Saturday December 9, 2023

NFL Prime Time

Arizona Cardinals
Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports
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Amazon Prime and Amazon-owned live streaming platform Twitch will be the exclusive homes of the Week 15 San Francisco 49ers-Arizona Cardinals game on Saturday, Dec. 26. 

Amazon’s NFL Slate:

  • Eleven “Thursday Night Football” matchups, shared with Fox and NFL Network. 
  • One exclusive, late regular-season game.
  • One of the new wild-card round playoff games, shared with ViacomCBS. 

The e-commerce giant is paying more than $70 million annually for its NFL regular season game package after renewing the deal in April, extending it through 2022. The cost of the wild-card matchup is said to have a significantly higher per-game price tag.

Amazon’s streams offer alternate commentary teams as well as “A-Ray” technology that offers on-demand replays and stats specific to any given play, including time to throw, running speeds and trivia.

Added intrigue: The Niners-Cardinals matchup could end up being a home game of sorts for both sides, as San Francisco is playing its Week 13 and 14 home games at Arizona’s facilities after Santa Clara County banned professional sports for at least three weeks.  

Twitch’s sports appeal: Amazon is trying to shake the platform’s video games-only reputation to appeal to a wider audience, while the NFL is trying to reach younger audiences. 

  • The NFL’s average audience on Twitch rose 45% year-over-year in 2019, but was still significantly below what broadcast TV typically draws. 
  • Twitch has more than 17.5 million average daily visitors — 67% of them are under 35.
  • The NFL and Twitch are bringing back the Fortnite NFLPA Open on Dec. 2. It will see NFL players compete for a spot in the Twitch Rivals “Streamer Bowl” in 2021.
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