Amazon renewed its deal to stream 11 Thursday night NFL games on its Prime Video service worldwide for the 2018 and 2019 seasons. It’s not an exclusive deal, as those same games will air in the U.S. on the Fox broadcast network as well as the NFL Network and Spanish-language Fox Deportes cable channels. And the price won’t compare to the billion-dollar deals the league has with its exclusive TV broadcast partners. The price was not disclosed, but Amazon reportedly paid $50 million for a nearly identical rights package last season.
Still, having a one-stop shop for Thursday night games for Prime Video’s 100 million subscribers around the world is a big deal. It’s pure incremental profit for the NFL, which also would presumably get a look at viewership patterns around the world, valuable information for a league trying to grow internationally as it faces challenges at home. As Amazon positions Prime Video as a full-service pay-TV replacement around the world, it could do a lot worse than showing live pro football.