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How To Watch NFL Games Without Cable [2023 Update]

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No sport is more popular than professional football, and most people think that a cable subscription is the only way to watch their favorite team.

Luckily, thanks to streaming services, that is not the case. There are numerous ways to watch NFL games without cable or a satellite TV provider.

We’ve tested the top video streaming services to find the best ways to catch all the action this season.

What Channels Are NFL Games On?​


It is essential to know what networks you need in order to stream NFL games before choosing a service. Not all platforms will have everything you want, so doing your due diligence is key.

Here are the channels you must have to get live football:

  • CBS – Shows Sunday games (AFC games)
  • ESPN – Shows Monday Night Football
  • FOX – Shows Sunday games (NFC games)
  • NBC – Shows Sunday Night Football
  • Amazon Prime Video – Thursday Night Football

As you can see, games are spread across several platforms and networks. Keep this in mind as you look for platforms that offer primetime NFL games, out-of-market games, or other matchups you want to watch.

What Are the Best Streaming Services to Watch NFL Games Online?​


A cable alternative is the best choice to watch live NFL games.

Some platforms are live services that carry dozens of TV channels. Others are on-demand platforms that also stream live sports.

As a preview, here are the top streaming services to watch football this fall.

ServiceCostLocals (Y/N)StreamsDVRTry
fuboTV$74.99+Y101,000 hrs. Try
Sling O+B$55+Varies450 hrs. Try
Vidgo$69.99+ABC/FOX3N/A Try
DIRECTV STREAM$79.99+Y20Unlimited Try
Hulu Live$76.99+Y2Unlimited Try
YouTube TV$72.99+Y3Unlimited Try
Peacock$5.99+N/A3N/A Try
Paramount+$5.99+N/A3N/A Try
Amazon Prime$8.99N/A3N/A Try

You only need an internet connection to use each option, and they all work with a wide array of supported devices.

Some services offer free trials, so take advantage of those before making a final decision.

Fubo​


FuboTV is our top choice to watch live NFL games. This service carries the entire ESPN family of channels, the NFL Network, and all of your local networks.

The base package, Pro, costs $74.99 monthly, plus RSN fees, and includes roughly 150 channels. This makes the streaming service a terrific choice to watch all nationally televised and local games.

Other sports channels you can expect to get with the base package include:

  • FS1
  • FS2
  • BTN
  • Golf Channel
  • Bally Sports regional sports networks

If you enjoy niche sports, fuboTV offers various add-on packages to get access to sports like biking and tennis. You can even get NFL RedZone with its Sports Plus add-on for an additional $10.99 per month.

FuboTV has a cloud-based DVR that allows you to record 1,000 hours of content.

Read our review of the fuboTV packages to learn more.

Sports channels included: ESPN family of channels, NFL Network, FS1, FS2, BTN, Golf Channel, Olympics Channel, TVG, beIN Sports, CBS Sports Network, and all local networks.

Best for: Top choice for NFL fans

InfoData
Pricing & PackagesPro - $74.99+ / Elite - $84.99+
Simultaneous Streams10 at home + 2 on the go / 10 at home + 2 on the go
DVRPro - 1,000 hours / Elite - 1,000 hours
Channels140+ - 210+
Supported DevicesiOS, Android, Roku, Amazon Fire TV + more
On-demand libraryYes

Sling TV​


Sling TV is the cheapest option to watch the NFL. The platform has two base packages – Orange and Blue. Each plan costs $40 per month.

However, with the affordability comes variations in each package’s offerings. Orange includes ESPN and ESPN2, and Blue offers the NFL Network.

You must combine the two, known as Sling Orange + Blue, to get both ESPN and NFL Network. The combined package costs $55 per month and offers roughly 50 channels.

*For a limited time, save over $100 when you select Sling’s Season Pass offer, when you prepay for five months. This gives you Sling Orange + Blue plus their Sports Extra Add-on, which includes SEC, ACC, and PAC-12 Networks, ESPNU, NFL RedZone, and more*

One other challenge is that local broadcast affiliates are only available in the Blue package, albeit on a limited basis. In addition, it only includes ABC, FOX, and NBC in select markets.

Here is where you can watch ABC on Sling TV.

CityStation
ChicagoWLS
FresnoKSFN
HoustonKTRK
Los AngelesKABC
New YorkWABC
PhiladelphiaWPVI
Raleigh-DurhamWTVD
San Francisco/Oakland/San JoseKGO

This is where you can watch FOX on Sling TV.

CityStation
New YorkWNYW
PhiladelphiaWTXF
ChicagoWFLD
DetroitWJBK
AtlantaWAGA
Washington, DCWTTG
HoustonKRIV
Orlando/Daytona/MelbourneWOFL
Tampa/St. PetersburgWTVT
GainesvilleWOGX
MilwaukeeWITI
Minneapolis/St. PaulKMSP
Dallas/Ft. WorthKDFW
AustinKTBC
PhoenixKSAZ
SeattleKCPQ
Los AngelesKTTV
San Francisco/Oakland/San JoseKTVU

Here is where you can watch NBC on Sling TV.

CityStation
New YorkWNBC
PhiladelphiaWCAU
ChicagoWMAQ
BostonWBTS
Washington, DCWRC-TV
Miami/Ft. LauderdaleWTVJ
Hartford/New HavenWVIT
Dallas/Ft. WorthKXAS
Los AngelesKNBC
San Francisco/Oakland/San JoseKNTV
San DiegoKNSD

If you don’t mind pairing Sling with an over-the-antenna, you can save at least $15 per month compared to other live TV streaming services.

*Missing out on your local channels? Read our guide on how to watch FOX without cable to learn how to get your local affiliate.*

If you get Orange + Blue, you’ll also receive:

  • FS1
  • FS2
  • Stadium

You can purchase the Sports Add-on for an extra $11 per month to get NFL RedZone and ten other sports channels.

Sling has a cloud DVR setup with 50 included hours. You can upgrade to 200 hours for $5 per month.

Read our review of the Sling TV plans to learn more.

Sports channels included: ESPN, ESPN2, FS1, NFL Network, Stadium, ABC, FOX, and NBC in some locations.

Best for: Fans who want flexibility

InfoData
Pricing & PackagesOrange - $40 / Blue - $40 / Orange + Blue - $55
ChannelsOrange - 30 (ESPN) / Blue - 42 / Orange + Blue - 50+
Supported DevicesiOS, Android, Roku, Amazon Fire TV + more
Simultaneous StreamsOrange - 1 / Blue - 3 / Orange + Blue - 3
DVR50 hrs. - Free / 200 hrs. - $5/mo.
On-demand libraryYes

Vidgo​


Vidgo is a newer player in the cable replacement space and is a good option to watch the NFL online. The service is cheaper than fuboTV or Hulu Live, and the base plan costs $69.99 monthly.

Vidgo carries the entire ESPN family of channels and the NFL Network. Unfortunately, it only offers ABC and FOX for local channels, so you will need an antenna to get CBS.

Other sports channels Vidgo carries include:

  • BTN
  • The Longhorn Network
  • Pac-12 Network

You can get the NFL RedZone, but you must upgrade to their more expensive tier to receive it.

It’s important to note that there is currently no DVR with Vidgo. This might be a deal-breaker for fans who want to record games.

The platform doesn’t always offer a free trial, but it’s not uncommon for it to provide some type of new customer promotion.

Read our Vidgo TV review to learn more.

Sports channels included: ESPN family of networks, FS1, FS2, NFL Network, NFL RedZone, ACCN, BTN, The Longhorn Network, Pac-12 Network, SEC Network, ABC, and FOX.

Best for: Fans who want a slightly more affordable premium option

*Feeling overwhelmed about which streaming service is best for you? Take our free quiz and find out in 30 seconds!

InfoData
Pricing & PackagesEnglish & Spanish - $69.99+
Channels110+
Supported DevicesiOS, Android, Roku, Amazon Fire TV + more
Simultaneous Streams3
DVRNot yet
On-demand libraryNot yet

DIRECTV STREAM​


DIRECTV STREAM is the no-contract arm of the similarly named satellite TV provider. Most people think you can get NFL Sunday Ticket with the streaming service.

Unfortunately, that is not the case. This platform is like the previously mentioned services. It offers dozens of live channels and is suitable for NFL fans.

DIRECTV STREAM has four channel packages, with costs ranging from $79.99 to $164.99 a month. In this post, we’ll only cover the Entertainment plan, which is the cheapest option.

The Entertainment plan includes roughly 75 networks, including all your local channels. The lower-priced package includes ESPN and ESPN 2.

Other sports networks included are:

  • FS1
  • MOTOR TREND

Additionally, DIRECTV STREAM is the top choice for regional sports networks (RSNs). However, you must subscribe to the Choice tier, which costs $108.99 per month.

Furthermore, if you want the NFL Network, you must subscribe to the Choice plan to get it.

If you don’t want the Choice plan, you can opt for Entertainment and purchase the Sports Pack add-on for $14.99 monthly. It includes roughly 40 sports-centric channels including NFL RedZone.

YouTube TV might be a better choice if you want a slightly lower-priced service without RSNs. Read our Youtube TV vs. DIRECTV STREAM guide to learn how the two compare.

Don’t miss our DIRECTV STREAM review to learn more.

Sports channels included: ESPN, ESPN 2, FS1, and MOTOR TREND

Best for: Fans in large families since you get 20 simultaneous streams

Hulu with Live TV​


If you want to watch the NFL online, Hulu with Live TV is an excellent choice. The service offers one base package, which costs $76.99 per month for roughly 90 channels.

Hulu Live carries each of the ESPN channels, the NFL Network, and your local channels. This makes it a good option to access your local TV market and other live sports.

Other sports channels Hulu Live offers include:

  • ACCN
  • BTN
  • FS1
  • FS2
  • Golf Channel

You can add NFL RedZone by purchasing its Sports Add-on for $9.99, which includes five other channels.

Furthermore, Hulu Live upgraded its DVR to allow for unlimited recording capacity. You can even skip commercials on recordings.

The service offers two simultaneous streams. If you need more, you can upgrade to unlimited streams for $10 per month.

One additional perk of Hulu Live is the inclusion of the Disney bundle on all plans. This gives you both Disney+ and ESPN+.

The latter has exclusive NFL content, including airing one game that is being played in Europe during the 2023 season. The inclusion of ESPN+ also makes it a good choice for fans who want to watch college football online.

Read our Hulu Live channels list to learn more.

Sports channels included: ESPN family of channels, NFL Network, FS1, FS2, ACCN, BTN, CBS Sports Network, Golf Channel, Olympic Channel, SECN, and all local networks.

Best for: College football fans

InfoData
DVRNo limit
Pricing & Packages$76.99 - $89.99 (no ads)
Channels80 + locals
Supported DevicesiOS, Android, Roku, Amazon Fire TV + more
Simultaneous Streams2 - Free / unlimited - $9.99
On-demand libraryYes

YouTube TV​


YouTube TV is a close second to fuboTV to watch NFL games without cable. The streaming platform offers over 100 channels for $72.99 per month.

This gets you the full family of ESPN channels, the NFL Network, and all local networks.

Additional sports channels include:

  • ACCN
  • BTN
  • FS1
  • FS2

You can add NFL RedZone as part of its Sports Plus add-on for $10.99 per month. This includes twelve other channels.

If you’re an NBA or MLB fan, the service also carries those respective networks. This makes it one of the best sports streaming services.

*Related: Are you a basketball fan but want to ditch your expensive contract? Read our guide on the best ways to stream NBA games and save big bucks.*

Another awesome feature YouTube TV offers is an unlimited DVR. However, all recordings are only housed for nine months. This could be a deterrent for some fans.

Read our YouTube TV review to learn more about this streaming service.

Sports channels included: Entire ESPN family of channels, NFL Network, FS1, FS2, ACCN, BTN, CBS Sports Network, Golf Channel, MLB Network, NBA TV, Olympics Channel, SECN, and all local channels.

Best for: NBA and MLB fans

InfoData
Pricing & Packages$72.99
Channels100+
Supported DevicesiOS, Android, Roku, Amazon Fire TV + more
Simultaneous Streams3
DVRNo limit
On-demand libraryYes

Peacock​


Peacock TV is an excellent choice for people who want to watch NFL games without a TV provider. The service only airs games that are broadcast on NBC.

This includes Sunday Night Football and any playoff games aired on the network. It also includes an exclusive game for the 2023 season as the Buffalo Bills face the Los Angeles Chargers on December 23.

It will even have one exclusive Wild Card game for the 2023 season.

Peacock is an on-demand service that exclusively carries NBCUniversal content. Better yet, it allows you to stream Yellowstone without cable and is the home of premium WWE content.

As you can see, the service is relatively low cost.

FeaturePeacock PremiumPeacock Premium Plus
Price/Mo.$5.99$11.99
Price/Yr.$59.99$119.99
AdsYesNo
Mobile DownloadsNoYes
Original ContentYesYes
Live SportsYesYes
Free TrialNoNo

You must sign up for Peacock Premium, at a minimum, to watch NFL games. Read our Peacock TV review to learn more.

Best for: People who want a cheap way to watch nationally televised games

Paramount+​


Paramount+ (formerly known as CBS All-Access) is a fantastic option for AFC fans.

The on-demand streaming service provides access to your local CBS affiliate if you upgrade to their premium ad-free package.

As you can see below, the price is pretty affordable.

Subscription TypeMonthly CostAnnual Cost
Limited Ads (Essential Plan)$5.99$59.99
Ad-Free (Premium Plan)$11.99$119.99

**Now through September 20, 2023, get the Paramount+ Essential plan for $2.50 a month when you sign up for an annual plan. Use the code SPORTS to get the offer. That’s a savings of nearly 60 percent!**

The app provides access to over 30,000 TV shows and 2,500 movies. When you upgrade to the ad-free option, you can watch anything on your local CBS channel, including football games and Showtime content.

If your favorite NFL team is in the AFC, this service might be the ideal choice for you.

However, you won’t get other games with this platform. You can pair it with an antenna or a service like Sling to catch more action.

Paramount+ could be a good pairing with Peacock if you don’t need every game. Read our Peacock TV vs. Paramount+ analysis to see how they compare.

Don’t miss our Paramount+ review to learn more.

Best for: AFC fans

Amazon Prime Video


Amazon Prime Video is the exclusive home of Thursday Night Football for the 2023 season. If you’re a Prime member, getting the ability to stream regular season games is a nice perk.

Amazon Prime costs $139 per year. Alternately, you can sign up for the standalone video service for $8.99 a month.

You won’t get other games, but it is a good choice if you want to keep your costs somewhat low.

Best for: Amazon Prime members

How Much is NFL Sunday Ticket on YouTube TV?​


New for the 2023 season is the availability of NFL Sunday Ticket on YouTube TV. The standard price is $349 annually, or you can spend $389 annually to also receive NFL RedZone.

However, that pricing assumes you’re a YouTube TV subscriber. A subscription isn’t required to get Sunday Ticket.

You can purchase a standalone NFL Sunday Ticket subscription via YouTube Primetime channels to save money. Those are priced at $449 and $489, respectively.

Keep in mind these options don’t include the 100+ networks you receive with YouTube TV.

The service often runs promotions to get any of the plans at a reduced price.

Regardless of which one you choose, you can watch all out-of-market Sunday games. You also get unlimited simultaneous streams and can stream four games on the same screen with YouTube TV’s multiview feature.

However, it doesn’t carry prime time NFL games, so you will need another option for those. NFL+ could be a suitable alternative.

Read our NFL+ vs. Sunday Ticket analysis to learn more.

How Can I Watch NFL Games for Free Without Cable?​


An over-the-air antenna is the best way to watch NFL games live. Outside of an affordable one-time cost, you can watch games on all your local networks for free.

You can catch the following with an antenna:

  • In-market Sunday afternoon games
  • Sunday Night Football

Mohu Leaf is our favorite over-the-air antenna. We have used it for years, and it provides quality service.

Use the code FRUGALRULES10 to receive ten percent off your antenna.

An antenna is the cheapest way to watch anything aired in your local TV market, from pre-season games to regular season games and the playoffs. It also gets you free over-the-air TV if you don’t need cable networks.

Can You Watch NFL Games on Amazon Prime?​


Yes, it is possible to view NFL action on Amazon Prime Video. However, you can only stream Thursday Night Football on the service.

It is not possible to watch any other games during the 2023 season on Amazon.

Can You Live Stream NFL for Free?​


No, you can’t access the NFL live stream for free. Websites that promote the ability to do so are often filled with spam or are not trustworthy.

Some apps will promote the ability to stream live games for free, but it’s only highlights and not full games.

What Package Allows You to Watch All NFL Games?​


There is no service that allows you to watch every game. NFL Sunday Ticket is the only resource to watch every out-of-market game airing on Sunday afternoons.

Regardless of where you live, you can watch any game with Sunday Ticket. That plan is only through YouTube TV.

Is the NFL Channel Free With Amazon Prime?​


Amazon does not currently offer any live TV channels, so it’s not possible to get the NFL Channel on the platform.

Read our guide on the best choices to watch NFL Network without cable to learn how to get the channel.

Additionally, Amazon doesn’t currently air much for live sports. As a result, you will need to look elsewhere to get what you want.

How To Watch the NFL Playoffs Without Cable​


Having access to the playoffs is essential for any NFL fan. Thankfully, you don’t need cable to watch the NFL playoffs or the Super Bowl.

The playoffs start on January 13, 2024, for the 2023 NFL season, with the Super Bowl taking place on February 11, 2024.

While ESPN and Nickelodeon will simulcast several games, most of the games will air on local stations. Peacock will have one exclusive Wild Card game.

An over-the-air antenna will be sufficient to watch every playoff game besides the one airing on Peacock.

If you don’t have an antenna or cable TV, you will need a live TV streaming service that carries all of the local networks.

This makes fuboTV, YouTube TV, Hulu Live, and DIRECTV STREAM the best choices to get all playoff games.

If you don’t need access to all of the action, Peacock Premium and the ad-free version of Paramount+ will let you watch games.

FOX aired the Super Bowl for the 2022 season, with some of it being simulcast on its free service, Tubi.

Read our review of Tubi to learn more.

What is NFL+?​


The NFL launched its own streaming service, NFL+, in July of 2022. The service has two packages, one that costs $6.99 a month and a premium tier for $14.99 a month.

This platform’s cheaper plan airs live local regular season and playoff games plus game audio. It also offers access to all live out-of-market pre-season action. If you want local NFL games, it might be enough for you.

The premium tier includes all of that plus full game, ad-free, next-day replays, and Coaches Film. NFL+ will only allow subscribers to watch live games on a device or tablet.

However, you can stream the NFL Network on your TV on both tiers. If you sign up for the premium tier you also can stream NFL RedZone on a TV.

Aside from the pre-season action and ad-free replay of games, NFL+ offers minimal value. But, if you like watching your favorite team play pre-season games or often miss local games, it might be for you. It’s also a good choice for avid fans.

You can test out the service with a seven-day free trial.

Read our NFL+ review to learn more.

Bottom Line​


You used to need a cable contract to watch football. Now, you can cut the cord on cable TV and stream ESPN and the NFL Network with most providers. You can even watch out-of-market NFL games without a contract.

While not all providers offer local networks, you can get those with an antenna for a one-time cost. The best part is that no sports streaming services require a contract, so you can cancel anytime.

If you want to watch live NFL games without paying $200+ per month, you can do it and pocket the savings for other needs.

What other channels do you feel like you can’t live without?

The post How To Watch NFL Games Without Cable [2023 Update] appeared first on Frugal Rules.
 
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