Netflix seeks production partner for Christmas NFL games

Netflix is making a move into live sports with plans to air NFL games on Christmas Day this year and in the following years, as announced last month. The streaming giant is seeking a partner to help produce these games, reaching out to broadcasters such as ESPN, NBCUniversal, and CBS Sports. This marks Netflix's first venture into traditional live sports, driven by its desire to expand its advertising tier.

There is some reluctance among current NFL partners to assist Netflix, as the streaming service could potentially become a long-term media rights partner in the future. However, pressure from the league and a substantial payment from Netflix may sway broadcasters to strike a deal. Netflix aims to mirror the successful partnership that Amazon Prime Video established with NBC Sports for "Thursday Night Football" games.

The NFL is looking to broaden its media partners and offer more streaming options to increase its audience. Amazon was the first streamer to secure exclusive rights to NFL games, with a deal for "Thursday Night Football" in 2021. Other streaming services like Comcast, ESPN, and Paramount have also started streaming games simultaneously and exclusively. YouTube TV is now the home of the "Sunday Ticket" package of games.

The NFL's push to add more streaming partners is evident in the deal with Netflix to stream Christmas Day games. This move aligns with the league's goal to make games more accessible to a wider audience. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has expressed the importance of moving towards streaming to benefit consumers.

Overall, Netflix's entry into live sports with NFL games marks a significant shift in the industry. As discussions continue with potential partners, the landscape of sports broadcasting is evolving to include more streaming options and cater to changing consumer preferences.


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