NFL denies it has reached new agreement with DirecTV


Despite multiple reports on Thursday saying the NFL and DirecTV have reached a new agreement to keep the exclusive Sunday Ticket package on satellite television, the league says no deal has been reached.

“We do not have an agreement. Any speculation or reports to the contrary are not accurate,” NFL Media Group VP/Communications Alex Riethmiller told Sports Business Daily.

An agreement may not be done, but DirecTV’s CEO declared himself “very optimistic” that a deal will get done to keep Sunday Ticket exclusively on DirecTV. So it sounds like DirecTV is prepared to spend whatever it will take to keep the NFL’s owners happy. If DirecTV can’t come to terms with the NFL on a new deal, the NFL could open it up to cable companies, or to Internet distributors like YouTube or Netflix.

Under the current deal, which extends through the end of the 2014 season, DirecTV pays the NFL about $1 billion a year.

75 responses to “NFL denies it has reached new agreement with DirecTV

  1. Oh, God…say it ain’t so. DirecTV sucks. Please please please make a deal with more than one carrier. Amazon Prime would be awesome.

  2. One billion a year. For football. Let’s all think about that for a second.

    The NFL is dangerously close to taking over the world, and not in a flattering sense.

  3. A few years back, MLB almost made an exclusive deal with DirecTV and fans went nuts, and public pressure made MLB change the deal. Fans did not want to be limited to just DirecTV. I don’t get why the same pressure doesn’t apply to the NFL. RedZone is a great option, but nothing is worse than being stuck on a Sunday watching two bad games in your market, knowing there are other great games being played elsewhere you can’t see. I don’t have DirecTV and where I live, it isn’t an option. If the NFL really cares about fans, why not make a deal that allows Sunday Ticket to be provided across a number of providers? Make it as accessible to as many people as possible.

  4. I personally think its criminal for the NFL to give DirecTV exclusivity on Sunday Ticket. The NFL should allow games to be shown for a fee on the Internet and cable channels in the same manner that MLB allows all major league baseball games to be televised. What the NFL has done with this in the past is history, but get it right going forward.

  5. I got a taste of Sunday Ticket through buying Madden special addition. Hooked the laptop up to the TV and minus a few lags it was pretty awesome, but I don’t have directv or cable. I for one would love to see it available on an internet distributor, as long as its stable and doesn’t cost an arm & a leg.

  6. I am happy to get all the games – but there are still goofy rules that prevent you from seeing all the games as they advertise. Although this occurs infrequently it is not true that you get every game in its entirety.

    For example if a the game you want is on the local network affiliate but the game is delayed due to another game going over — you will miss the start of the game you want to see.

    This happened to Cowboys fans this year — I don’t see how the NFL or DirecTV benefit from these goofy rules.

    Actually we have the technology now to offer all the games as a pay per view. Why not go to this model. Let fans pay for the games they want to see and only the games they want. say $30-40 bucks a game?

    Don’t allow black out rules or any kind of goofy overtime issues to impact this and you will have very happy fans.

  7. DirecTV will never lose Sunday Ticket because they make tons of money off it and they know people like me will walk once they lose it. How else do you think they can give it away to new customers if you sign a two year agreement?

  8. Put it on Netflix, YouTube, or Amazon Instant Video so that all NFL fans, not just those that have DirecTV, can get the Sunday Ticket. Netflix and Amazon already have the infrastructure needed to control access to the content, and they already provide access to a multitude of consoles and devices, so fans can watch it on the devices they likely already have. My preference would be Netflix because it is supported on more devices than Amazon, but there’s nothing that says it can’t be on both.

    It’s time for the NFL to do something fan friendly, and making the Sunday Ticket available to a broad audience is the right thing to do.

  9. Really wish they would make it available through multiple channels like Online, Apple TV, phone, tablet, you can get it wherever you’re at, that’s the future, not making people put up dishes everywhere.

  10. Screw the NFL and their anti-consumer behavior. Always choosing the worst companies for exclusivity deals for the sake of more money.

  11. I guess I just don’t see how keeping it off two of the three biggest providers (Verizon, Comcast) can possibly be more profitable than opening it up. No one said anything about Netflix, but what about allowing Verizon, Comcast and other providers to have a package they can sell as well?

  12. Cable and satellite are yesterday’s technology. If it weren’t for the NFL, DTV would go out of business within a few years, or, in the least, be driven into a niche of providing TV service where it’s otherwise unavailable. It’s understandable why DTV needs the NFL, because without it, they’re completely unnecessary for most people.

    The sooner the NFL realizes it can make far more money selling games directly to consumers over the internet, the better off we’ll all be.

  13. Please don’t reach a deal. It’s the only thing keeping me from cutting the cord completely. And I may do it anyways…but please don’t.

  14. Why does the NFL want to have anything exclusive. It’s silly, only 35 million subscribers are with Directtv, plus most renters can’t get sattelite. Seems like they’re missing out on revenue from other cable providers willing to carry the ticket. Dish charges $7 for the redzone channel alone.

  15. This DirecTV monopoly can’t be allowed to continue.

    Why is it that all the other major sports packages, (i.e MLB Extra Innings, NBA League Pass, NHL Center Ice) are available via Time Warner, XFinity, Dish, etc, but NOT the NFL)??

    I dumped DirecTV after 12 years because they SUCK and they should not be allowed to have a monopoly on NFL games, I don’t care how much they spend…

  16. The thought of getting Sunday Ticket through Netflix just got me kind of excited…

    That said, the amount of money the NFL makes off these TV deals is staggering. Between CBS, NBC, FOX, DirecTV, ESPN and its own network, the NFL could nearly sell zero tickets to games all season and still make a profit.

    And it’s all tax free….

  17. If DirecTV wins, the fans lose. You keep mentioning the $1 billion dollars DTV pays the league. The NFL could get that and more by allowing a broader consumer base to access its product.

  18. I hope this doesn’t happen, I’d like options other than DirecTV, which I cannot get at my home because tall trees in my neighbors yard are in the way.

  19. Would love to see the Sunday Ticket market open to all (or at least multiple) cable and satellite carriers. It would certainly drop the price.

    DirecTV loves to cut prices for new customers on the Sunday Ticket package, but they won’t do a thing for returning customers. With more and more games being moved away from Sunday for the NFL’s own network, the Sunday Ticket is starting to not be worth the cost.

  20. The NFL could make WAY more than 1 billion dollars if they opened up their games on Sunday, and also made them available online via streaming.

    Heck, they might make 1 billion a YEAR.

  21. I swear if the NFL goes back to directv, I’m going to start boycotting them. I had directv just so I could watch nfl network, but the company was so bad, I dropped directv and just started going to bars to watch the games. The NFL doesn’t give a crap about its fans anymore and will go wherever the money is the highest.

  22. Not only would it drop the price on a per-consumer basis, but it would also equal more profits in the NFL’s pockets to let this deal end.

    Let’s say the NFL comes to terms with DirecTV on a deal that now pays the NFL $1.5 billion. Guess what happens to your Sunday Ticket price? Should go up by about 50% or somewhere near that.

    If they let the deal expire, they may be able to get twice that money from various providers, and more than likely it would result in a reduced price for the consumer because DirecTV would no longer have a monopoly on the product and would have to compete with cable, Netflix, Amazon, etc.

  23. Directv wants exclusive rights to Sunday Ticket because every football fan in the country who moves out of his local team’s viewing area has only one choice to be able to watch all of his teams’ games that aren’t nationally televised – Directv and Sunday Ticket. Lots of fans move every year, so it gives Directv a steady source of new subscribers. Also, people who have Directv and move will stay with them in their new city so they can continue to watch their team.

    I’m speaking from personal experience here.

  24. I personally like DirecTV, but i do not like the fact that new customers get this product for a deeply discounted price, yet i who have purchased it for many years, keep having to pay rising rates.

  25. I would like to see this opened up to all providers but I don’t expect the NFL to do the right thing. Most of the time, they don’t.

  26. If Goodell is a true money hungry goon, he needs to open up the Sunday ticket to the masses. Selling it as a PPV or season tickets. NFL could be making a buttload of cash doing this.

  27. I had Sunday Ticket and it was good. Personally I like NFL Redzone. All football for like 7 hours, no commercials, and you get to see all the exciting plays and it goes thru all the teams. No, you can’t watch every play of your team but even better its only 10$ a month thru my cable provider!

  28. I hope they make changes, so that people can use their own providers and get the upgrade package. It is stupid to make it exclusive to one provider that locks out the provider choices that all Americans want to be able to make.
    Its like….
    its like….
    its like ObamaCare for football…. :-((

    Fix it, don’t make the same mistake twice!

  29. I love DirecTV. Best sports coverage in the nation, pretty much all in High Def too. Please don’t resort to streaming. I don’t like the way sports look when streamed, plus it’s hard to jump around from my game to the game mix during commercials if it was on the computer.

  30. Kids will be asking us “What was TV, is that like Twitter” in 20 years. Already the NFL has reached a deal with Twitter, and eventually every big play will be posted realtime to your feed.

  31. McFaddensPulledHammy says: Dec 13, 2013 10:42 AM

    DirecTV will never lose Sunday Ticket because they make tons of money off it and they know people like me will walk once they lose it. How else do you think they can give it away to new customers if you sign a two year agreement?

    Just plain wrong Directv admits that it is only making 700 million on football so that’s a 300 million loss every year, they don’t keep NFL for the money they keep it to get customers to take other packages from them, but football will go up to 1.5 billion this year and that might be a hard sell to the board of directors at DTV!!!

  32. I don’t care if they go to cable or internet or both. But get it off satellite only. Everyone I know with satellite hates it because the service is disrupted in any kind of in climate weather, even a medium rain. I will never get direct tv. I will buy a slingbox & hook it to my parents tv so I can watch titans games.

  33. I believe that the Direct TV “Storybook Fairy” may find that the injury that put the fairy on “Injured Reserve” may be a career ending one.

  34. Sunday Ticket is only marginally limited to DirecTV. You can stream the service through PlayStation, something I’m sure will continue on the PS4 (and maybe even possibly the new XBox).

    I don’t want anything changing about Sunday Ticket. I’ve had it for seven of the last eight years (a year of Comcast after a move-Ugh!) and DirecTV does it right.

  35. DirecTV actually loses money on the Sunday Ticket, it’s used more for marketing to get new subscribers. Personally though, I think keeping it exclusive with DTV is a dumb business move as more and more media is available across more platforms. And that’s where it gets tricky if the NFL reaches a deal with Google or Netflix because cable providers are trying to get those video services added to their cable service. And for you guys whining about new customers getting a temporary discount while you pay full price, shut the hell up. Congratulations you pay for services you ordered! What a novel concept!

  36. Used to have DirecTv cuz I love watching every second of as many games as I can. Then they wanted to charge an outrageous amount for the 2nd year and you’re not even guaranteed to be able to watch it. If you have bad weather or snow signal goes our. Its dumb to pay all that money for something only to have it whose out by weather.

  37. I only get DirecTV for NFL – I advocated that the NFL make this available on a pay per view basis to via all providers: DirecTV/ATT/Comcast/Verizon.

    Considering the number of thumbs down I got I can only assume other fans don’t want this capability. I don’t see why as I would gladly take advantage of this. It would enable more people to give money to the NFL and allow them to only pay for the games they want to see.

    Then again maybe the average NFL fan wants all games or nothing.

  38. I’d gleefully pay $300 for SD if it were on cable or internet. But I will never give a satellite company my money. However, it is possible to get the direct tv SD online only without dtv cable. You simply have to demonstrate that your home is not able to use dtv for whatever reason. Like a tree or house or mountain blocking the direction in needs to point.

  39. $1 billion a year. No wonder my directv bill is so high. I had Time Warner for the last 10 years, but this year switched to directv because of the NFL Sunday ticket, and Time Warner is superior to directv in every way, with the exception of the availability of the NFL Sunday ticket. I think the NFL would make a lot more money if they would negotiate the rights with all the cable and sattelite providers. However, without the Sunday ticket Directv would go under because everyone who has directv specifically for the ticket would switch to a better, less expensive provider.

  40. Directv is a beast. Crystal clear HD, always reliable, and a DVR to record games when I can’t watch it live. For all the people that think the NFL should let any and everybody broadcast their games because they can make more money—-get a clue about how business works. The more outlets they make their product available to, the less valuable it becomes to those outlets. How much do you think a Directv is going to pay if they know someone else can show the same game too? Hint: it won’t be anywhere close to a billion. You don’t think the NFL knows this? You don’t think the owners, who happen to be smart business owners, know this? They make big money off Directv because it is an exclusive product. Sorry, but letting multiple providers carry it would definitely drive down prices for the consumer but would also drive down profits for the owners. It would be the watering down effect and the owners aren’t going to let that happen.

  41. blindzebras – You’re dead wrong on that one. While the DirecTV subscriber base is a very big market, exclusivity to that base alone is staggeringly low for something as big as the NFL. I would be surprised if DirecTV even had a 25% market share in this country.

    Opening NFL Sunday Ticket up to the other 75% would be a guaranteed winner for the NFL’s profits. Prices for the consumer would decrease, but not as much as you’d think. People are paying $300/year for this, and the cable companies are not in the business of giving the consumer a good deal anyway – they’re going to keep that price as close to the current $300 as possible. I’d be shocked if a company like Time Warner would offer it for any less than $250, actually.

    You’re right that DirecTV would pay a ton less for if if it weren’t exclusive. But let’s say they paid half what they pay today for it, so $500 million. You don’t think the NFL could make up at LEAST the other $500 million by getting their product to the other 75% of the country?

    Come on, man!

  42. Only an idiot would rather stream the games over the computer or crappy netflix than watch the games on a big screen HD TV. Directv is great and so much better than ComCrap or At&T. I’ve had no issues with DirecTV for 15 years so some of you must not be too bright because the service is the best. Comcast has had at least 7 rate increases in that time while mine has stayed roughly the same and I get just about all channels. Sunday Ticket goes to cable the cost of cable will be higher than having tickets to the home team. Cable sucks.

  43. Sunday Ticket is cool, but it’s way too expensive. It’s bad enough that a 60 minute game takes 3.5 hours. There’s not enough time in the day. For my money, Redzone is the best alternative.

  44. Break the exclusivity and give people a choice!!!

    Put it on Amazon Prime, ChromeCast, AppleTV AND DirecTV.

    I don’t have DirecTV in my house and my wife refuses to put up a dish (I agree with her, cable is much more convenient).

    I also disagree with the Comcast/Xfinity comments. What about those of us that live outside of a Comcast area but still want Sunday Ticket? Currently we could get DirecTV if we wanted to…but not if the exclusivity deal went to Comcast.

    How about this: Put a TEAM BASED subscription model on the 3 or 4 biggest Internet carriers (Amazon Prime, AppleTV, Netflix, Chromecast/YouTube) and allow us to buy a package that would include the broadcast of all of that TEAMs games? I live in Arizona but am a die hard Bears fan. I would absolutely LOVE to pay Amazon and the NFL for the opportunity to watch all 16 of their games rather than 3 or 4 that MIGHT be broadcast.

    Come on NFL. Open your minds to something more. This is the 21st century, embrace the technology available to you. I’d bet that you’d get a lot more than a $1B if you went this route.

  45. SmilesAustin…. You still don’t get it. It’s NOT about Directv. It’s about what the market will bare. The owners know if they let multiple providers carry the same game their price plummets. Directv is not going to pay 500M for something someone else can show too. It’s why 1 carrier shows the SB. It’s why 1 carrier shows the WS or the NBA championship or any of a # of exclusive events. It’s the way the owner(s) get the most money.

    Come On man….. Get a clue.

  46. Isn’t the same thing coming to the new Xbox where you get every game that weekend and can watch them back during the week or something?

  47. Here’s why it ends up back on Direct TV…

    1) The service provider provides the infrastructure. The significance of that: not everybody has bandwidth or net connections for internet providers, not everyone has the same cable company, nor is the same cable company got penetration into the needed markets. BUT, DirectTV is everywhere across the nation (no restrictions on them as a provider), and they give you with the infrastructure (the dish) which means you don’t worry about your net speeds;
    2) The NFL only has to negotiate with one company, a bid deal when you actually have to sit down and work out the terms;
    3) DirectTV gets an exclusive, for which they can charge accordingly.

    But #1 above is most important…

  48. Open market?
    Free market?

    These are terms that people are using. I must wonder if the same people feel the same way about Obamacare.
    It seems that people want free market competition unless it is for a product that can be used for political purposes such as healthcare and personal defense.

    Get a grip people and learn what LIBERTY is all about.

  49. DTV’s service is reliable and their NFL Ticket apps are top notch, which you get free (the moment they charge I leave). DTV and Sunday Ticket is expensive but I choose to view as season tickets to the entire league, with the advantages of seating comfort, no lines for the can and unlimited food and beverage. I love the snow games, so long as I’m not sitting in it.

  50. We all know how greedy the NFL is ?… Why? Would they limit themselves to just directv ?.. Makes no sense … What if apple kept the IPhone with AT&T?.. Makes no sense NFL had to know this

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