need to buy something that has nothing else to do with sports (but probably will in future years) in order to watch a football game. For me, since I am not a fan of the Thursday night game anyway and still know that games will probably also still air on the radio, I don’t mind saying thanks, but no thanks to Amazon. This is, however, all the doings of fans cutting the cord for years by getting rid of cable television and spending so much time on their phones … which means that in the next contract companies like AT&T or Verizon will likely bid on a streaming package and offer it to their subscribers as part of their cell phone service.
This is what the world of sports is coming to, you can stream most games to you without causing a drastic change to your life or routine. A race that, for now, is being won by Amazon and the NFL, and it’s a race that’s not even close.
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The NFL Is Going Pay-Per-View In 2023 | TooAthletic.com
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