Reports: NFL, DirecTV near new Sunday Ticket deal


The longstanding agreement that gives DirecTV exclusive access to the Sunday Ticket package that gives NFL fans the ability to watch every game expires after next season. But the two sides have apparently come to terms on a new deal.

Multiple reports on Thursday say the league and the satellite TV provider have agreed to keep Sunday Ticket on DirecTV for years to come.

DirecTV, which pays about $1 billion a year to the NFL for exclusive access to Sunday Ticket, expects to keep that exclusive access going forward.

“We’ve had very, very constructive conversations with the NFL, but it’s complex,” DirecTV CEO Michael White told Variety. “I’m very optimistic we will get an exclusive deal done on NFL Sunday Ticket.”

There had been talk that the NFL might open up the Sunday Ticket package to cable companies, or that an Internet distributor like Google’s YouTube could bid on the contract. But DirecTV seems set to keep the competitors at bay and hold onto exclusive access to Sunday Ticket.

A new deal would need to be approved by DirecTV’s board of directors and the NFL’s owners, but this is a deal that has made both sides a lot of money, and now seems likely to keep making both sides a lot of money for many more years.

93 responses to “Reports: NFL, DirecTV near new Sunday Ticket deal

  1. The NFL really needs to sell this to google so they can stream it through YouTube, it’s time to break the back of Satellite/Cable Providers. There are already too many commercials, people are already getting what they want online or through netflix.

    Looks like it won’t happen, but gotta believe Google could be willing to offer more.

  2. They should have struck the billion dollar deal with verizon as planned. The league would get way more eyeballs on all the games from people at work traveling etc …and the result would have been more merchandise sells and fan interest.

  3. Hey direct tv why did u yank my redzone this year while also RAISING my bill??

    Not to mention I took a chance not renewing my sunday ticket being a saints fan in atl and it payed off. Nearly every game has been telivised.

    Screw u dorect tv, ill be bolting when my contract is up this summer.

  4. Over the last several seasons, directv has made Sunday ticket available to almost anyone who wants it without satellite tv. Either through gaming consoles, tablets, or computers, you can get Sunday ticket. No way the cable giants or telecoms would be so generous without subscribing to their overpriced services.

    DirecTV has been good stewards of the package for any fan who wants it.

    A lot of fans seem to want it for free, but that’s not going to happen.

    Bravo, NFL and directv.

  5. Guess I will never have Sunday ticket, which really sucks. But I can’t get the wife to sign off on cable that loses service every time there’s a slight breeze, much less 20″ of snow up here in New England. This is really disappointing. I was waiting to see what happened with this. Guess I’ll have to move forward with the plan to install a slingbox on my parents tv to watch Titans games.

  6. What a joke. They have no idea how much money they’re losing by shutting so many people out who can’t have satellite service for one reason or another.

  7. As a Viking fan living in L.A. the Sunday ticket has been awesome for me. Of course if I didn’t watch so many Viking games my stress level would be much lower, but that’s a different issue.

  8. Wow this makes me angry! Dump DirecTV and get games to the fans! There has to be a way to make more money for the game than this deal will pay…

  9. I hate that I pay for sunday ticket but I don’t get:
    Sunday Night football
    Teams that are being broadcast on local channel (I don’t have cable)
    Games that don’t sellout

    Screw you, NFL.

  10. NNNNNNOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!! Directv sucks but need it to watch my Redskins other wise I would drop them so fast.!!!!!!

  11. I’ll no longer pay DitrecTV for the Ticket. I can get the NFL Audio pass for the radio broadcasts live on Sunday and I can get the games themselves within a few hours of the games ending on NFL.COM for a minimal fee.

    Goodbye DirecTV.

  12. It’s my Minnesota Vikings season ticket package that I have purchased every year since 1998. 50 Yd Line Seats, my own kitchen, and bathroom. I never hesitate when they send me my renewal notice. GO VIKINGS!!!!

  13. Wonder how much the price will go up now.

    Also, can someone explain why on the mobile app I can’t watch a game on the local network? I understand it when I’m home off the satellite, but if I’m trying to watch it on my phone chances are I’m not near a TV. I mean who would choose a 3 inch screen to watch a game over a regular sized television?

  14. This needs to be opened up to cable providers, Google, and whoever else wants to provide the games. I don’t care how much DirecTv is paying the NFL, there’s no way its more than if everyone were carrying Sunday Ticket. To be honest, if it was, my bet would be on DirecTv folding. For most Americans, the only reason to even consider being their customer is for Sunday Ticket.

  15. Please move it to youtube
    Some of us happen to be freshman in high school.
    I believe it could convenient since i dont want to watch the dolphins on tv.
    I want my colts.

  16. Really Directv? Are they trying to keep the rights away from Google? Google will just buy Directv and call it a night.

  17. Well maybe buying Liberty Media isn’t so easy. Regardless I hope the NFL allows an Internet provider in the mix.

  18. I’d like to see them offer ‘team’ packages. Get all your favorite team’s games live, including preseason. Also throw in the local team pregame show.

  19. Of course, why should a bunch of out of touch geriatric billionaires have any clue to the fact that Cable and Satellite companies are both closer to the end of old business models.

    The writing is on the wall, younger generations are cutting the cable (and satellite) and moving into 21st century entertainment models instead of relics of the past like Direct TV or Cable. With Microsoft starting original content for X-Box 1, and Netflix growing larger with original content not to mention subscribership, and Amazon growing into the same realms, and even further still Google and Apple making moves to make a la carte entertainment a reality right in the living room. You are talking about Billion dollar companies each that have made their bones in innovation and they are all growing and pushing us towards a new model.

    If the NFL was smart they would paint some pictures for these dinosaurs that own the teams and show them that like Baseball did for Radio and TV the NFL can do for internet based technology, they would instantly legitimize and push these new technologies into a whole new realm for the older generations and help push them to the future.

    I am a football fan but I am not going to get fiscally raped by Direct TV just to enjoy Sunday Ticket. I would rather watch whatever is on normal TV or Redzone or go to a sports bar to catch my favorite team. I would be happy to pay but not to sign a 2 year contract with Direct TV that inflates in price faster than Oprah during the holidays. No thank you.

  20. I can’t believe the NFL wouldn’t make more money by just making the Ticket available to all cable and satellite companies. Why would the NFL care about exclusivity when they could make the providers offer to all consumers of pay television? They should let all the cable/satellite companies come up with other ways to draw all of us suckers in!!!!!!

  21. Comcast blows, directv is rad. Paid 100 bucks a month for Comcast 8 years ago, and never pay more than 60 with DTV and that’s with getting RZC free every year just for asking.

  22. Well, TBH, I am probably going to drop NFL Sunday Ticket next season.

    I live near Tampa and have been a Cowboys fan for over 50 years. I have subscribed to NFL Sunday Ticket for as long as it has been available because I want to see EVERY Boys game I can (as painful as that may be at times).

    The last two years I’ve also subscribed to NFL Game Rewind and frankly, For $60/yr vs $200+ (for Sunday Ticket) I can wait the 3-4 hours til the NFL puts up the commercial free broadcast version of the game. It isn’t difficult to not look at the score before viewing the game on Rewind (and if Dallas gets blown out it’s good to get the three hours back by not watching the game), and, using Apple TV I can put the game up on my 70″ HDTV with minimal effort and the picture is every bit as good, if not better than the broadcast version.

  23. I hate that I can’t get Sunday Ticket while living in an apartment that doesn’t allow satellites…

    This would be amazing to have for all service providers, even at the same price… think of how much more money the NFL could make. DirecTV, while awesome (I’ve had it for years), does have a limited availability to those who don’t have acceptable apartments. I would gladly pay the same amount through my provider for the same service.

  24. Hey DTV, How about breaking out the Redzone channel as a stand alone like others do. Its such BS that you cant get it by itself thru DTV

  25. I remember as a kid being able to watch Muhamid Ali fight on TV
    For free. Just had to get the rabbit ears in a good position. Now I
    Pay over$100 for a bunch of B.S. TV shows.

  26. 1 station gets exclusive rites? ya, that’s the good ole boy nfl as we know it. its a shame you are allowed to have one entity control the most popular sport in the U.S.the word monopoly comes to mind

  27. Frankly, I could care less. I get the NFL RED ZONE. The single best football programing since the game came to TV.

    And if I wish, there is an internet app via my “SMART” TV and/or PS3 to access (for a fee of course). But with the whip around coverage of the Red Zone and the ability to flip to my local came, why pay for Direct TV?

  28. Packers fan in New York. I switched to Directv for Sunday Ticket and it’s more reliable than the Time Warner Cable I had previous. Would hate to have to switch to some Cable provider who constantly is doing service to cable lines to get Packers games.

  29. Satellite is on the verge of being an obsolete technology for TV. Any long term investment in keeping games on that technology instead of opening up the market to the world via the internet is just … plain… stupid.

  30. Who cares? We got the interweb and I’m over the league anyway. They had me focused and dying to see their product ever since the ticket came out until last year. Now, not so much.

  31. this is BS! there are so many creative ways to deliver NFL football that aren’t being explored because the NFL sells everything to DIRECTV.

    why not shop the product to all television providers/internet services/game consoles? DIRECTV has not improved the nfl fan experience at all. let these companies compete and we will all win.

    they could sell single team packages, division packages, single games (basically PPV), split-screen customizing (2 or 4 games on the screen at once).

    not everyone can get DIRECTV in the first place so they’re shutting themselves out of homes. really pathetic.

  32. seems likely to keep making both sides a lot of money for many more years.

    Not true by DTV’S own admission they have been paying 1 billion and only getting back 700 million
    don’t know if the board will approve an increase in Dollars for more years

  33. I absolutely hate the fact that the NFL continues to give DirecTV this exclusive deal. I get that they pay a fortune for these rights and it’s all about the money, but one would think that opening this up to other providers (just like every other sport) would bring in additional revenue streams. Then again, this is the same league that wants to put a team in London and is fast approaching 20 years without a team in Los Angeles.

    I love this league but the worst thing to ever happen to the NFL is the people running it from Park Ave.

  34. I hate DirectTV. If they lose the Sunday Ticket they will go out of business. I feel held hostage because I want the Sunday Ticket and they are the only one who offers it.

  35. Terrible news. Direct TV is so bad. Terrible customer service. Terrible video service. Don’t think this is changing any time soon. Thanks NFL!

  36. This is terrible news. I was hoping DirecTV would lose the Sunday ticket so I could drop them like a ton of bricks (just like almost every other DirecTV customer.

    I had the ESPN College BBall package last year and it automatically renewed in October. I called to cancel 2 or 3 days after the first monthly payment and was told I had to continue making payments even though I don’t even watch it. Absolutely no notification from DirecTV that it would auto renew 6 months early and no notification that I can’t cancel once the package starts. Now I’m stuck playing $160 for absolutely nothing. DirecTV, please let the Sunday Ticket go so I can drop your sorry company.

    I should note that every time I call DirecTV, they keep me in the US for support. But at soon as you go to cancel, you’re talking to some guy in India.

  37. “No. Hook Comcast/Xfinity up with the Sunday Ticket.”

    You are aware that’s still not even a TV option in many major markets, right?

  38. afty2001 says:
    Dec 12, 2013 8:45 PM
    Being a Colts fan while living in Illinois, the Sunday NFL Ticket is very convenient.

    It would be more convenient if we could get it places that we can’t get DirecTV.

  39. Love DirecTV. Just gotta play the game and call every 6 months to complain.
    I haven’t paid for Sunday Ticket in about 5 years and have it every year.

  40. This is the worst news for nfl fans. Anything is better than this. PPV games on cable/internet are the way to go, especially for us out of market fans. i will never get direct tv, not even with the ticket. But if the ticket was on cable, I’d switch providers. I’d pay to have it streamed to my computer or phone. Whatever they are offering you NFL, it’s not enough. Go with another option and see how fast you can rake it in.

  41. Directv would be out of business without the NFL Sunday Ticket. As an Eagles fan in New Mexico, I’ve had Sunday Ticket for 11 years. I would not have had Directv for one day if I could get it from cable.

  42. I’ve had the Sunday ticket since they started it, 15 years or so ago. I’ve lived in Philly, LA, Chicago and I can’t remember a Sunday when I missed my game because of rain or any weather. It’s the main reason I have DirecTV. I have comcast for my internet and if that is indicative of their level of service, no thank you, way too many outages.

  43. Why not just let the deal expire and see who comes calling with the best offers. Google makes money every minute. You’d have to think they’d make a compelling and innovative offer.

  44. This is greats new for the fan. I have had the ticket for the past 10 years. Every year the price goes up, and you get less games. ( all Thrusday, Sunday Night and Monday nights games aren’t on it). If this happens I am dropping the ticket. So if this happens brace yourself for higher prices for less product.

  45. Have DirecTV & NFLST as I love football.

    But to sell it to a cable company like Comcast? How would that help? If you’re not in a Comcast service area, you’re SOL. At least with DirecTV, you can get that ANYWHERE in the USA.

  46. While embarrassing to admit, I keep my DirecTV simply b/c they have Sunday ticket.

    I’m a Dolphins fan in CA and it’s imperative to my well being from Sept.-Dec. that I can watch my team.

    Hope that someone else gets the contract b/c DirecTV not worth it w/o NFL Ticket. But if DirecTV retains exclusivity, I prob. stick with them. Sucks.

  47. I’ve had DirecTV NFL Sunday Ticket since 1998. I get every game they show on Sundays. I’ve had rain fade once, for 6 minutes. Once. A few times there were stadium transmission issues that were resolved within minutes. I have lived in Florida, where it rains a lot and North Carolina surrounded by trees. Sunday Ticket has been reliable, on time and delivers as advertised. Yes, it can be expensive… but I did get one year free two separate seasons. I get to chose which games I want to watch and record most for later. The picture and audio is satellite quality and never fails. I also know that the NFL prints cash each week and I help…but I get what I want. I don’t need to watch games on a cell phone. Just my thoughts…

  48. I would happily pay to stream out-of-market games a la carte or to subscribe to a team, but I can just keep pirating instead. It’s cool.

  49. Would be nice to see a live streaming deal with google. If it stays with Directv then I would hope they would offer an option to subscribe to a specific team instead of having to buy the whole package. They could offer an option of say $50 to watch just the team of your choice. As a Dolphins fan living in Colorado, I am only interested in watching my team and not all the other games going on. I don’t have the time or interest to watch all the other games nor do I want to pay 200-300 dollars to subscribe to the Sunday Ticket.

  50. No doubt Sunday Ticket is essential for out of town games but I spent MANY years a slave to the raping that is DirecTV….why not open it up to more providers thus assuring the best quality for all games?

  51. Dear Direct TV / NFL,

    Please include an option for purchasing a “season ticket” package for one team only.

    I have been a Sunday Ticket subscriber since day one and have found that most of the games I want to watch are available on my local stations. Also, quite a few of the games each and every week border on being unwatchable due to weak match-ups and poor play.

    I really only want to watch the Denver Broncos play every week but have been forced to pay for games I don’t want.

    This is the same issue I and many others like me have with cable and satellite providers in general.

    While it’s true a given package may contain 57 channels (Sorry Mr. Springsteen) there is nothing on.

  52. As a Raider fan on the East coast, this is BS. Direct TV has horrible customer service. I cancelled them when I was told that they could not come out to fix my Satellite system for a week(7 Feakin days). Making it a pay per view would make the NFL a whole lot more money. I am so disappointed. What if Cable, Direct TV, and Dish Network all paid the NFL $500 Million each? THAT isn’t doable?

  53. I can guarantee the only reason DirecTV is still a thriving business is because of the monoply of the Sunday Ticket. The internet distrubution is the best way for all fans. It could stream through smart TVs, game consoles etc. Moreover it could allow product divisions like just buying the AFC East or Dolphins package solo. This obviously is in the best interest of us consumers, but not for DirectTV. The NFL is stupid… They would make a lot more money with more paying customers! Which brings me to my next point: I watch any game I want for FREE via many rebound feeds from various off domestic soil websites. Stealing is no worse than DirecTV extortion in my opinion.

  54. I am sure politics and back room handshakes were just as involved in this deal as cash was. That’s how it is with contracts this big. The fans don’t matter whatsoever.

  55. kjkulsrud says:
    Dec 12, 2013 9:54 PM
    I hate that I can’t get Sunday Ticket while living in an apartment that doesn’t allow satellites…

    Actually I believe its against federal law for the to not allow satellite dishes. The only thing they can do is prevent you from having the dish installed/mounted on their property. If you have a balcony/patio and a clear view of the southern sky, you should be able to get setup.

  56. For years I lived in a home without a clear view to the SW sky….no Bills games for me, no revenue for DTV/NFL.

    Now that I have it, I pay full price year after year, while new subscribers get deal after deal tossed at them. But maybe they’ll give me a break if I call and bitch loud enough. Great business practices they have…it’s like haggling over a string of beads in Tijuana.

  57. thefiesty1 says:
    Dec 12, 2013 9:23 PM

    …..and what’s your point. Why would anyone in their right mind PAY extra for Sunday Ticket?

    Seriously?? Ummm millions of true fans do every season. Red Zone is for fantasy football nerds with no allegiance to no team. Real fans get the Sunday Ticket.

    I’ve had the NFL Sunday Ticket since 1997. I have 6 Direct TV recievers (and 2 cable boxes) and watch a total of 8 NFL games (6 out of area and the 3 locals Giants, Jets and Phili) and at least 20 college football games each Saturday. Screw going out to a bar. Even though the Sunday ticket is $300+, this year I negotiated with Direct TV to pay $100 per month for the recievers, standard programming, ESPN Gameplan, NFL Sunday Ticket and the Sports Pack.

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