This week officially kicked off NFL live streams for the 2023 regular season. And while Thursday’s game between the Detroit Lions and Kansas City Chiefs was the first to move the chains, it wasn’t until Sunday that it felt like football was truly back.
Luckily, I got to spend my NFL Sunday with NFL Sunday Ticket and NFL RedZone. RedZone I had used plenty before — in fact, I’d argue it's the best way to spend an NFL Sunday. But NFL Sunday Ticket had typically put me off due to its high price tag, currently starting at $299 for the entire season if you also have a YouTube TV subscription.
I now strongly regret that decision. After having spent the entire slate of afternoon games using Sunday Ticket, I have concluded that it’s simply the best way to watch the NFL, especially if you live away from your favorite team. As a San Francisco 49ers fan living in Atlanta, it was awesome getting to watch the Niners beat up the Pittsburgh Steelers on a Sunday afternoon.
Here’s the thing though — as awesome as that was, it wasn’t even the best part.
Multiview is awesome — and you should supercharge it with RedZone
I opted for adding NFL RedZone to my Sunday Ticket subscription and it was quickly apparent that I made the right choice. The reason? YouTube TV’s multiview feature.
This feature has been around for a while, and it allows you to watch up to four channels at once. But YouTube TV has supercharged it for the NFL season, giving you the option to basically combine any four NFL games on a single screen. The offerings are still technically curated by YouTube — you can’t create your own custom multiview. But for NFL Sunday Ticket, I found that YouTube TV had curated every single combination.
And multiview is super easy to use. The Home screen already gives you several multiview options to choose from right away. But I recommend choosing the primary game you want to watch and then tabbing down to the multiview menu and selecting “Watch in Multiview.” From here, you’ll be able to pick any combination of games with your primary game always listed as the first game in the multiview.
But while multiview offers you up to four games at once, if you have NFL RedZone, you only need two. I picked the multiview with the 49ers vs Steelers game and RedZone and just switched back and forth between the two. I stuck with the Niners game while it was active, then as soon as a commercial break hit, I just switched over to RedZone for hours of commercial-free NFL football. This resulted in an action-packed Sunday that kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time, and I’ll never spend an NFL Sunday differently again.
NFL Sunday Ticket may not be perfect but YouTube got most things right
While I don’t know that I explored every single inch of NFL Sunday Ticket on YouTube TV, I definitely put it through its paces. And because of that, I did discover a couple of quirks.
First, while YouTube TV does allow you to catch up with key plays, it doesn’t let you do that if you queue up the game from a multiview. So if you’re like me and sat down just past kickoff, select the game you want to watch, catch up with key plays and then switch to a multiview.
Second, watching on your laptop or phone is not nearly as enjoyable. There’s no multiview option on either platform and catching up through key plays isn’t available on a web browser.
But overall, YouTube TV nailed it. The games were easy to find, multiview was awesome and I was even able to watch on the YouTube app despite being subscribed through YouTube TV. I wasn’t able to watch every game this way — I could only watch local market games through YouTube TV — but it was nice to know that I had the option to use either app for the majority of games and NFL RedZone.
So take it from me. If you’re an NFL fan, you need NFL Sunday Ticket, and I really recommend adding NFL RedZone. You’ll thank me next Sunday when you’re watching hours of nonstop football and loving every second.
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Malcolm McMillan is a senior writer for Tom's Guide, covering all the latest in streaming TV shows and movies. That means news, analysis, recommendations, reviews and more for just about anything you can watch, including sports! If it can be seen on a screen, he can write about it. Previously, Malcolm had been a staff writer for Tom's Guide for over a year, with a focus on artificial intelligence (AI), A/V tech and VR headsets.
Before writing for Tom's Guide, Malcolm worked as a fantasy football analyst writing for several sites and also had a brief stint working for Microsoft selling laptops, Xbox products and even the ill-fated Windows phone. He is passionate about video games and sports, though both cause him to yell at the TV frequently. He proudly sports many tattoos, including an Arsenal tattoo, in honor of the team that causes him to yell at the TV the most.