NFL Sunday Ticket: Wikis


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NFL Sunday Ticket is an Out-of-Market Sports Package that broadcasts National Football League regular season games unavailable on local affiliates. It carries all regional games produced by FOX and CBS. The ideal customer of this package is presumed (based on advertisements) to be a fan of a team who is unable to see their team on local television because they do not reside in that team's market. The package is available in the United States exclusively on DirecTV, in Canada on several satellite and cable providers, in Mexico and Latin America on Sky TV, in South America and the Caribbean on DirecTV Latin America, and several cable providers in The Bahamas and Bermuda.


United States: DirecTV

Currently, American satellite provider DIRECTV has exclusive rights to NFL Sunday Ticket in the United States until the contract expires at the end of the 2014 season.[1] Prior to the NFL's latest television deal, other satellite and cable providers were allowed to bid on the rights to carry NFL Sunday Ticket if they agreed to carry the NFL Network. However, DIRECTV still won exclusivity for the package, bidding over $700 million a year to do so. This has long been one of DIRECTV's selling points to consumers, and thus likely explains the large premium they pay for the privilege. Still, the NFL has indicated that another reason they accepted DIRECTV's bid was to limit the availability of the product so that the television networks and especially their local affiliates would be protected. In particular, Sunday Ticket viewers do not count towards local Nielsen ratings; thus offering Sunday Ticket on cable might cost CBS and FOX affiliates millions of dollars in lost revenue from local commercial breaks (as opposed to national ads sold by the networks). In turn, affiliates help subsidize the networks' programming costs.

Since the launch of new satellites, DIRECTV no longer drops other HD feeds to broadcast the NFL Sunday Ticket games in HD. It was rumored that some of NewsCorp's foreign satellite companies, such as BSkyB, would eventually offer NFL Sunday Ticket, as NewsCorp owned DIRECTV at the time it reached its most recent contract for the package and has long distributed games outside North America. However, given the fact that NewsCorp sold its 40% share of DIRECTV to Liberty Media in February 2008[2], this seems increasingly unlikely.


Contract extension

On March 23, 2009, it was announced that DirecTV paid $4 billion to extend its exclusive contract for NFL Sunday Ticket until 2014.[3] After the 2014-15 NFL season, DirecTV will have had exclusive U.S. rights for the package for 20 straight seasons.

The contract extension also calls for the establishment of an online version of Sunday Ticket, similar to the existing Supercast, for non-DirecTV subscribers by 2012 as well as a "Red Zone" channel to be carried on cable and telco television systems.[4] So far, Comcast, Dish Network, Verizon FiOS, AT&T Uverse, Blue Ridge Communications, BendBroadband and Buckeye Cable have picked up the new Red Zone channel.[5][6][7][8]


See also: NFL local television blackout policies

If a game the viewer wishes to watch is blacked out in their home market because it's not sold out, the game remains blacked out on NFL Sunday Ticket. Any other game televised locally is also blacked out. (viewers must watch them instead on their local FOX or CBS affiliates)[9] Games joined or switched away from in progress usually have their blackout status altered immediately.


The Superfan package is an extra package which allows subscribers to watch up to 12 NFL games in high definition (and as of 2009-2010 season every game in HD) and offers extra features not available in the regular Sunday Ticket. This was added in 2005 and includes these three features:

Game Mix
This channel shows 8 games at once, along with the game's score, time left in the game, and the quarter that the game is in under the game's feed. Starting in 2008 it can be seen in high-definition.
Red Zone Channel
This channel acts as a viewer's "remote control" and switches around various NFL games as plays of interest occur (scoring plays, key turnovers, etc.) The coverage is hosted by Fox's Andrew Siciliano and has been offered on some airlines, such as Jet Blue.
As of the 2007 season, this channel is provided in HD.
Short Cuts
This 2-channel duo recaps every NFL game in 30 minutes or less, including games not available on NFL Sunday Ticket because they were televised locally or blacked out. One channel shows AFC games while the other shows NFC games. These highlights are made available on Sunday nights and are shown continuously until Tuesday morning.

In addition, beginning in 2008 Superfan will include a new feature called Supercast, which enables subscribers to stream live games on their computers. Starting in 2009, Supercast is available to non-DirecTV subscribers in Manhattan who are unable to receive satellite television in their apartments because their landlord won't let them put up a satellite dish, or because high rise buildings block satellite reception. The cost is $50 more than those with DirecTV service.[10]

Highlights on Demand

DirecTV subscribers with interactive DVRs receive a three to four minute recap of every NFL Sunday Ticket game on demand with this feature, via channel 1005.


NFL Sunday Ticket was launched in 1994 and was available on both DirecTV (which had launched just months earlier) and on C-band and Ku-band satellites, for which the receiving dishes are larger in size. Within several years, the service became available on various cable systems in Canada as well.

The success of Sunday Ticket led to the launch of other pay-per-view out-of-market sports packages across the spectrum of professional and college sports.

International Distribution

NFL Sunday Ticket is also available in Canada, Mexico, Latin America, Bermuda and The Bahamas.


In Canada, NFL Sunday Ticket has been made available on a non-exclusive basis to the following satellite and cable providers:

The lack of exclusivity for any provider is due to Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) regulations.

Mexico and Central America

South America and Caribbean


  • CableVision


See also


External links


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