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Impossibly Perfect Sphere
Nov 6, 2002


I do not guarantee that everything I say in this post is going to be 100% correct - poo poo changes. The info below only applies to the United States. I'm not even going to attempt to dissect how the NFL's byzantine broadcast contracts apply to various foreign markets. There are some streaming services I didn't cover like DirectTV Stream because it's stupid and expensive, or some newer ones like Vidgo because I have no idea what the quality or reliability of their service is like.

If I get rid of my cable/sat box. What the hell do I watch stuff on???

There are limitless ways of accessing streaming services. Here are a few of the most common:

Streaming Media Box
Such as an Apple TV, Firestick, Roku or some generic brand. My personal preference is Roku, so as to avoid the Apple/Amazon hegemony. If you are interested in one particular streaming service I highly recommend checking their minimum requirements before purchasing, because some will only work with a specific generation of streaming hardware. For instance, NFL's Gamepass will not work on some of the older Roku devices.

Smart TV
Most of the newer smart TVs are capable of running various streaming service apps. If you have a TV capable of doing this and you don't want to buy any additional hardware great, but don't expect a particularly good experience. While they've made strides in improving their quality, IN GENERAL, most smart TV UI's are pretty lousy and underpowered. Unfortunately they also tend to be the last to receive updates to the streaming app, which can cause performance issues or straight up break the app when the streaming provider makes a change that the app doesn't support.

Game Console
All current generation of consoles can access streaming services. I'm not going to get into which one is best because that turns into a dumb fanboy argument quickly.

Computer/Tablet/Smartphone
All of the services can be accessed via a pc, mac, smartphone or tablet over the internet, obviously.

I just want to watch Redzone!

Streaming Providers
Redzone is available through most of the major streaming providers as an add-on. Examples:
FuboTV ($65/base + $11/add-on) $76/mo
Hulu + Live TV ($65/base + $10/add-on) $75/mo
Sling TV ($35/base + $11/add-on) $46/mo
Youtube TV ($64/base +11/add-on) $75/mo

I have tried all of these services in the past two or three years and in terms of quality, Youtube TV is by far the best, closely followed by FubuTV.

Borrowed Credentials
If you have a friend/relative with a cable or satellite subscription that includes Redzone - and they are willing to share their provider credentials - you can access Redzone via the NFL's app using their credentials.

I want to watch the games available in my local market.

HD Antenna
Good news everyone! There's a simple and affordable way to do this that does not involve reoccurring monthly fees or illegal streams. If you have a TV made in the last ten years you should be able to use an OTA HD antenna. These antennas range wildly in size and price, and your needs will vary depending on where your local station's tower is located and where you can position your antenna. I would suggest starting with a cheap $20 jobbie and seeing how it works. You can use this site to find the location of your local transmitter and determine the best orientation for your antenna to point ( https://www.fcc.gov/media/engineering/dtvmaps ). Ironically in many cases, free OTA HD broadcasts are superior in quality to cable, satellite and streaming broadcasts due to the compression levels those other services use. This will vary based on the equipment your local affiliate uses.

Streaming Providers
The major streaming providers USUALLY include access to local market network affiliates so you can watch games which are broadcast on Fox/CBS/NBC. So those would include...
FuboTV $65/mo
Hulu + Live TV $65/mo
Sling TV $35/mo (DOES NOT INCLUDE CBS!)
Youtube TV $64/mo

Paramount+
For CBS games (IN SOME MARKETS) you can also purchase a subscription to Paramount+ for $5/mo to access your local CBS affiliate.

Borrowed Credentials
If you have a friend/relative with a cable or satellite subscription - and they are willing to share their provider credentials - you can login to the CBS, Fox, or NBC app using their credentials.

Smartphone/Tablet
On most carriers you can stream local market games on your smartphone via the NFL App. The caveat is that this is ONLY available when connected via mobile data. If you have your phone connected to the internet via wifi it will not allow you access to those games.

I want to watch out of market games

Get Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucked
There is no way to LEGALLY stream LIVE out of market National Football League games in the United States of America in the year 2021. Can you loving believe that? DirecTV owns the rights to these games and we are stuck with them until the end of the 2022 season. There is a legal way to watch them with a delay, see NFL GamePass below.

I want to watch Thursday Night Football

Amazon Prime
Weeks 2-16 (with the exception of the Thanksgiving night game) will stream live on Amazon Prime. These are some of the highest quality streams available and also feature additional choices for commentators besides the usual crew. Prime is $119/year.

NFL Network
If you have one of the aforementioned streaming providers with a package that includes NFL Network, you can also watch the games live on NFLN.

Fox
Fox has rights to 11 of the TNF Games. If you have access to FOX via a streaming provider package you can watch the game (unless your local affiliate has opted out of streaming rights for it!).

Borrowed Credentials
If you have a friend/relative with a cable or satellite subscription - and they are willing to share their provider credentials - you can login to the Fox app using their credentials.

I want to watch Monday Night Football, for some dumbass reason

Streaming Providers
ESPN is available through most of the streaming providers, sometimes with the base price sometimes as an add-on.
Youtube TV $64/mo
Hulu + Live TV ($65/mo + $7/mo) $72/mo
FuboTV $65/mo
Sling TV ($35/mo) *Note, ESPN is only included with the Sling TV Orange plan, which does NOT include NBC. Sling's Blue plan includes NBC, but not ESPN. If you want both you gotta fork over $50/mo.

Smartphone/Tablet
On most carriers you can watch MNF on your smartphone via the NFL App. The caveat is that this is ONLY available when connected via mobile data. If you have your phone connected to the internet via wifi it will not allow you access the game.

What's this NFL GamePass thing?

For a yearly price of $100 you can purchase access to GamePass, which includes complete access to all games all season long... hours after they have been played. I have had this service for a couple of seasons, and in my experience it can take anywhere from a couple hours to several hours before a game will be available to watch. Each game comes available in three formats: the complete game, the condensed (runtime just under an hour), and the all 22 coaches view. For the amount of content you can access, it should be a great deal. However the service is ruined by the very poor quality of the streams - low bitrate, high compression, the extreme difficulty in rewinding or fast forwarding and the absolute garbage UI. If you thought Hulu or Disney+ had bad UI just wait until you see GamePass.

Hey times is tough, I don't wanna pay for this poo poo

Illegal streams
I'm not going to link anyone to a source of illegal NFL streams, because that would bite. I'll just say, that these really are only practical for watching on a PC or Mac. You're not going to find an easy way to get this to play on a streaming media box in any reliable way. Even just watching these on your PC is a pain in the rear end. The quality varies widely depending on the who's doing the streaming, and you're going to have to restart the stream at least three or four times per game. You'll also have to navigate through a shitload of popups and nasty redirects. If you insist on trying this option make sure you have Ad Block or uBlock Origin loaded in your browser of choice.

Impossibly Perfect Sphere fucked around with this message at 00:57 on Sep 9, 2021

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AndrewP
Apr 21, 2010



Just wanted to point out that NFL Game Pass has taken away All-22 as part of their "update" and nobody knows if it's actually coming back. It was the best part of Game Pass so don't even bother until they bring it back imo

Impossibly Perfect Sphere
Nov 6, 2002


It's supposed to be back by the start of the regular season, so uh, I guess they have less than 24 hours to get their poo poo straightened out lol.

AndrewP
Apr 21, 2010



https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2021/09/22/nfl-says-all-22-film-is-expected-to-return-on-friday/

The NFL says that All-22 is coming back tomorrow on Game Pass.

Mulaney Power Move
Dec 30, 2004


man...imagine how awesome it would be if amazon prime actually gets nfl sunday ticket in 2022

Nodoze
Aug 17, 2006

If it's only for a night I can live without you

Impossibly Perfect Sphere posted:

Illegal streams
I'm not going to link anyone to a source of illegal NFL streams, because that would bite. I'll just say, that these really are only practical for watching on a PC or Mac. You're not going to find an easy way to get this to play on a streaming media box in any reliable way. Even just watching these on your PC is a pain in the rear end. The quality varies widely depending on the who's doing the streaming, and you're going to have to restart the stream at least three or four times per game. You'll also have to navigate through a shitload of popups and nasty redirects. If you insist on trying this option make sure you have Ad Block or uBlock Origin loaded in your browser of choice.

Streaming to the TV is easy as hell if you have a chromecast or an Android Smart TV. Most people likely have one or the other, but either way it is not that difficult to get on the TV

Impossibly Perfect Sphere
Nov 6, 2002


Nodoze posted:

Streaming to the TV is easy as hell if you have a chromecast or an Android Smart TV. Most people likely have one or the other, but either way it is not that difficult to get on the TV

Most people do not have a Chromecast or Android TV.

Elephanthead
Sep 11, 2008




Toilet Rascal

I just use a cable box and get the games 2 minutes before the rest of the posters.

G-Hawk
Dec 15, 2003



Good OP.

quote:

Streaming Providers
Redzone is available through most of the major streaming providers as an add-on. Examples:
FuboTV ($65/base + $11/add-on) $76/mo
Hulu + Live TV ($65/base + $10/add-on) $75/mo
Sling TV ($35/base + $11/add-on) $46/mo
Youtube TV ($64/base +11/add-on) $75/mo

These will all be behind Cable/Antenna/Satelite, with varying amounts of time - my understanding is Fubo has the least delay and Sling the most of this bunch, that may be outdated though. So if you're online while watching, which you probably often are if you're in this thread, you're gonna have to deal with that problem. This is obviously true of streaming in general, but I think worth highlighting it applies to these full cable replacement type services as well.

Secondly, 4K is starting to become more a thing lately for live sports. Fox* now streams some football games in 4K on their app on Roku. No one else streams 4k as far as i'm aware yet through their network specific app. YouTubeTV has a 4k package that is an extra $20 a month, FuboTV has 4k Fox and NBC (select games) at no extra charge. Its all still mostly limited to a couple games a week - FuboTV lays out here upcoming games that will be in 4K: https://support.fubo.tv/hc/en-us/articles/360011483011-What-events-in-4K-HDR-are-coming-up-on-fuboTV-. ESPN is also showing one college football game a week in 4K, I believe as of now that is available on YoutubeTV but not on FuboTV. It seems likely there will be more expansion by ESPN into 4k soon, the pandemic supposedly delayed it.

*Fox "4K" is actually 1080p HDR upscaled to 4k - it looks better than your typical broadcast but isn't "real" 4k.

Nodoze
Aug 17, 2006

If it's only for a night I can live without you

Impossibly Perfect Sphere posted:

Most people do not have a Chromecast or Android TV.



Interesting. I wonder what "others" is

Magnetic North
Dec 14, 2008

Which way is magnetic north?


Nodoze posted:

Interesting. I wonder what "others" is

The list has no normal old computers, so that's my guess for some large chunk of it.

Ches Neckbeard
Dec 3, 2005

You're all garbage, back up the truck BACK IT UP!

There's a Red Zone weekend in Hulu live this week. NFL may be testing the streaming waters. Dear God anything but a return to Dish.

I would blow Dane Cook
Dec 26, 2008


You can get NFL Sunday ticket without directv via streaming but it's for people who can't get directv for technical reasons.

quote:

NFLSUNDAYTICKET.TV service is only available to non-DIRECTV customers who live in select multi-dwelling unit buildings (apartments, condos, etc.,) nationwide in the U.S. where DIRECTV service is not available, live in select areas within various metropolitan cities, live in a residence that has been verified as unable to receive DIRECTV satellite TV service due to obstructions blocking access to satellite signals, actively or previously enrolled college students.

You can check your eligibility on the website, there is also a cheaper version for college students.

https://nflst.directv.com/

AndrewP
Apr 21, 2010



Well, they added All-22 to Game Pass and the interface is just complete dogshit. They took a buggy website and video player and made it ever buggier and hard to use in the name of "improvement". But it's there I guess.

opposable thumbs.db
Jan 7, 2008
It's hard to say that it's wrong that my life revolves around my dog when she is cuter and more interesting than me

Pillbug

It's a shame that there's really no easy legal option to get access to all games (plus Red Zone) live, reliably in HD quality. Especially if you wanted a service that could be Chromecasted, put on a Roku, or similar with native support (so that it's smooth, not going through your computer).

Ideally, such a service could even give access to multiple sports across their various seasons, including the 4 major sports plus others. If you told me that such a service existed at some URL ending in .com I'd sign up immediately.

nah
Mar 16, 2009



The thought of giving actual money to the nfl to watch the red zone channel is baffling. Get a stream that BITES, then Use that hard earned cash on a 12 pack of your favorite/cheapest IPA and let every Sunday wash away in a thick unmemorable haze

DariusLikewise
Oct 4, 2008

You wore that on Halloween?


If you can use a VPN I'm pretty sure you can get DAZN Canada for $20/month which has Sunday Ticket and Redzone for $20 a month. YMMV though.

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That Which Squeaks
Aug 28, 2006

"Good. Use your aggressive feelings, boy. Let the hate flow through you."
-Bill Belichick


If people are VPNing, I'm actually in Mexico, and ended up paying 125$ (for the season) for the official Gamepass package with everything live, and Redzone (and NFL Network and a bunch of on demand stuff). Definitely cheaper ways to do it but I figure divided over the season it'll be worth it just for stream quality/quality of life.

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