NFL Sunday Ticket goes to YouTube with $2 billion annual deal

The NFL announced Thursday that its Sunday Pass subscription package will go to Google’s YouTube TV starting next season, in the league’s second media rights deal with the streaming service.

YouTube TV will pay nearly $2 billion a year for the rights to the Sunday Ticket package, according to people familiar with the matter.

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At the start of the 2023-24 season, Sunday Ticket will be available in two ways: as an add-on package on YouTube TV and as a standalone option on YouTube Primetime channels, allowing you to subscribe to individual streaming services and channels as well as watch movies. Pricing has not yet been announced.

“For a number of years we’ve focused on increasing digital distribution of our games and this partnership is another example of us looking into the future and building the next generation of NFL fans,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in Thursday’s announcement.

DirecTV has owned the rights to Sunday Ticket since its inception in 1994. Paying $1.5 billion annually them since the last renewal in 2014. She has not made a bid to keep her contract going. However, the satellite TV provider has been open to continuing to show games to commercial establishments, such as bars and restaurants, similar to its deal with Amazon for “Friday Night Football,” according to people familiar with the matter.

The deal with YouTube TV doesn’t include commercial rights, which could increase the value of the package, and the NFL is still sorting that out, according to one person.

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A US-only product, Sunday Ticket is the only way fans can watch live Sunday afternoon NFL games outside of their home markets on broadcast stations CBS and Fox.

It’s the latest NFL package to get a media rights renewal. last year, Basiccbs channel, Fox And the ComcastNBC affiliate has agreed to pay more than $2 billion annually for the 11-year-old’s packages, while Disney pays about $2.7 billion annually for Monday Night Football, CNBC previously reported.

Amazon It acquired the rights to “Thursday Night Football”, making it the first streaming platform solely to broadcast NFL games, for which it pays around $1 billion annually.

The league had been in negotiations for some time to find a new owner for the Sunday Ticket. an AppleAnd Amazon and Disney ESPN has been among the bidders interested in the package at one point or another, CNBC previously reported.

YouTube TV is an Internet package of broadcast and cable networks that reverses the traditional linear pay-TV operator. Its basic plan costs $64.99 per month. In July, Google announced that YouTube TV had surpassed 5 million customers, including beta subscriptions.

YouTube Primetime channels, which will be Sunday Ticket’s a la carte option, is a distribution platform similar to subscription networks and streaming services over Amazon Prime channels.

For comparison, Apple recently signed a 10-year deal for the rights to broadcast Major League Soccer games. The tech giant recently announced that the MLS Season Pass will launch in February and will be available to fans on the Apple TV app for $14.99 per month per season. Subscribers to the streaming service, Apple TV+, who are already paying $4.99 per month can subscribe for $12.99 per month.

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In recent months, YouTube TV has appeared as Strong competitor for rightsBecause it could save a lot of what the league had hoped to achieve with a new partner in Sunday Ticket — a technology platform with a large balance sheet and global reach, and the ability to support older syndicated TV programming.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said the league was pressing for Sunday Ticket to end up on the streaming service. “I think this is what’s best for consumers at this point,” he said. Goodell previously told CNBC.

For a while, it seemed that Apple was close to acquiring the rights. The company is expanding its sports footprint for the Apple TV+ streaming service. It recently signed a 10-year deal with Major League Soccer starting in 2023, and last year began broadcasting Major League Baseball games on Friday night.

However, discussions broke down Because of the current restrictions around the rights to Sunday Ticket, Apple wanted more flexibility in how the package was distributed, CNBC previously reported.

Amazon has also been considered another top contender, considering it already broadcasts “Friday Night Football” games and is a streaming-only platform.

While these competitions are primarily broadcast on Prime and DirecTV It distributes the games commercially, in bars, restaurants, hotels and retailers. The two reached a multi-year agreement before the season began. People familiar with the matter said DirecTV is interested in offering Sunday Ticket games at the same capacity.

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