Amazon signs deal with DirecTV to show Thursday Night Football games in bars

Javonte Williams #33 of the Denver Broncos carries the ball against the Cincinnati Bengals at Empower Field At Mile High on December 19, 2021 in Denver, Colorado.

Matthew Stockman | Getty Images

Amazon’s Prime Video has struck a deal with DirecTV to broadcast its “Thursday Night Football” games to more than 300,000 businesses such as bars and restaurants.

The announcement comes as the National Football League pre-season is underway. DirecTV will air its first game with Amazon Prime Video — a game between the San Francisco 49ers and Houston Texans — on Thursday.

Amazon Prime, which has expanded its sports offerings for its streaming subscribers, will be the exclusive home of Thursday Night Football and air its first regular season game on September 15. Local broadcast stations for teams playing during a given week will also carry the games.

Amazon is the first streaming service to hold the exclusive rights to an NFL game bundle.

The deal was part of an 11-year media rights deal the NFL reached last year with media companies that also include Comcast Corp.’s NBCUniversal, Paramount Corp.’s CBS Sports, Walt Disney Co.’s ESPN .and Fox Corp.

Amazon’s deal with DirecTV offers current business customers, which also include hotels, casinos, sportsbooks and retailers, the Prime Video stream of Thursday Night Football at no additional cost.

DirecTV is not new to offering NFL games to business and residential customers. The company currently owns the rights to Sunday Ticket, the NFL’s subscription package for out-of-market games, which will end after the upcoming season.

The NFL has yet to announce a new partner for Sunday Ticket, although commissioner Roger Goodell said in July that he expects the league to select a streaming service by the fall. Apple, Amazon and Disney are all interested in owning the rights to Sunday Ticket, CNBC previously reported.

Although DirecTV is no longer bidding on the Sunday Ticket rights, the company wants to maintain a relationship with businesses like bars and restaurants, CNBC reported, which would be similar to the deal with Amazon Prime for Thursday Night. Soccer.

Disclosure: CNBC is owned by Comcast’s NBCUniversal.

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