As it stands, football will still be kicking off September 10th with the Texans squaring off with the Chiefs for what's expected to be a limited season in which several players have already dropped out and precautions will be serious. Fan attendance will be limited and under strict social distancing guidelines, though, so we looked into the best ways to watch from the safety of your home through one of the following popular streaming services.
While planning your upcoming home viewing schedule, don't forget to enhance the experience with the best snacks possible, crisped up in one of our favorite air fryers we researched over here. If you’re feeling lazier than that, you can always check out some food delivery services as well.
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For those who haven’t ditched cable for full streaming purposes, NFL Sunday Ticket is still the best option with the most accessibility for superfans who want the full interactive experience. As marketed, you can watch “any out-of-market Sunday game (select international games excluded) live on your tablet and other devices†, track your NFL.com fantasy league and favorite players, get highlight alerts and play them with a tap,” with a full range of devices on which it’s available listed here. That means if a game isn’t deemed important enough to make it onto your regular channels, you’ll still be able to watch it–nothing is too small here. It’s certainly not the most affordable option when considering up front costs, but if you’re the type of viewer who wants all 150 or so games planned at your fingertips, the $293.94 price tag is a pittance to invest for a season’s worth of entertainment.
Lackluster sports coverage has been a hindrance for many when it comes to cutting out cable and going for full streaming, so companies like Hulu is a service looking to blend the two in some sort of harmonious best-of-both-worlds situation with Hulu Live TV. Some of the perks include more than 65 top channels (sports and news highlighted in their sales pitch), personalized profiles and channel lineups, “Hassle-Free TV” meaning you won’t need a box or any other tools and there won’t be secret fees–your $54.99 gets you everything you need. When it comes to football, you’ll have access to “major college and pro leagues, including the NCAA, NBA, NHL, NFL, the English Premier League, and more.”
You can enter your zip code on the site to find out which specific channels are offered in your area and if this sounds like a good plan but you’re not quite sold yet, a one week free trial will introduce you to what’s available and let you decide if this is enough coverage for you throughout the season.
YouTube TV implores you to “cut the cord and save $700 a year,” but what do those savings entail for sports lovers? Like Hulu’s model, you get a customized watching experience that you can experience anywhere on a variety of devices and more than 70 channels will be at your fingertips depending on what’s available in your zip code. A DVR system with unlimited storage means you can build your dream television library that will store for nine months and is fully specified to each account’s preferences, and with six of those allowed per household, you won’t have to duke it out over who curates what because you can all make your own entertainment decisions.
FuboTV was designed with the sports viewer in mind with three tiers available starting at just under $60 a month (plus a free trial, naturally) for 108 channels with over 130 events streaming in 4K along with 500 hours of DVR space and a family share plan of three screen availability. While focused on bringing you the premium sports content, the less football-inclined viewers in your household will be thrilled with the huge library of streaming content as well with everything from 90-Day Fiance to America’s Got Talent ready to stream on all your devices, up to two at a time. If you need a third stream for a house divided, you can tack that on for just $5.99 a month to make sure everyone under your roof is happy.
The casual fan will appreciate the low cost and Thursday night focus of Amazon Prime’s recent acquisition of exclusive streaming rights to select NFL games made available to existing customers (which surely many reading this are) that throws one dedicated Saturday game this coming season on the platform. What that means is if two teams play in a specific market, the game will be visible to both teams’ local markets but those living elsewhere will have to have Prime service in order to watch it anywhere else in the world.
“We are thrilled to renew our Thursday Night Football deal with the NFL, and are excited to expand our relationship to include exclusive global streaming rights to an additional regular season game in 2020,” the global sport video VP Marie Donoghue said in a press release (as reported by The Verge) on the subject, ensuring all 11 NFL Thursday games plus the Saturday game will be viewable on all Prime Video and Twitch platforms available to subscribers.