With less than a month left in the regular season, big changes are starting to occur in both NFL conferences. The Baltimore Ravens are coming on strong and the once unbeatable San Francisco 49ers have seemingly lost some gas. That makes this week’s lineups even more exciting.
Catching your favorite team isn’t always an easy thing to do, though (and often isn’t inexpensive). Heading to your local sports bar inevitably racks up a bill and your home cable system (assuming it even broadcasts the game you want to want to watch) isn’t cheap either.
Fortunately, there are alternatives. Rooting for your favorite team doesn’t have to be an expensive affair (letting you save money for tailgating). Here’s a look at who’s playing this week—and several different ways to watch the games.
Which NFL teams are playing this week? And what channels are airing the games?
If last week taught us anything, it’s that anything can happen in the NFL. The Bengals, Dolphins and Redskins all won, for crying out loud. That gives hope to a number of teams who are still angling for a playoff berth.
Here’s a look who’s playing this week. (The home team is listed second.)
Sunday, December 8
Indianapolis Colts vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS
Baltimore Ravens vs. Buffalo Bills, 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS
Detroit Lions vs. Minnesota Vikings, 1:00 p.m. ET on Fox
Washington Redskins vs. Green Bay Packers, 1:00 p.m. ET on Fox
Denver Broncos vs. Houston Texans, 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS
San Francisco 49ers vs. New Orleans Saints, 1:00 p.m. ET on Fox
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Cleveland Browns, 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS
Carolina Panthers vs. Atlanta Falcons, 1:00 p.m. ET on Fox
Miami Dolphins vs. New York Jets, 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS
Los Angeles Chargers vs. Jacksonville Jaguars, 4:05 p.m. ET on Fox
Kansas City Chiefs vs. New England Patriots, 4:25 p.m. ET on CBS
Tennessee Titans vs. Oakland Raiders, 4:25 p.m. ET on CBS
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Arizona Cardinals, 4:25 p.m. ET on CBS
Seattle Seahawks vs. Los Angeles Rams, 8:20 p.m. ET on NBC
Monday, December 9
New York Giants vs. Philadelphia Eagles, 8:15 p.m. ET on ESPN
How can I watch my local NFL team for free—even if I am out of market?
The best way to watch any NFL game for free on a big screen is with a good HD antenna. Local and regional games are broadcast by CBS, NBC and Fox—meaning you’ve got a good chance of capturing the game over the air, which costs nothing beyond the equipment prices. Be sure to test the antenna in multiple locations in your home to find the most reliable signal.
How can I stream NFL games live online if I don’t have a cable subscription?
There are loads of online options to watch NFL games, some completely free and others with free trial periods. If you’re not near a TV, you can log into Fox.com to watch the game or use the Fox Now app. CBS offers its All Access streaming service, which has a one week free trial, followed by a $6 monthly charge. And NBC’s Web site and apps will let you watch live programming on the go. Another option? Yahoo Sports and the NFL have teamed to stream live NFL games on mobile devices this year. Just download the Yahoo Sports app or Yahoo Fantasy Football mobile app and watch all local and primetime games on phones and tablets. Prefer another method? Here are a few that work just as well.
This free service lets you watch local broadcast channels with no monthly fees or contracts. The hiccup is: It only services part of the country.
The free trial is 5 days. Subscription packages start at $50 per month.
Hulu with Live TV
You can try the service free for a week. Once that’s up, you’ll pay $45 per month.
After a seven day trial, you can expect monthly charges of $50.
This sports-focused cord cutting service carries CBS in most markets. There’s a seven-day free trial, followed by monthly charges of $55.
Can I watch NFL games on Amazon?
If you’ve got an Amazon Prime subscription, you can now catch a limited number of match-ups. The online retailer has struck a deal with NBC to air select Thursday night games this season. The December 12 game — the New York Jets vs. the Baltimore Ravens — will be the last one aired on Amazon this season. All games will be featured in the Prime Video section. (If you don’t have Prime, you can sign up for a 30-day free trial.)
Does the NFL offer any viewing packages to watch the games I want?
The NFL App will let you stream games that are being broadcast locally in your market on Sundays. If you want to watch an ‘out of market’ game, you’ve got two choices.
NFL Game Pass
There are couple hitches with this service. You can’t use it to watch live games, but you can watch anything once its main broadcast ends. There’s a seven day free trial, after which you’re looking at a $100 charge per season.
NFL Sunday Ticket
DirecTV customers have access to it, but if you’re not a subscriber and live in an area where it’s not available, you can watch any NFL game live, online or on TV for $73.49 per month or $293.36 for the entire season.