Verizon Inks Mobile Streaming Deal with NFL

Verizon to Stream NFL Games (Including Super Bowl)

Verizon to Stream NFL Games (Including Super Bowl)

The new relationship will include regular National Football League games, playoff games and at least one Super Bowl over the course of several years, but the partners were not specific.

The deal is for in-market games on Thursday, Sunday afternoon, Sunday night, and Monday. Verizon operates Yahoo, as well as AOL, which it purchased in 2015, through its Oath Inc. digital subdivision.

Previously, NFL smartphone streaming was exclusively for Verizon customers.

The distribution of live matches through the Yahoo Sports portal and app means the games will be available to customers of any mobile operator in the U.S., not just Verizon subscribers.

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The partnership kicks off in January 2018 with streaming of the National Football League playoffs on Yahoo and Yahoo Sports, in addition to go90 and the National Football League mobile app.

"Verizon has been a key NFL partner, both in the distribution of games on NFL mobile and as a sponsor, since 2010 and we're thrilled to be both extending and expanding our relationship with them", said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. The partnership starts in January with the postseason, when games, including the Super Bowl, will be expanded to Verizon-owned platforms like Yahoo and Yahoo Sports. Verizon has global distribution rights to the on-demand content, while the live games are US -only. In its previous deal, exclusivity was seen as crucial for Verizon to attract new wireless customers and keeping existing ones.

Verizon formed the Oath digital-media group this summer, combining AOL and Yahoo under one umbrella, after closing the $4.5 billion acquisition of Yahoo in June 2017. The cord cutters and "cord nevers" instead turn to over-the-top streaming services like Sling TV to catch sports on ESPN, for example, or they might hook up a digital antenna for local channels. Next year, national preseason and regular season games will be included.

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