This week the NFL preseason got started and many of our readers were shocked to see the NFL Network blacking out their local NFL games. With the number of comments and emails, I saw I wanted to take a moment to explain what is happening. (Note this issue happened with Sling TV also but for some reason, only PlayStation Vue subscribers contacted us about the issue.)
The issue seems to be local TV affiliate rights. All NFL preseason games are aired locally for that team’s home market. That means even if the game is also on the NFL Network the local team’s market will get it on a local channel.
The NFL deal with these local channels says that the NFL Network will not air these games inside that market and will only carry it in areas that the station does not cover.
So what is happening here?
In short if you want to watch your local team you need to do on its local affiliate. If you do not know what local your NFL team will be on we suggest that you call them. The NFL feeds are just recasts of your local station’s coverage of the NFL preseason game.
The other issue is that some locals didn’t agree to streaming rights when they signed up for preseason action.
Will this happen during the NFL season?
We do not expect services such as Sling TV, PlayStation Vue, and others to black out NFL games during the NFL regular season. This seems to be an issue with the contracts that the NFL Network and local affiliates have for the preseason.
Also the few locals who didn’t signup for streaming will be there for the regular NFL season as that is a different contract. Hopefully that helps address the concerns we heard from many of our readers.
You can find our full guide to watching the NFL HERE.
Need cord cutting tech support? Join our new Cord Cutting Tech Support Facebook Group for help.