After a Sunday when multiple streaming services choked with their NFL streaming options, ESPN+ gets its chance to shine with the Monday night opener. The Seahawks will face their old quarterback, Russell Wilson, now with the Denver Broncos. The game and the popular ManningCast edition will be available to ESPN+ subscribers.
Most people who have ESPN+ likely have a backup option in the form of a live TV streaming service or a cable package, this year features the first exclusive game on the platform: Trevor Lawrence and the Jacksonville Jaguars take on Wilson and the Broncos live from London on Oct. 30.
As more streaming services offer exclusive live events, their reliability becomes a bigger issue. Subscribers to CBS All Access lost their feed of the Super Bowl last year. If issues like that persist, fan frustration will boil over. The promise of streaming sports is great, but that won’t matter if fans can’t watch the games.
This issue is especially important for football fans. Of the top 100 most-watched TV events last year, 75 were NFL games. Sports as a whole accounted for 97 of the top 100 broadcasts. It’s been argued that sports are the only thing keeping audiences from fleeing live television entirely.
We’ll find out tonight if ESPN+ is ready to shine in prime time.
ESPN+ NFL Highlights
|NFL Week||Date||Monday Night Football Game||Network|
|1||Sept. 12||Denver Broncos at Seattle Seahawks||ESPN+|
|2||Sept. 19||Minnesota Vikings at Philadelphia Eagles||ESPN+|
|3||Sept. 26||Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants||ESPN+|
|8||Oct. 30||Denver Broncos vs. Jacksonville Jaguars||ESPN+|
|15||Dec. 19||Los Angeles Rams at Green Bay Packers||ESPN+|
|17||Jan. 2||Buffalo Bills at Cincinnati Bengals||ESPN+|
|Wild Card^||Jan. 16||TBD||ESPN+|
^ = Super Wild Card Weekend
Is There a Free Trial of ESPN+?
While there isn’t a free trial to ESPN+, you can save nearly $11 per month if you sign up for the Disney Bundle. You can get ESPN+, Hulu, and Disney+ for as cheap as $13.99 even though signing up for all three services individually would cost $24.97.