Amazon Prime Video Accelerates NFL Push, Will Debut Thursday Night Exclusive Run In 2022, A Year Ahead Of Plan

Amazon Prime Video is running a hurry-up offense on its NFL push. The streaming giant said it will begin exclusive carriage of Thursday Night Football in 2022, a year ahead of schedule.

The streaming giant paid $1 billion a year to lock up rights in a set of long-term media packages exceeding $100 billion. The league and its partners unveiled the media plans in March. Amazon will have one pre-season game and 15 regular-season games through 2032.

Fox has been leading a three-way simulcast of Thursday night games. Amazon has streamed the games, which have also aired on the NFL Network. The tri-cast will expire after this coming fall season. No details were divulged about how Fox will be compensated under the new agreement.

Amazon said it would soon reveal more details about production, one of the biggest wrinkles as a streaming service breaks ground in handling the daunting task of delivering games.

“We look forward to bringing Thursday Night Football exclusively to Prime members in 2022, a year earlier than previously announced,” said Marie Donoghue, VP of Global Sports Video at Amazon. “This expedited deal is an immediate differentiator for us as a service, as it gives Prime members exclusive access to the most popular sport in the United States.”

Amazon has been making a push into sports globally, in large part because of live games’ ability to drive advertising. The NFL announcement was made on the same day Amazon Prime Video was set to deliver its first presentation to media buyers at the NewFronts.

Under the new arrangement, the NFL will continue to make games available via free local broadcast TV channels in participating teams’ home markets.

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