The NFL has finally completed its latest round of broadcast rights renewals and Amazon came away with an exclusive streaming deal for Thursday Night Football.
Beginning with the 2023 season and running through 2033, Amazon Prime Video will be the only place to watch Thursday Night Football in what the NFL called its first all-digital package. Amazon Prime Video has been streaming NFL games since 2017 but within a tri-cast model it shared with broadcast partners like Fox.
The NFL also reached new distribution deals with ABC/ESPN, CBS, Fox and NBC, and all of those agreements have streaming components built in.
CBS retained rights for all AFC Sunday afternoon games and all those games will be broadcast on the CBS Television Network and streamed live on Paramount+. ESPN+ subscribers will be able to stream one International Series game on an exclusive national basis every season and the new agreement allows ESPN the opportunity to simulcast all ABC and ESPN games on ESPN+. FOX expanded its digital rights so its AVOD streaming platform Tubi can deliver NFL programming on digital platforms. In addition to simulcasting all Sunday Night Football games, Peacock, NBCUniversal's streaming service, will deliver an exclusive feed of a select number of NFL games over the course of the agreement.
"These new media deals will provide our fans even greater access to the games they love. We're proud to grow our partnerships with the most innovative media companies in the market," said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in a statement. "Along with our recently completed labor agreement with the NFLPA, these distribution agreements bring an unprecedented era of stability to the League and will permit us to continue to grow and improve our game."
The NFL also said that its media partners will have greater ability to innovate around their productions and provide interactive elements such as stats, data, chat and integrated social feeds within their digital presentations. The new agreements also allow for alternate presentations of select NFL games similar to ESPN's MegaCast and CBS Sports' presentation on Nickelodeon.
The NFL’s announcement made no mention of the Sunday Ticket package, which was rumored to be leaving AT&T and heading to ESPN+. But Recode’s Peter Kafka said that an NFL rep confirmed that Sunday Ticket is staying with DirecTV.