Comcast and the National Football League announced Tuesday that they have reached a new agreement to carry the NFL Network.
Deal ends the years-old squabbling between the the cable company and the NFL. Both sides had been at odds over carriage placement as the NFL sought about 70 cents per subscriber, which Comcast was unwilling to pay. As part of the agreement, the NFL and Comcast will discontinue pending legal actions before the FCC and a New York state court.
Comcast will start repositioning NFL Network from the Sports Entertainment Package to its Digital Classic level of service by August 1 in an effort to reach more of the company’s customer base — nearly two-thirds.
Included in the deal is NFL Network, video on demand for Comcast’s Digital Classic cable customers and an offer for NFL’s RedZone Channel after its created.
Under the deal, Comcast will pay a monthly fee of about 50 cents for each of its 17.3 million subscribers who get the expanded digital basic menu of channels, the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday. Previously, the NFL didn’t have as far reach because it was offered as part of a premium package that costs subscribers an extra $8 per month, the paper said.
"We are delighted to have come to an agreement with the NFL," Brian L. Roberts, Chairman and CEO of the Comcast Corporation said in a statement. "Our goal has always been to provide our digital customers with access to the NFL’s unique content and, working together, we have struck the right balance between value and distribution on a variety of viewing platforms."
"We are very pleased that NFL Network and other NFL content will be widely distributed in millions of more homes on Comcast’s service," said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.