DirecTV NFL Sunday ticket commercial

TV Commercial Review

Heart or Humor


The ad is funny

In the world of sports broadcasting, few deals have been as controversial as DirecTV’s exclusive multi-year, $12 billion contract with the NFL for the Sunday Ticket package. The deal, which extends through 2022, has come under legal scrutiny for alleged antitrust violations and deceptive advertising practices. This article aims to dissect the intricacies of the campaign and compare it with similar advertising efforts in the sports broadcasting industry.

The DirecTV-NFL Deal: A Brief Overview

DirecTV secured an exclusive deal with the NFL to offer the Sunday Ticket package, which allows subscribers to watch every out-of-market NFL game on Sundays. The deal increased DirecTV’s licensing fees from $1 billion to $1.4 billion per season. Businesses, depending on their size, pay between $2,314 and $120,000 a season for access to Sunday Ticket.

A baby wearing a blue beanie featured in a DirecTV NFL Sunday ticket commercial.
A cute baby wearing a blue beanie was featured in a DirecTV NFL Sunday ticket commercial.

The Antitrust Lawsuit

The latest class-action lawsuit, filed in a California federal court, alleges that DirecTV and the NFL collude to overcharge bar and restaurant owners. The suit contends that the exclusive nature of the Sunday Ticket package violates two sections of the Sherman Antitrust Act. The lead plaintiff is San Francisco pub the Mucky Duck, represented by antitrust lawyer Michael Hausfeld.

Comparison with Other Leagues

Unlike the NFL’s exclusive deal with DirecTV, other major professional sports leagues like the NBA, NHL, and MLB offer their live out-of-market game packages through multiple pay-TV operators. This fosters competition and likely results in more competitive pricing. THEREFORE, the NFL’s exclusive arrangement appears to be an outlier in the sports broadcasting landscape.

A group of people sitting on a bus in a DirecTV NFL Sunday ticket commercial.
A group of fans sits on a bus in a DirecTV NFL Sunday ticket commercial.

Deceptive Advertising Claims

Separate from the antitrust issues, the NFL has accused DirecTV of deceptive advertising. DirecTV’s new ad campaign features Chiefs TE Travis Kelce and claims that DirecTV Sports Central “gives you access to every game.” The NFL argues that this is misleading, as YouTube and YouTube TV are the only platforms for fans at home wanting to subscribe to NFL Sunday Ticket.

Comparison with Comcast’s Advertising

In contrast, Comcast, which offers NBA, NHL, and MLB packages, has been transparent in its advertising, clearly stating the terms and conditions of its sports packages. DirecTV’s vague and potentially misleading advertising starkly contrasts Comcast’s more straightforward approach.

The Larger Implications

The lawsuit and the NFL’s accusations could have far-reaching implications for DirecTV, especially as it tries to close a $49 billion merger deal with AT&T. The case also highlights the need for transparency in advertising and fair competition in the sports broadcasting market.


The DirecTV NFL Sunday Ticket campaign is a complex web of legal and ethical questions. From antitrust concerns to deceptive advertising, the deal has opened a Pandora’s box that could reshape the landscape of sports broadcasting. As it stands, DirecTV’s campaign serves as a cautionary tale for advertisers and broadcasters alike, emphasizing the need for clarity, honesty, and fair competition in the industry.

In the end, whether it’s DirecTV, the NFL, or the bars and restaurants that subscribe to the Sunday Ticket package, the real losers in this saga may very well be the fans and consumers, who bear the brunt of these alleged anti-competitive and deceptive practices.



A funny campaign but deceptive.

Heart or Humor9.0
Reader Rating: ( 1 vote ) 9.5

Related TV Commercials

Post A Comment For The Creator: Liviu

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.