Amazon Lands Exclusive Rights To Stream NFL Playoff Game Next Season


Amazon’s Prime Video, which is coming off a sizable ratings uptick for Thursday Night Football, has landed rights to exclusively stream an NFL playoff game next January.

The rights deal was confirmed to Deadline by a source familiar with the arrangement. The move follows a successful outing last month by NBCUniversal’s Peacock, which drew 23 million viewers for a stream of the Kansas City Chiefs-Miami Dolphins playoff game. In addition to healthy viewership, the game accounted for nearly one-third of all internet traffic on the Saturday night it was played, and NBCU parent Comcast declared it the most streamed event in U.S. history.

Financial terms were not disclosed. NBCU paid $110 million for the rights to last month’s game and held talks with the NFL to do a follow-up on Peacock next season. The source told Deadline the ball bounced Prime Video’s way instead because of contractual thresholds exceeded by the Thursday night streams.

While more than a few traditional TV viewers and football fans were irked by the streaming-only development, it is in step with the direction of sports overall. While NBCU and Comcast have not disclosed any sign-up numbers related to the playoff game, research firm Antenna said 2.8 million subscribers came aboard in the period leading up to kickoff.

Streaming has generally been a simulcast arm of sports broadcasts on linear TV, as will be the case with Sunday’s Super Bow. Increasingly, though, more events are heading online. Major League Baseball two years ago reached pacts with Apple, Prime Video and Peacock for exclusive packages. Major League Soccer’s games can now only be seen on an app the MLS created in partnership with Apple. WWE’s Raw franchise, a significant sports entertainment property, will move from its longtime cable TV home on USA Network to Netflix starting next January under a 10-year, $5 billion deal.

The Wall Street Journal had the first report on the Prime Video-NFL deal.


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