An ‘NFL Plus’ streaming service is on the way
The NFL is working on its own direct-to-consumer streaming service, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell told CNBC in an interview. Goodell did not specify exactly what content will be available on the service, which he called “NFL Plus”, but the league aims to launch it for the upcoming NFL season.
“We think it’s very important to have a direct relationship with the consumer,” said Goodell. “We think we have a lot of content and a lot of ability to do that. Consumers want it, so we’m very excited about what the NFL Plus is going to be. But it is really in an early stage. I think you will see that it continues to grow over the years. And it will be an important opportunity for us to talk directly with our fans. It is an important strategy for us going forward. ”
As for when it may be available, “the time will be for this season, at least in the initial phase,” he said. “The details, we’ll wait and let you know in a few weeks.” The NFL did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In May Sports Business Journal reported that NFL Plus is expected to launch this month and will offer live games, although the games available will be limited to what you can see in your local market. The service is expected to cost around $ 5 per month, but a source told Sports Business Journal which may change. The service can also offer radio, podcasts and team-created content.
In the CNBC interview, Goodell also discussed the potential next home for the NFL Sunday Ticket, which is expected to move to another platform after the NFL’s contract with DirecTV for the lucrative package expires at the end of the 2022 season. Apple, Amazon and Disney are reportedly among the companies fighting for the deal, and Goodell told CNBC that “I clearly believe” that the NFL Sunday Ticket will move to a streaming service.
“We truly believe that these new platforms give us an ability to innovate beyond where we are today and make the experience for our consumers so much better,” said Goodell. “It obviously makes it more accessible to our consumers, and especially the younger demographic, which is one we really want to get to. I think this will make it more accessible to fans, I think it will be a better experience for fans, and we’re excited about it. ” Goodell expects the NFL to make its Sunday ticket decision by the fall.
Amazon would make some sense as the new home given that it already has a big deal with the NFL for Thursday Night Football. Disney owns ESPN and the streaming service ESPN Plus, which makes the NFL Sunday Ticket a logical place there as well. And while Apple TV Plus’ Friday Night Baseball debut may not have been a home run, the company just announced a major deal to stream every Major League Soccer game for 10 years from 2023, indicating that the iPhone maker is serious with increasing the sport’s offerings.