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NFL, DirecTV Extend Deals

Mar 23, 2009  •  Post A Comment

The National Football League said it extended its exclusive deal with DirecTV for its Sunday Ticket package of out-of-market games through the 2014 season.
DirecTV also extended its carriage of the NFL Network.
Cable operators, who want a piece of the Sunday Ticket package, have resisted carrying the NFL Network.
The NFL’s current $700 million-a-year deal with DirecTV was set to expire in 2010. Terms of the new agreement were not disclosed.
The NFL said it is creating two new products for football fans who do not subscribe to DirecTV. One will provide access to the out-of-market Sunday Ticket games via broadband to consumers who cannot receive DirecTV, either because of poor sightlines to the satellite or because they live in an apartment building. The league said the service will begin no later than 2012.
The NFL is also starting a “Red Zone Channel” that will feature live-action cut-ins from all Sunday afternoon games. This channel will be available to cable, telco and satellite providers, as well as via wireless devices and Internet.
The Red Zone channel is being offered separately from NFL Network, a league spokesman said.
Cable operators not carrying NFL Network might want to carry Red Zone because their competitors are likely to be carrying it.
“The NFL Sunday Ticket service has been a part of DirecTV since our first year of operation and is one of the defining characteristics of our best-in-class positioning,” said Chase Carey, president and CEO of DirecTV Group. “This latest extension allows us to retain and broaden our most popular sports subscription service. Through our wireless offering to NFL Sunday Ticket customers and the new broadband service to non-customers, we’re now able to expand the reach to even more NFL fans everywhere.”

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