Sports & Outdoors

Football is Coming: How to Watch NFL Games Without Cable

The most wonderful time of year is on its way! Get out your jerseys, and go get some beer and pigs-in-a-blanket, because football season will soon be upon us. In fact, if you watch preseason, it already is. If you love the game, but hate high cable bills, fear not. There are many ways to watch your favorite team without shelling out over $100/month for cable.

You May Not Need Cable to Watch NFL Games

If you live in the same city as your favorite team, you may not need cable to watch football games at all. Even if you cut the cord, you can still get basic broadcast television, where many cities air their hometown football team’s games live. If you have an older TV, you may need a digital converter box, but most newer televisions don’t require them. You’ll have access to CBS, ABC, Fox and NBC free, depending on how strong the local signal is.

Make Friends With Cable

If you’re not living in the same town as your team, you’re going to have to look at some different options. You might be able to catch the occasional broadcast game, but those few and far between match ups just aren’t enough for die-hard fans. Instead, look at your network of friends. Do any of them root for the same team as you do? Out of those that do, who has a cable package capable of viewing the games on a weekly basis? Once you’ve identified them, schmooze away to score a weekly invite.

Head to the Bar

Have a regular watering hole? Talk to the bartender before the season starts to see if they will play the games for you while you pay them your patronage. This probably won’t work if you’re living in another football town, so in these cases look for bars themed around your team. A great example is the Steelers. In almost any region in the country, you can find a Steelers Nation bar that will be playing the Pittsburgh game as it airs. Though Yuengling is not served at all locations.

Order the NFL Game Pass

If you’re coming up dry on all of these options, or you just want the comfort of watching the game in your own home at a lower cost, take a look at the NFL Game Pass. This is an option that will let you watch any game on any device. Most preseason games are aired live, but regular season and playoff games air after they have been completed. No Sunday games are viewable until after all the 4 PM games are over, but Monday, Thursday and Saturday games can be viewed after the game you want to watch is completed. Just be sure to stay off social media, and turn your phone on airplane mode until you get a chance to watch yourself.  Avoiding any unwanted spoiler texts or tweets is essential.

This option runs you $100/season, which may end up being comparable to the cost of alcohol when you are going to a local bar. Plus, it offers the convenience of being able to view at home, and can be made even cheaper when you use promo codes. One hundred dollars per season is a lot cheaper than paying $100+/month for the right cable package.

Whomever you’re rooting for, and wherever you’re living, there are more affordable ways to be a tried-and-true fan than throwing over a grand a year at cable. Be frugal, be smart, and enjoy every minute of every game.