Facebook wants more live video on its platform, and it has its eye on quite the prize: streaming rights to the NFL’s Thursday Night Football. Multiple companies have been vying for the sure-to-be expensive honor, and on Monday, Facebook’s VP of partnerships, Dan Rose, confirmed in an interview with Variety that the big-time social media network is one of them.
Amazon and Verizon are among Facebook’s competition, but no decision has been announced so far. Rose revealed that his company is in talks with the National Football League, but he didn’t give any hints about how those discussions are going. All he had to say about whether or not Facebook would land a deal was a vague, “We’ll see.”
Becoming the home of Thursday Night Football‘s live-stream will cost a pretty penny. For context, the two-year TV broadcast deal that CBS and NBC reached with the NFL will reportedly cost the networks a combined $900 million. With fierce competition for the over-the-top package, there’s no way the victorious company will get a bargain.
Facebook sees landing Thursday Night Football as fitting in with its efforts to grow Facebook Live. The company is working with various celebrities, athletes, musicians, and more to engage users. With how invested Americans are in professional football and how social sports fandom can be, a deal with the NFL certainly seems like a good fit.
On top of live-streaming games, the social media juggernaut wants to offer additional content, with possibilities including locker room footage and behind-the-scenes action. “There’s a lot of interesting things we can do with sports,” said Rose. He highlighted the massive potential, adding, “There are a lot of different cuts you can imagine.”
We’ll have to wait and see which company emerges from the pile with possession of Thursday Night Football‘s streaming rights.