Thursday Night Football will soon be available to anyone with a Twitter handle. This morning, the NFL announced plans to stream ten regular season games, in-game highlights, and pre-game Periscope broadcasts on the social platform.
Amazon, Yahoo and Verizon also were competing for the streaming rights, according to Bloomberg.
Last season, the NFL streamed one regular season game exclusively on Yahoo!, in the league’s first foray into digital broadcast. About 15 million unique viewers watched the live stream, according to the NFL, which is comparable to an average Monday Night Football game.
Building on that success, the Twitter partnership is part of the NFL’s “tri-cast” plan to distribute games via broadcast, cable, and digital. The deal is a win for Twitter too, as the company seeks to prioritize its live event offerings with founder Jack Dorsey at the helm.
“That live aspect is such a good direction for the company — a focus on the things that really bring that sense of electricity, that liveness, in every part of the product, whether that be search, or the timeline, or conversations, or, you know, replies that almost feel like really, really live,” Dorsey told Bloomberg last month.
After a series of setbacks, Twitter brought Dorsey back on to once again serve as CEO. It appears the NFL deal is the latest attempt to expand the platform’s reach and bring in new users.
“This is about transforming the fan experience with football. People watch NFL games with Twitter today,” Dorsey said in a press release. “Now they’ll be able to watch right on Twitter Thursday nights.”