It used to be a real pain to stream NFL football games. Now, it’s easier than ever, but there are still some problems to avoid to make sure you’ll get to enjoy your game instead of wanting to throw your TV on the street.
Also: Best live TV and video streaming services for cord-cutters
These days most of the services will work with any streaming device. Many, however, isn’t all. Before putting your money down for any streaming service, make sure it will work with your device of choice.
The prices of streaming services can vary depending on how you subscribe to them. Be sure to shop around. You can find some real deals out there.
- Watch Thursday night games on Prime Video
- Amazon Prime membership costs $119 per year
I sure don’t think about Amazon Prime when I think football, but you can watch Thursday night games on Amazon Prime Video. Amazon Prime is available on essentially all streaming devices and PCs.
AT&T NOW (Formerly DirecTV Now)
- No longer offers NFL Sunday Ticket, RedZone, or NFL Network
- $40 for a minimum package, which includes ESPN and local network stations.
AT&T Now comes with four different service levels. The entry-level package is $40 a month. It includes ESPN and some local network channels. But the service may not support the networks you need. For example, from my home in Asheville, N.C., I can watch Sunday Night Football on NBC, but I can’t get CBS or Fox, so I can’t watch the games on those networks.
You can find your local stations from this web page.
CBS ALL ACCESS
- Starts at $5.99 a month; carries local affiliates’ games
- NFL games come with advertisements
CBS All Access, a ZDNet-related service, is available in many, but not all, markets. It carries CBS’s Sunday afternoon games, a traditional Thanksgiving Day game, a game played in London, the AFC Playoffs, and the AFC Championship Game. This streaming service costs $5.99 a month. There’s also a version without ads for $9.99. NFL games, however, come with ads on both streams.
FOX SPORTS GO
- Watch Fox live games — if you pay for Fox
If you already have a pay-TV subscription, cable, satellite, or some of the streaming services mentioned here, you can watch the game with the Fox Sports Go app or from your web browser. This is ideal when you want to catch a game away from your home.
- Base price: $54.99
- NFL Redzone and other sports networks: An additional $8.99.
FuboTV, as the name hints, carries a lot of sports, but it doesn’t offer ESPN. On the other hand, it does come with the NFL Network, and, as always, depending on where you live, your local affiliates. Fubo’s the only streaming service that offered all three of the national networks showing NFL games: CBS, Fox, and NBC.
HULU WITH LIVE TV
- $44.99 a month
- Games on local network affiliates may be available,
Hulu with Live TV’s plan is $44.99 a month. It comes with 50+ live channels. Depending on your market, your local NBC, ABC, Fox, and CBS live channels may be available to you. You must check your live channels to make sure. For example, unlike AT&T Now, I can watch the locally broadcast Fox games, but I can’t watch the NBC and CBS games. It also doesn’t offer the NFL Network.
NFL APP and YAHOO SPORTS
- Requires Android or iPhone device and Yahoo account.
The NFL app or Yahoo Sports app for Android or iOS gives you a free way to watch your local team’s games. Besides live regular-season games, you can also watch the playoffs and the Super Bowl with it. However, you can only view the games on your phone or tablet. You can’t screencast from your device to your television. Darn it!
NFL NETWORK APP
- Requires Android, iPhone, or Windows Phone
The NFL Network app, like the name says, enables you to watch NFL Network programming and NFL RedZone on your tablet and mobile device. The big win here is it covers the Thursday night NFL Network games. But access to NFL Redzone requires you already have a subscription to a programming package that includes NFL RedZone
- $99.99 a season
- Watch all NFL games the day after they air
NFL GamePass is an all-football, all-the-time option. For $99.99 a season, you can watch all NFL games… the day after they’re played. You also can’t watch local games on it. So, for instance, where I live, I can’t see the Carolina Panthers.
To sweeten the deal, GamePass includes live NFL game radio broadcasts and access to NFL Originals, with football shows such as previous seasons of Hard Knocks, A Football Life, and Mic’d Up.
NFL SUNDAY TICKET
- $73.49 a month
- Available only if you can’t get DirecTV satellite service
The most comprehensive package for Sunday NFL games is DirecTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket. It doesn’t show every Sunday afternoon game, but it comes close. You can’t watch your local team games, or some games played out of the US. And, there’s a catch: NFL Sunday Ticket is only available for cord-cutters if they can’t get DirecTV satellite service.
Sunday Ticket comes in two forms: NFLST.TV To Go and NFLST.TV Max.
The To Go package shows live games. It costs $73.49 per month for the four months of the regular season, or single payment of $293.96. With Max, you also get NFL RedZone and DirectTV Fantasy Zone. Red Zone lets you watch every Sunday afternoon touchdown. Fantasy Zone, like the name suggests provides fantasy football stats and analysis.
Max will cost $395.99 for the season or $99 per month. For an additional $50, you can get NFL Game Pass. This service streams live pre-season games and reruns of regular-season games. If you’re a college student, you can get a great deal with the NFLST.TV U package. For $24.99 per month for four months or $99.96 for the season, you get the full Max package.
Maybe it’s time to go back to school?
- Starts at $49.99 a month for local channels.
- Core, $54.99, includes some local channels and the NFL Network.
With PlayStation Vue, you don’t need a PlayStation. You can watch it on pretty much any device. Like the other internet-streaming TV packages, its live channels depend on where you live. In my case, I can get Fox and NBC, but not CBS.
- Requires two Sling TV packages for $40 a month
- GameFinder feature lets you search for specific games
With Sling TV, things get a little complicated. NFL fans need at least two packages. These are Sling TV Orange for $25 and Sling TV Blue for $25. The better deal is to get both for $40 a month. The Orange package includes ESPN 1 and 2, while FOX, FS1, FS2, NBC, NBCSN, and NFL Network live on the Blue package.
NFL Redzone is available on Sports Extra Pack Blue, which costs $10. CBS games are not available. To see what channels are available on which of Sling TV’s many packages use Sling TV’s Explore Channel page.
Sling TV also boasts a unique feature: Game Finder. This allows you to search for broadcasts featuring specific teams, locations, and games near your home. If you can’t see the game on their services, it’ll tell you that, too.
- Costs $49.99 a month.
- It carries CBS, NBC, ESPN, and Fox games.
Google’s YouTube TV now runs $49.99 a month. It comes with over 70 channels. For NFL fans, the good news is it includes CBS, ESPN, NBC, and Fox. The bad news is that it doesn’t cover the NFL Network or RedZone.
THE BOTTOM LINE
It’s not as easy to watch the NFL over the internet as it is with a top cable or satellite package, but we’re getting there, and cord-cutting is cheaper than its competition. That said, the streaming services prices keep going up and up. In the past year, most services cost $5 more a month. Still, I’ll be rooting my Steelers on to victory by streaming the games this fall.
Disclosure: ZDNet may earn a commission from some of the products featured on this page.
2021 Kia Niro Hybrid and Niro PHEV gets new tech and safety updates
The 2021 Kia Niro Hybrid and Niro PHEV are soldiering on with a couple of new safety and technology features. Kia updated the Niro’s styling last year, and the changes carry over to the 2021 model. The Niro may not be the roomiest or best-handling crossover on the road, but it easily achieves 43 to 50 mpg in combined city/highway driving.
New for the 2021 Kia Niro and Kiro PHEV is a rear occupant alert system, a new 8-inch touchscreen infotainment display, and wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto connectivity. Vehicles equipped with Kia’s Smart Key now have a remote engine start feature. Meanwhile, Niro models with navigation get ten years of complimentary MapCare updates.
Moreover, both the Niro Hybrid and Niro plug-in-hybrid also get navigation-based smart cruise control with a ‘curve’ function. The latter automatically applies the brakes to reduce vehicle speed upon entering a corner. The Niro is comprehensively equipped with top-notch safety and driver assistive features like forward collision avoidance, blindspot detection, lane keeping assist, smart cruise control, and a rearview camera, to name just a few.
The 2021 Kia Niro Hybrid remains motivated by a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine and an electric motor pumping out a combined 139 horsepower, all of which are sent to the front wheels via a six-speed dual-clutch gearbox. It also has a 1.56 kWh lithium-ion polymer hybrid battery pack sending juice to the small electric motor.
On the other hand, the 2021 Kia Niro PHEV has the same gasoline engine and electric motor as the hybrid version producing 139 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. The difference is a larger 8.9 kWh battery pack, allowing 26 miles of all-electric range before the battery runs out of juice. The Niro PHEV is EPA-rated at 46 mpg.
The 2021 Kia Niro Hybrid is available in five trim models: LX, LXS, Touring, Touring SE, and EX Premium. Base prices start at $25,865 (an increase of $100 over last year’s model), while the top-of-the-line Niro Hybrid EX Premium starts at $34,125 (inclusive of $1,175 destination fees).
If you like the 2021 Kia Niro PHEV, you can choose from three available trims: LXS, EX, and EX Premium, with base prices starting at $30,765. Both the Niro Hybrid and Niro PHEV are available to order now. The new 2021 all-electric Niro EV is also coming later this year.
The final phase of Ram’s limited-edition “Build to Serve” truck line launches
Ram has been building special limited edition “Build to Serve” trucks to celebrate the United States Armed Forces. So far, the automaker has built these special trucks to honor all five branches of the United States Armed Forces. The fifth and final installment in the series introduces 500 units in a color called Spitfire and 750 in Bright White.
The military branch-inspired interior will be available in showrooms starting in Q2 of 2021. The Built to Serve edition’s fifth installment offers a maritime force-inspired theme with both exterior color options featuring a black interior with orange accent stitching. With the fifth and final version of the truck revealed, each of the five US military service branches has been honored by Ram with two specially selected exterior paint colors meant to evoke the spirit, mission, and history of that service.
Built to Serve edition Ram trucks were made in the following numbers and colors. Ram made 1000 units in Gator and 1000 in Diamond Black Crystal. Ram produced 1000 in Ceramic Gray and 1000 in Patriot Blue. 1250 units were built in Anvil with 1500 produced in Billet Silver Metallic.
In the series, 1000 trucks were made in Tank and 1000 in Flame Red. This fifth and final installment are the rarest of the special edition trucks, with only 500 produced in Spitfire and 750 made in Bright White. All Built to Serve trucks get 20-inch aluminum wheels with a unique Technical Gray finish along with body-color wheel flares.
All the trucks feature unique Built to Serve instrument panel badging, optional lockable center storage console, deeply bolstered cloth and vinyl sport seats, black onyx chrome interior trim, and all-weather slush mats. The trucks also include the 4×4 Off-Road Group and are available on all body styles and with all powertrains.
Manhart MH3 600 and MH4 600 are spicier versions of BMW’s M3 and M4
German tuning brand Manhart has a nifty pair of new BMWs to call its own: The MH3 600 and MH4 600. Based on the all-new G80 BMW M3 sedan and G82 M4 coupe, both the MH3 600 and MH4 600 receive a plethora of upgrades, including a 600-plus horsepower turbocharged inline-six motor.
Manhart starts with the 2021 M3 and M4 Competition models, both pumping out 510 horsepower from the factory. After installing a Manhart MHtronik Powerbox, the inline-six motor has a new maximum output of 620+ horsepower, around 100 more horses than stock. Additionally, you have 553 pound-feet of torque at your disposal.
The mods include a Manhart Performance cat-back or OPF-back exhaust system with twin carbon tailpipes to unleash those spent gasses. According to Manhart, their Mhtronik Powerbox is also applicable to a standard M3 or M4, allowing the motor to churn out 590 horsepower. If you’re keeping count, that’s 117 more horsepower than a typical M3’s 473-horsepower output. Nice.
Other upgrades include new H&R lowering springs, staggered Concave One forged wheels developed in-house by Manhart, and a sprinkling of carbon-fiber exterior bits to improve aerodynamics, including a new hood, front splitter, rear spoiler, and rear diffuser. Manhart is also developing a unique set of side flaps for MH3 600 and MH4 600.
Of course, no Manhart creation is complete without a set of body decals. You get a gold decal kit for the MH3 600 and MH4 600, including side stripes and racing stripes. What’s more, you can have gold pinstriping on the wheels if you like a bit more bling in your Bimmer.
The 2021 BMW M3 and M4 (including the 4-Series in general) were targets of blatant criticism upon debuting last year, and it all has something to do with that oversized kidney grille. But looking at Manhart’s MH3 600 and MH4 600, the stealthy vibe fits both vehicles quite well. Dare we say Manhart has sorted out the M3 and M4’s polarizing façade?
And when you think about it, Manhart isn’t done with the M3 and M4. The 600-horsepower upgrade is only Phase 1 of the tuning program. Phase 2 involves more power, more noise, and more ridiculous exterior appendages, and we can’t wait to check it out soon.
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