Amazon Pushes Up Exclusive ‘Thursday Night Football’ Package

    • Amazon pushed up the start date of its exclusive 'Thursday Night Football' streaming package by one year to 2022.
    • Live sports is key to the company's pitch to advertisers.

Amazon Prime is getting next-year delivery on its “Thursday Night Football” package.

The tech and retail giant’s deal for the mid-week NFL broadcast was originally announced as starting in 2023 but will instead start in 2022 and run until 2033. 

One preseason game and 15 regular season games will air on Prime Video. Amazon is paying $1 billion a year for the exclusive streaming rights. The company can afford it: first-quarter 2021 revenue alone exploded to $108.5 billion, growing 44% year-over-year and smashing analyst expectations.

Amazon views the streaming rights as reason for people to keep paying for its Prime subscription, which has more than 200 million subscribers. For context, Netflix boasts 207 million global subscribers. 

Last year, Amazon shared “Thursday Night Football” broadcasting rights with Fox and the NFL Network. Fox will no longer air it after this season. 

Sports are a key part of Amazon’s pitch to advertisers

  • The company has sought out the largest global audiences, with broadcasting deals for the New York Yankees, the Premier and Champions Leagues, and rumored negotiations for cricket’s Indian Premier League.
  • The new “Thursday Night Football” announcement came on the same day as Amazon’s first-ever presentation at the NewFronts digital content and advertising marketplace.

Amazon has sought to differentiate its broadcasts through fan-led customizations, like allowing viewers to choose between stats-focused, scouting-based, or local commentators. The company’s “X-Ray” technology also allows fans to see stats and other information on the screen at will.