TV Answer Man, I am a bar owner in Kansas City and I see the first Thursday Night Football game this year is the Chargers and Chiefs. I know the game is on Amazon so how am I going to show it in my bar? Do you have to have Amazon to watch it? Streaming doesn’t work well in my bar. It’s constantly buffering and it drives people crazy. You don’t want people drinking going crazy, you know what I mean? — Todd, Kansas City.
Todd, Amazon Prime Video will have the exclusive rights to the NFL’s Thursday Night Football games during the 2022 season, starting with the September 15 clash between the Los Angeles Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs at 8:20 p.m. ET.
That means the games will not be on Fox or the NFL Network. It will be a streaming exclusive, which has some fans a little concerned.
While live streaming has improved over the last few years, the technology is still a work in progress. Fans are sometimes inconvenienced when the picture buffers or disappears entirely. I’ve received e-mails from several readers expressing anger over the possible picture interruptions and the cost of getting an Amazon Prime membership, which is $139 a year or $14.99 a month although you can get Prime Video alone for $8.99 a month. (It should also be noted that Amazon’s technical performances during past Thursday Night Football games has been significantly better than most, which should give fans some hope. Amazon has shared TNF rights with Fox and the NFL Network in past seasons.)
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I’ve also received several e-mails from bar owners who are particularly troubled by Amazon getting the games as an exclusive. They say they will need to spend thousands of dollars for new equipment to simultaneously deliver the stream to multiple TVs in the bar. And if they do that, they are still not confident that the picture will be reliable. As Todd notes, you don’t want to unduly upset a room full of inebriated football fans.
Amazon has not revealed if it will introduce a program designed for bars and restaurants that wish to show the Thursday night games or other Amazon live sporting events such as its New York Yankees games in the New York area.
But there is some good news here. In the markets where the teams are located, one local channel will carry the game. That means you won’t have to stream Amazon in Kansas City and Los Angeles. You will be able to see the game on a local network affiliate via an antenna or pay TV service.
However, outside the teams’ markets, the game will be an Amazon exclusive. So if you’re at home or in a bar, you will need Amazon.
This policy will be for each Thursday night game during the 2022 season. For example, in week two, the Cleveland Browns and Pittsburgh Steelers play on Thursday night. The game will be broadcast locally in Cleveland and Pittsburgh as well as streamed on Amazon., But outside of Cleveland and Pittsburgh, it will be Amazon only.
Here is a schedule of Amazon’s Thursday night contests:
Thursday, Sept. 15: Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs
Thursday, Sept. 22: Pittsburgh Steelers at Cleveland Browns
Thursday, Sept. 29: Miami Dolphins at Cincinnati Bengals
Thursday, Oct. 6: Indianapolis Colts at Denver Broncos
Thursday Oct. 13: Washington Commanders at Chicago Bears
Thursday, Oct. 20: New Orleans Saints at Arizona Cardinals
Thursday, Oct. 27: Baltimore Ravens at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Thursday, Nov. 3: Philadelphia Eagles at Houston Texans
Thursday, Nov. 10: Atlanta Falcons at Carolina Panthers
Thursday, Nov. 17: Tennessee Titans at Green Bay Packers
Thursday, Dec. 1: Buffalo Bills at New England Patriots
Thursday, Dec. 8: Las Vegas Raiders at Los Angeles Rams
Thursday, Dec. 15: San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks
Thursday, Dec. 22: Jacksonville Jaguars at New York Jets
Thursday, Dec. 29: Dallas Cowboys at Tennessee Titans
Todd, hope that helps. Happy viewing and stay safe!
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Viewers with or without prime video should boycott the Thursday night game this year in hopes of forcing the NFL to re-think giving a game to a total streaming company for all of the reasons listed in the article.
If fans would do it, they would probably only miss this season of games and next year perhaps the NFL would put it on the NFL channel or a network that would not stream it.
You don’t honestly think that is going to happen, do you? NFL fans are NFL fans. The whole dynamic has changed. Our sports bar is filled with under 40’s who only care about their Fantasy Football teams and betting on games whether legal or with their friendly bookie.
Amazon Prime Video has over 53 million subscribers in the US and over 200 million worldwide. Only hard core haters would give up all of their Amazon video services. Besides, it comes along with no additional charge with Amazon Prime shopping service.
Nope, sports streaming is here to stay. Senior Citizens like myself better learn to deal with it technology wise and emotionally. Hey, don’t pay for it, just head to your local bar or restaurant and watch all games for the cost of a few beers. Want the comforts of home, pay for it.
Okay, you say “head to your local bar or restaurant”, well, if the Thursday Night game is exclusive to Amazon Prime, you won’t be able to.
up yours clown, we are gonna boycott…sounds like an amazon rep doesn’t it?
i’m with ya brother, lets boycott amazon also
Please do! This is pathetic GREED
We have Prime. But my mom and mother in law don’t. They are both football fans and look forward to football season. They both are seniors and live on a fixed income They live in different states than we do so they won’t be watching Thursday night games. So we have decided we won’t be watching Thursday night football either. And we plan on asking all of our friends to boycott Thursday night football.
We won’t be watching.
I own a sports bar and while I am all to familiar with DirectTV problems and poor service to business accounts, I do understand why they are not investing any more funds or improvements related to Sunday Ticket and the unlikely chance they will be involved once the contract is up after the 2022 NFL season.
That being said I am not sure why business accounts think streaming TNF is going to cost $1,000’s in equipment. Any of the streaming devices, Firestick, Roku, Apple TV work just fine if you don’t have Smart TV which also work fine.
$20 a TV for Firestick does not turn into $1,000s of dollars. We have 40 screens of which 6 have been replaced with smart TVs because they just wore out after a lot of years of on most of the day service. So at worst 36 Firestcks is going to cost a little over $700. If Amazon charges their normal fee, there is no commercial fee at this point, it might even eventually reduce costs.
I will be curious to see how this pans out. Streaming for 1 or 2 TVs in one’s home is fine. However, as 1 of the posters mentioned, their bar has 40 smart TVs. If each TV requires its own data stream, then yes there are likely to be streaming problems (buffering, latency, etc) since the bar likely has a single internet connection whose capacity must be sufficient for all 40 data streams. In addition to the 40 smart TVs that bar likely provides wifi to its patrons which takes additional bandwidth. Also, even if the bandwidth problem is solved, I am guessing that the bar owner may encounter latency variation between TVs. In my house, there can be latency variation between the 2 TVs streaming the same content of more than a second. It is my guess that having 1 TV’s stream be 2 seconds ahead/behind that of another TV’s stream for a live sporting event would be problematic.
It is not right to have NFL football games on any streaming service such as Amazon Prime where the general public would be forced to spend more money than what they presently do for their conventional TV watching. We will not be spending any more money for any additional services to watch Thursday night football games. The NFL is all about money and could care less about their fans. Also, during these trying times that we are going through, many people cannot afford to spend any more money for extra things such as an Amazon Prime Video or whatever. In fact, the way things are going, many people may have to cut services because it is costing them so much more for things that they need to survive on every day. Gas, food, utilities, etc. To sum up… screw the NFL and Amazon.
Screw the greedy NFL communists! They’ve slapped all their fans down. All they want is money and keep their elitist clubs happy. Let the game we all used to love Die.
Nope. I have no plans to purchase amazon prime video to watch crappy quality Thursday Night Football. I pay enough for cable. Sports streaming services is not in my budget. Its either Cable TV or Streaming. Not both.
Is there any word if any of the Amazon Prime NFL games will be in 4k?
There is no way for me to watch Thursday games live, so guess I won’t watch any. Maybe I’ll say the hell with Sunday too….
If I can’t record these Thurs games for later viewing, then screw it.
Has Amazon released any updates on this yet? Specifically for showing in a sports bar?
So is it safe to simply use a personal Amazon account to show the TNF games in a bar?
I will not pay for Amazon. One less viewer of Thursday night football. I’ll go to bar when my team plays on Thursday. Besides that…simply won’t watch.
I wont pay for amazon either, I’ll be boycotting them for life instead…maybe it’s time to replace the commissioner as well.
Me either, costs are to high for everything since the new administration and we cannot afford it any more! No football for us!
I will not be watching. This is the last straw. It is bad enough to listen to all of the insurance commercials that are needed to pay the $500 million dollar contracts. I am also boycotting Amazon for its practices to monopolize and for its tax evasion principles.The NFL is equally to blame. Is it really necessary to disrespect your fans by gouging them of their last dollars while providing an inferior broadcast? I would recommend that we stop watching and maybe they would wake up. For those of us that are sick of the insurance commercials, we should also choose insurance companies that do not overcharge you to pay for these commercials and ridiculeus salesies.