The National Football League has the most lucrative set of television contracts of any major sport in the United States, but even though that is the case, it is not always easy for fans to watch their favorite teams play. Living close to your team’s home city or television market is one way to ensure that you can see every game, but there are some options to tune in to or stream out-of-market games.
With week one of the 2020 season upon us, here is a primer on how to get legal access to watch NFL games.
In the United States
If you live within your team’s home market or a particular game is on your local FOX, CBS, or NBC affiliate, you’re in luck. Option one is to hook up an HD antenna and pull your local channel in over the air. Another great option is to subscribe to a streaming television service, which should provide you with access to your local channels and ESPN for Monday Night Football games. A paid streaming service like fuboTV should have you covered, and other streaming providers like Youtube TV, Sling, and Hulu Live may be options as well. One additional option are apps like the NFL app and Yahoo! Sports app, which offer free live streaming of any games in your local broadcast area in addition to national broadcasts.
If you live outside of the Packers’ market, however, you will need to check your local TV listings or our weekly Game Primers, which will have links to broadcast maps generated by 506sports.com, to see if the Packers’ upcoming game is available on your local channels. It is unlikely that every Packers game will be available locally if you are out-of-market, however, so here are your other options.
NFL Sunday Ticket
The easiest way to get Sunday Ticket is to have or sign up for DirecTV, the satellite television service now owned by AT&T. New subscribers may be eligible for a free year of Sunday Ticket; existing subscribers are eligible to add the package to their existing service in two tiers — a base tier for about $300 (which covers all out-of-market games) or the “Max” tier for about $400, which includes the NFL Red Zone channel.
Access to the DirecTV package also allows subscribers to stream Sunday Ticket games through their phones or internet-connected devices in addition to through their home TV receivers.
Under the branding of “NFLSundayTicket.TV,” AT&T is now offering Sunday Ticket as a standalone streaming service to certain eligible customers who do not have DirecTV. Eligibility generally covers people in two categories: first, people located inside many major television markets and secondly, those in certain apartment buildings that do not allow satellite dishes. No Wisconsin markets are included in the former option, but that should not be an issue as most viewers in the major Wisconsin TV markets should be able to get Packers games over the air anyway.
Click here for a list of markets that are eligible and click here to officially check your address’s eligibility. Prices are the same as above for DirecTV subscribers: $300 for the standard package or $400 for the Max package.
Individuals with a valid university student ID are eligible for a discounted subscription to the NFLSundayTicket.TV streaming service at just $100 for the season. Click here to verify eligibility.
Unfortunately, Sunday Ticket is the only legal game in town when it comes to personal streaming of live games inside the US. Unfortunately, the only real option if you cannot subscribe to Sunday Ticket would be to find a local restaurant, bar, or other establishment that has access to it. Of course, in a COVID-affected world, this may be less realistic — or even impossible in some areas — but there are unfortunately no other legal alternatives for live games besides the above.
NFL Game Pass
US-based fans can subscribe to NFL Game Pass, which has full replays of every NFL game. However, it does not allow subscribers to watch games live — the only broadcasts they can access live are radio broadcasts. Subscriptions run $99 for a full year.
Outside the USA
Game Pass International
While Game Pass in the United States does not offer live game broadcasts, the international version of the service does, adding live games to the rest of the package. You must access the service from outside of the USA to use it, and the service typically runs about $200 US. Start by logging on to the Game Pass website from outside of the US or download the Game Pass International app from the App Store or Google Play.
The DAZN service provides eligible subscribers accessing from Canada with access to Sunday Ticket and the international version of GamePass. This service comes with a $20 per month fee or $150 for the entire year, and there is a free one-month trial available for new subscribers. (Prices are in Canadian dollars, of course.)
If you are aware of additional legal methods for streaming games, please feel free to drop them into the comments and we will update the list above as necessary. Note that no illegal streams, links, or websites will be posted or allowed to remain in the comments.