The popular NFL Sunday Ticket package is leaving DirectTV and heading to YouTube TV.
The NFL announced the partnership with YouTube TV, owned by Google, on Thursday. It follows years of speculation about which media company would be next to own the rights to Sunday Ticket, which broadcasts all out-of-market NFL games to fans.
NFL Sunday Ticket launched in 1994 and has been distributed on DirecTV’s satellite service since it began. Starting next season, NFL Sunday Ticket will be available as an add-on package on YouTube TV and standalone on YouTube Primetime Channels.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The Wall Street Journal reported that YouTube will pay an average price of roughly $2 billion a year for the rights to the seven-year package.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said the deal with YouTube will “usher in a new era of how fans across the United States watch and follow the NFL.”
YouTube TV, a subscription streaming service with more than 100 channels, has been expanding its live sports content in recent years. In 2020, the NFL started streaming NFL Network and NFL RedZone to YouTube TV subscribers.
The poaching of Sunday Ticket from DirecTV also represents a major boost to YouTube TV, one of the many online television services that seeks to replace cable and satellite television.
The NFL is the most popular live television content in America, and the deal is the latest sign that live sports is shifting from cable to streaming platforms. Amazon (AMZN) and Apple (AAPL) have also both struck major sports deals in recent years.