Patently Apple briefly noted on Dec. 16 that the "NFL-Apple Sunday Ticket talks threaten to stretch into the New Year." Two days later and we're learning that Apple has dropped out of the running as did Disney leaving the battle between Amazon and Google.
Engadget reports that "In 2021, Apple was considered the frontrunner to secure streaming rights to the National Football League’s Sunday Ticket package. Now, a year later, the company has reportedly dropped out of negotiations. The tidbit comes from a Puck article about Bob Iger’s surprise return to Disney. According to author Dylan Byers, Apple recently said no to the NFL “not because they can’t afford [the package], but because they don’t see the logic.”
With Disney reportedly bowing out of the negations as well, the talks have become a two-horse race between Amazon and Google. “Amazon can use [the deal] to drive Prime subscriptions; Google can use it to fuel its YouTube TV business,” adds Byers. Of the two suitors, Amazon is probably the best fit given that Prime Video is the exclusive home of Thursday Night Football for the next decade. For more, read the full Engadget report.
I'm sure that many Apple fans who would love to see NFL football on Apple TV+ are hoping that this rumor is incorrect.