It looks like tech powerhouse Apple is out of talks to land the rights to NFL Sunday Ticket games after the corporate giant decided the NFL content juice was not worth the financial squeeze.
In today’s broadcast environment, the combo of a large quantity of content and brand recognition is king. It is why sports leagues are landing billion-dollar television and streaming deals with regularity over the last decade-plus. Among the various professional sports leagues, the NFL is at the top of the branded content rankings.
NFL games are the most watched events each week in the fall and winter and dominate the TV numbers each year. Due to the fact that their content is so valuable, the NFL has a great deal of leverage in TV contract negotiations. And they often land deals that benefit them more than the broadcasters, as media reporter Dylan Byers explained in a Friday report from Puck.News.
“[Broadcasters] have to spend increasingly astronomical sums to rent content that they almost never recoup. Of course, football has always been a loss leader. Mediacos pay for the rights on Sunday so they can market a week’s worth of programming and pick up the revenue there. But those economics are becoming less favorable for legacy broadcasters as the audience for primetime sitcoms and morning TV shrinks.”– Dylan Byers
Apple drops out of NFL Sunday Ticket negotiations, Google and Amazon still in the hunt
In the same piece from Puck, Byers explained that NFL content consistently costing more than it’s worth has led tech giant Apple to drop out of massive negotiations for the league’s NFL Sunday Ticket package. Leaving just Google and Amazon to battle for the content that will be leaving DirectTV at the end of the regular season.
“With each new round of rights negotiations, we’re going to see Apple, Amazon, and Google take a greater slice of the pie while legacy mediacos get boxed out. The current bidding war for NFL Sunday Ticket is a perfect example of an area where [legacy broadcasters] just can’t compete anymore because they can’t justify the expense. I’m now told that Apple, once seen as a frontrunner for the rights, has also backed out of those negotiations. Nnot because they can’t afford it, but because they don’t see the logic.”– Dylan Byers
Apple dropping out of the negotiations certainly helps Google and Amazon as it takes away some major competition. However, in the end, with ratings for NFL games generating big numbers in 2022, the NFL is sure to land another record-breaking TV deal with one of the tech monsters.