With the FCC removing legal protection for the NFL TV blackout policy, the league has doubled-down on satellite TV. News that the NFL renews its DirecTV NFL Sunday Ticket deal for eight more years spread just a few days after the FCC announced its ruling.
The NFL extending its DirecTV agreement shouldn’t surprise anyone, as it’s a cash cow for the league. Reports have put the price tag for the NFL Sunday Ticket agreement at an average of $1.5 billion annually. As in, “per year.”
Across the eight years of this new partnership, that means the NFL will bring in close to $12 billion. For context, the annual GDP (gross domestic product) of Nicaragua is approximately $11.26 billion.
DirecTV has become a staple for NFL fans wanting to watch out-of-market games. The satellite provider has carried NFL games live for nearly two decades. Its existing contract expires at the end of the year, which put an onus on the NFL to work something out.
DirecTV’s existing deal averaged $1 billion per year, meaning its expanded eight-year agreement has a 50% premium over.
Fans will be pleased to know the NFL’s new contract with DirecTV provides subscribers expanded access to live-stream NFL Sunday Ticket games on a mobile device. As it does currently, the agreement also lets subscribers watch NFL games free online via broadband Internet service if they subscribe to the MAX package.
Aside from the rights to broadcast games, DirecTV had a lot riding on expanding its NFL deal. AT&T is currently considering a takeover bid for DirecTV. Had the NFL not re-upped wiht DirecTV, AT&T had a clause in its acquisition agreement to walk away from its pending $48.5 billion takeover.
That clause, and the takeover bid’s total value, provides further evidence for the NFL’s market pull. DirecTV’s new NFL deal, on its own, accounts for nearly one-fourth of AT&T’s total takeover bid.