It’s rumored that YouTube TV could be the new home of DIRECTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket package, which would vastly change streaming and sports entertainment.
Cord Cutters News has reported YouTube is angling to land the prestigious pro football package. However, hat tip to the site for intel from Sports Business Journal, who reports Amazon Prime Video is also in the running.
Whoever wins this rights war, it’ll definitely have a massive impact on the streaming landscape. But YouTube landing NFL Sunday Ticket would be the ultimate crazy town, especially in light of what’s happening now.
What is NFL Sunday Ticket?
For those not in the know, it’s a package almost exclusively available to DIRECTV subscribers. You can get it without a DIRECTV subscription, but only under certain stipulations, outlined here by Tom’s Guide:
“DirecTV only makes Sunday Ticket available outside of its regular subscriptions if you live in an area that can’t get service from the satellite TV provider; you’re also eligible for the service if you live in a multi-unit residence like an apartment, condo or dormitory.”Tom’s Guide
With it, you can see all NFL regular-season games in every market, save for the ones on their local CBS and FOX broadcasts. And of course, the prime-time games aren’t a part of it.
Considering how popular the NFL is stateside, it’s surprising fans don’t have easier access to all games. Those who have allegiances to certain teams outside of their home market can seldom see their favorites play.
This requires NFL Sunday Ticket, yet DIRECTV isn’t the official cable provider for so many U.S. regions. Hence, there’s an accessibility problem.
Thankfully, though, the NFL Sunday Ticket contract runs out after the 2021-22 season.
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Amazon has a leg up thanks to Premier League?
Prime Video has been streaming select English Premier League matches. It’s said by Sports Business Journal that the NFL has been taking note of this. Amazon has had great success with it by all accounts, which bodes well.
Also helping the cause is the fact that Prime has been the home to Thursday Night Football in recent years. There’s already a relationship between the NFL and Amazon in that regard.
But does that mean they’re in the driver’s seat for NFL Sunday Ticket, and that YouTube will be left out in the cold?
While it could, let’s bear in mind that Google owns YouTube. If anyone has master domain over the Internet, it’d be YouTube’s parent company. Plus, YouTube TV’s service is among the best for cord cutters already, especially in sports.
How YouTube TV can change everything
As CNET’s Richard Neiva observed, YouTube product chief Neal Mohan was spotted at a game this weekend with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. That at least suggests YouTube is still in the running for these streaming rights.
This battle is still a ways off, yet Google’s already pushing to buy the rights — probably in part due to the Prime competition.
Amazon already has plenty of skin in the streaming game between its own original programming. The multinational giant has a wide reach across numerous other industries, too.
There’s so much ubiquity with Amazon already that snatching such a big chunk of NFL rights is just overkill. Whereas YouTube is singularly focused on entertaining the world.
The big edge comes in that YouTube (via Google) will always be on the cutting edge technologically in terms of being able to house every NFL game on Sunday Ticket.
It’s frustratingly hard to access NFL Sunday Ticket. Although many in the world nowadays have a Prime subscription and in turn get the perk of Prime Video, YouTube TV can supplant traditional pay TV packages and have NFL Sunday Ticket.
Even if it’s a little bit of an extra fee, it’ll still probably pale in comparison to pay TV contracts. The inevitable transition to cord-cutting makes YouTube TV a more ideal NFL Sunday Ticket home than the streaming-specific Amazon Prime Video.