By Jonathan Easton
Sky Sports has signed a five year renewal to its broadcast deal with the NFL and will launch a channel dedicated to the US sport.
Launching on September 3, Sky Sports NFL marks the first time that the American football league will partner with an international broadcaster to launch a channel dedicated to the sport. At the end of the deal, Sky will have held the rights to the NFL for a consecutive 30 years.
It becomes the latest sport-specific channel on Sky, joining channels dedicated to the English Premier League, Football, Cricket, F1 and Golf.
The channel will provide a minimum of five live games each week, along with a first-pick exclusive game in the 6pm and 9pm slot every Sunday, every Thursday Night, Sunday Night and Monday Night Football and every playoff game, Pro Bowl and Super Bowl live. In addition, Sky Sports NFL will broadcast magazine content from the NFL Network along with documentaries and other content from NFL Films and NBC Sports.
Sky will also produce original NFL programming and has pledged to increase its coverage of the league across Sky Sports News, and its digital and social platforms.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, said: “Sky Sports has been a fantastic broadcast partner for a quarter of a century. This new five-year agreement and the launch of a dedicated Sky Sports NFL channel will undoubtedly continue our rapid growth in the UK and Ireland. We are excited that our expanded partnership with Sky will provide even more NFL content to our millions of UK and Irish fans.”
CEO of Sky UK and Europe Stephen van Rooyen said: “We are proud of our quarter-century partnership with the NFL and are hugely excited about launching a dedicated channel which will be a first for the NFL with an international broadcaster. Sky Sports NFL will allow us to take our customers even closer to the sport.
“Sky Sports has shown live NFL since 1995 and played a big role in growing the sport in the UK & Ireland over the last 25 years. Now, as part of Comcast, we are excited about taking our partnership to a whole new level. Our viewers are passionate sports fans and we look forward to capturing the drama of the NFL for another five years.”