- Amazon and the NFL are working on a deal for exclusive rights to Thursday Night Football.
- The deal could cost Amazon $1 billion per year, the WSJ reported.
- Amazon has been moving into sports streaming for years and held streaming rights to Thursday games.
- Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.
Amazon and the NFL are close to signing a new deal that would have Amazon carry some football games exclusively, The Wall Street Journal reported.
The potential deal would give Amazon exclusive streaming rights to a “significant number” of Thursday night games, according to WSJ. If the deal goes through, Amazon could pay up to $1 billion per year for Thursday night games. Games would not be available on television except in the home markets of the two teams playing. Amazon has had streaming rights for Thursday games since 2017, but previously those games have also been televised on network TV.
Fox currently holds the rights to Thursday night games through the 2022-2023 season, so a deal with Amazon would not go into effect until after that. Fox pays $660 million annually for the broadcast rights for these games, and Amazon pays between $75 million and $100 million for streaming rights, WSJ reported.
In late 2020, Amazon streamed its first exclusive NFL game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Arizona Cardinals. The game could have been like a test run for future deals, with the streaming giant preparing a week of original NFL programming ahead of the Saturday game. The audience on that game was under five million viewers, far lower than the average 14.9 million.
Despite a test run that wasn’t particularly successful, Amazon continues to move ahead into sports streaming. It has streamed MLB games, the Women’s Tennis Association, English Premier League, and more. Amazon-owned Twitch has made deals with the NBA and Formula One.
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