The National Cable Television Cooperative and the NFL Network have agreed on terms that are expected to make NFL games and associated programming available to NCTC member MVPDs, including the network’s exclusive Thursday night offerings. NCTC represents close to 1K companies, including 17 of the top 20 MSOs.
NFL Network operates 24/7 year round, and has rights to broadcast prime Thursday night NFL contests eight times per season. Included in the package is NFL RedZone, which takes fans from one Sunday hotspot to another, keeping instantaneous track of scoring and other key plays.
Jeff Abbas, NCTC President/CEO said, “There is no shortage of sports networks seeking distribution, but NFL Network has proven to be both the premiere sports television franchise and one often requested by cable subscribers. NCTC is happy to help members kick-off the football season with a new master agreement for NFL Network and NFL RedZone. NCTC appreciates NFL Network’s recognition and accommodation of the unique needs of our diverse membership.”
“The NFL season is here and we are pleased that NFL Network and NFL RedZone will now be available to NCTC members,” added NFL Network VP affiliate relations John Malkin. “More fans can now enjoy the only network dedicated entirely to football featuring every preseason NFL game and Thursday Night Football regular season games, as well as the exciting NFL RedZone that highlights every touchdown from every game on Sunday afternoons.”
Among the executives listed as members of the NCTC board, we found references to MVPDs such as Cablevision Systems, Charter Communications, Cox Communications, Suddenlink, Armstrong Communications, Cable One and many more. NCTC includes organizations serving some 26.7M subscribers.
RBR-TVBR observation: Sports programming is one of the biggest bones of contention when it comes to which distribution platforms get to show what to whom and for how much, and NFL Network carriage has often been in the thick of the debate. The more consumers who get reasonable access to its programming, the happier NFL Net, and many politicians, will be.