Sunday Ticket

YouTubeTV Lands NFL “Sunday Ticket” – Dad’s Dance With Their Wallets

It’s a major deal many NFL fathers have been waiting to hear for 10-20+ years. DirecTV is out and YouTubeTV is in! Two of the top companies in their respective industries, the NFL and Google’s parent company, Alphabet Inc., announced late last week that they are joining forces in a deal with a figure upwards of $2 billion per year for the exclusive rights to broadcast the “NFL Sunday Ticket” starting in 2023. 

With the NFL looking to secure their TV revenue for the next decade, Google gains more ammunition in the Streaming Wars to become a powerful force in the market. This deal will bring together the technical capabilities of Google, allowing them to innovate new ways to produce and broadcast the NFL in the future.

This deal comes following other parties such as Apple, Disney, and Amazon placing their respective bid that tops the annual $1.5 billion DirecTV paid annually, but the NFL closed with Google, as the League favored their distribution and production plans. All parties involved could pay, but it was all about pitching their product, capabilities, and future scalability. Hulu, we know you may have live sports, but this was a major blow. The NFL just gave Google the keys to a Ferrari in this race. 

What is YouTubeTV?

YouTubeTV is a subscription-based streaming service from Google. It offers live streaming of television channels and on-demand content from major networks, including ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, ESPN, and more. The service is available through web browsers, as well as through apps for mobile devices and streaming boxes. YouTubeTV also includes a cloud-based DVR for recording content and an unlimited library of content from YouTube Red Originals. Subscribers are charged a flat monthly fee of $64.99, which includes access to all of the channels and features available with YouTubeTV. This fee also allows up to six users to access the service with their own personalized profiles. 

YouTubeTV also offers add-on packages that give access to premium networks like Showtime and Starz. These packages are available for an additional fee. We can only wait to see how much Google will be looking to add on to this bundle. For reference the MLB.TV monthly pass, you pay $24.99 per month.

NFL Sunday Ticket is a subscription-based package of television programming that provides viewers with access to all NFL games airing out-of-market each Sunday. It is offered exclusively by DirecTV, a satellite television provider. The NFL Sunday Ticket business model works by allowing customers to purchase the service on a yearly basis. Customers can choose between a variety of packages, ranging from the basic “Sunday Ticket” package to the “Max” package, which includes additional features. Customers can also opt for the “Stream” package, which allows them to access the content on their mobile device. The service also provides access to the Red Zone Channel and other NFL Network programming, as well as the ability to watch multiple games at once. The NFL Sunday Ticket business model has proven to be successful, as the company has managed to retain a large base of loyal customers.

With roughly 13.5 million subscribers, we are going to have to observe the number of cancelations. That number was near 20 million just five years ago. Just goes to show that the streaming era is just getting started. With YouTubeTV sitting at just 5 million users, ahead of their competitor Hulu Live’s 4.4 million, the NFL & Google must see this 7 million customer gap as an opportunity to lock Gen Z as a client before the competition steps in.

Production & Gambling

Andrew Siciliano is an American sports broadcaster and television host who currently serves as the host of the NFL Sunday Ticket program on DirecTV. He began hosting DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket RedZone in 2005 and has been the main host ever since.

Now that DirecTV’s production of NFL RedZone will come to an end, we are unsure of what the future holds for Siciliano as the host. Will YouTube create a new deal with him or seek other talent to host the show? With that being said, I would be tremendously disappointed if Google does not find a way to present the OG Red Zone host in the future.
In terms of the future, we will have to wait and see the innovation Google provides in terms of broadcasting the sport. With 2022 not over, sports betting has seen $80 billion wagered this year. Will Google tap into that market and potentially partner with these Sportsbooks to allow users to bet right from their TV’s and interact with live lines? With five more states launching legal sports betting in 2022, this figure may see a steady increase as Sportsbooks have become more accessible to those around the world. Kind of amazing how gambling was viewed as taboo in previous generations, but now it is being implemented in many facets of sports at a very fast rate.

Final Thoughts

Customers are resistant as they may feel uncertain or insecure about the future adjusting to new ideas or situations. Our instinct is to stick with what we know and resist any disruption. But in terms of this disruption to your life, think about it: less hardware, no phony contracts and you can use YouTubeTV only for the duration of the season. DirecTV locked customers in for the whole year paying for at least the basic package for the whole year. What makes Google more attractive is that you can suspend your membership and come back at the start of the next season, but their hope is they hook you forever. This deal is another huge leap towards the death of standard cable television and the rise of streaming becoming the mainstream way to consume Live TV.


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