How to watch week 3 NFL games live online for free—without cable
Things are getting serious in the NFL.
Week three of the 2021 season started ugly for the Carolina Panthers. The team managed to defeat the Texans, but at a cost—with injuries to running back Christian McCaffrey and recent first-round draft pick Jaycee Horn.
By week three, the early season jitters are gone and the real performances start to shine. It’s a chance for fans, wagerers, and opponents to get an idea of who’s a threat and who’s a speed-bump on the way to the playoffs.
It’s shaping up to be a beautiful weekend across much of the country, though, so the idea of sitting on the couch might be less appealing, even for the more die-hard fans. If you prefer to be out and won’t be at a sports bar this weekend, we’ve got a look at who’s playing this week—and several different options for viewing the match-ups.
Which NFL teams are playing this week? And what channels are airing the games?
Sunday has plenty of action, but week four is all building up to Monday night, when the Seattle Seahawks face the Dallas Cowboys, one of the NFL’s biggest rivalries.
Here’s a look at everyone who’s playing this week. (The home team is listed second.)
Sunday, Sept. 26
Los Angeles Chargers vs. Kansas City Chiefs, 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS
Arizona Cardinals vs. Jacksonville Jaguars, 1:00 p.m. ET on Fox
Chicago Bears vs. Cleveland Browns, 1:00 p.m. ET on Fox
Washington Football Team vs. Buffalo Bills, 1:00 p.m. ET on Fox
Indianapolis Colts vs. Tennessee Titans, 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS
New Orleans Saints vs. New England Patriots, 1:00 p.m. ET on Fox
Atlanta Falcons vs. New York Giants, 1:00 p.m. ET on Fox
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Pittsburgh Steelers, 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS
Baltimore Ravens vs. Detroit Lions, 1:00 p.m. ET on CBS
New York Jets vs. Denver Broncos, 4:05 p.m. ET on CBS
Miami Dolphins vs. Las Vegas Raiders, 4:05 p.m. ET on CBS
Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Los Angeles Rams, 4:25 p.m. ET on Fox
Seattle Seahawks vs. Minnesota Vikings, 4:25 p.m. ET on Fox
Green Bay Packers vs. San Francisco 49ers, 8:20 p.m. ET on NBC
Monday, Sept. 27
Philadelphia Eagles vs. Dallas Cowboys, 8:15 p.m. ET on ABC and ESPN
How can I watch my local NFL team for free—even if I am out of market?
The best way to watch any sort of network programming for free on a big screen is with a good HD antenna. And NFL games are one of the easiest to view, since they air on broadcast networks, meaning you’ll be able to watch even if you don’t have a cable subscription. To ensure you’re getting the most reliable signal, be sure to test the antenna in multiple locations in your home.
How can I stream NFL games live online if I don’t have a cable subscription?
There is a wide variety of options for people who would prefer to watch on their phone, tablet, or some other online-device:
NBC’s streaming service will give you access to Sunday night games and others aired on that network. You can get a seven-day free trial, followed by a $5 or $10 monthly charge. (The free version of Peacock does not include live sports.)
CBS’s streaming service will give you access to games aired on that network. You can get a one-month free trial, followed by a $6 monthly charge.
Hulu with Live TV
You can try the service free for a week. Once that’s up, you’ll pay $65 per month.
After a two-week trial, you can expect monthly charges of $65.
Dish Network’s Sling lower tiered “Orange” plan will run you $35 per month. Adding the more comprehensive “Blue” plan bumps the cost to $50-per-month. You’ll have a 7-day free trial first—and right now, the cord cutting service is dropping the first month’s bill to $10.
Formerly known as DirecTV Now and AT&T TVNow, AT&T’s streaming service will run you $70 per month and up. There is no longer a free trial option.
Disney’s bundle of Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+ can be enjoyed for free for seven days, after which you’ll pay $13.99 per month for all three combined
This sports-focused cord cutting service carries broadcast networks in most markets. There’s a seven-day free trial, followed by monthly charges of $65-$80, depending on the channels you choose.
Can I watch NFL games on Amazon?
You’re getting closer to being able to do so, but not this week. Amazon Prime subscribers will be able to watch 11 games this year (including the Minnesota Vikings vs. New Orleans Saints on Christmas Day). The online retailer has struck a deal with Fox to air select Thursday night games. The first co-aired game occurs Oct. 8, with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers facing the Chicago Bears. They’ll be featured in the Prime Video section and Amazon will also offer the NFL Network pregame show before each game at 7:30 p.m. ET.
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?
Three, in fact:
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.
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.
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.
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