Yahoo’s First NFL Game Kicks Off to 15.2 Million Unique Viewers

London face-off between Buffalo Bills and Jacksonville Jaguars earns 33.6 million video streams

Jaguars Bills

The NFL is a hit — even when two weak teams play American football online in a foreign country.

The Buffalo Bills versus Jacksonville Jaguars Sunday game in London scored 15.2 million unique viewers on Yahoo. The online network actually expects that number to grow by about one million viewers once all buckets are counted, including local TV markets here, in the U.K., and digital China figures.

The game generated 33.6 million video streams. About one-third of that big audience was international, the digital company touted, with 185 countries having had access. All-told, the U.K. match saw more than 460 million minutes consumed.

Tumblr views are also included in this story’s statistics.

“It’s been a great opportunity to partner with the NFL and deliver a truly exceptional global live streaming experience for our users,” Adam Cahan, Yahoo’s senior vice president of Product and Engineering, said. “We’re seeing a dramatic shift in the industry as audiences’ primary video watching moves away from TV. We were thrilled to join the NFL in setting a new standard for sports programming for our users and advertisers.”

“We’re thrilled with the results of our initial step distributing an NFL game to a worldwide audience and with the work of our partner, Yahoo,” added Hans Schroeder, senior vice president, Media Strategy, Business Development & Sales for the NFL. “We are incredibly excited by the fact that we took a game that would have been viewed by a relatively limited television audience in the United States and by distributing it digitally were able to attract a global audience of over 15 million viewers.”

The Bills/Jaguars game lasted three hours and 15 minutes, kicking off at 1:35 p.m. GMT/9.35 a.m. ET and ending at 4:50 p.m. GMT/ Jacksonville defeated Buffalo 34-31 in a back-and-forth nail-biter, which surely goosed tune-in.