The sports world has long waited on the National Football League to announce a streaming service that allows you to watch any game you want from anywhere. Today is not that day. But the NFL has made NFL+ official, with the service replacing the older NFL Game Pass service while incorporating the features.
The bad news? A good number of those features used to be free, and they’re not anymore.
NFL+ has two tiers. The first we’ll call “regular,” or just NFL+. It costs $5 a month or $40 a year. Then there’s NFL+ Premium, which runs $10 a month or $80 a year. There’s a free trial either way. Here’s how the two services break down:
- Live local and primetime games on phones and tablets
- Live out-of-market preseason games on all devices
- Live game audio from every game
- On-demand (and ad-free) NFL library programming
NFL+ Premium features
- Everything from the main NFL+ subscription
- Full game replays (ad-free) on all devices
- Condensed game replays (ad-free) on all devices
- Coaches film (ad-free), including “All-22”
“Today marks an important day in the history of the National Football League with the launch of NFL+,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a press release. “The passionate and dedicated football fans are the lifeblood of the NFL, and being able to reach and interact with them across multiple platforms is incredibly important to us. We look forward to continuing to grow NFL+ and deepening our relationship with fans across all ages and demographics, providing them access to a tremendous amount of NFL content, including the most valuable content in the media industry: live NFL games.”
What NFL+ is not is the holy grail of NFL streaming, also known as NFL Sunday Ticket. That’s the high-priced subscription that lets you watch any game as it’s happening. That’s the real money-maker for whomever has the rights to distribute it, which has been DirecTV in past years. Every tech company you can think of has reportedly has been in the running for it as the rights come up for renewal, however, so we’re all still holding out for that.
So it remains to be seen if Sunday Ticket might at some point become a part of NFL+, or if this will remain a sort of poor man’s streaming subscription. It’s better than nothing, of course, and if it includes Monday Night Football (which requires ESPN) and Thursday Night Football (which Amazon has the rights to), you might actually come out ahead, so long as you don’t mind watching on a phone or tablet.