Verizon will pay the NFL more than $20 million to stream one regular-season football game over the internet this fall: A week-three matchup between the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Baltimore Ravens, set to take place in London.
Verizon already pays the NFL handsomely to stream games on mobile devices, but that deal only includes prime-time and local-market games, and the streams are limited to viewers in the U.S.
This one-game deal, which the NFL announced Wednesday, means Verizon can stream the game on any of its properties, including AOL, to an international audience. That presumably includes Yahoo, assuming the Verizon-Yahoo tie-up closes in time. The game will also be on TV, but only through local CBS affiliates in Jacksonville and Baltimore.
Verizon is paying roughly $21 million for the game. In 2015 it paid around $20 million. The Wall Street Journal first reported the news.
When Yahoo streamed the game two years ago, it was able to attract around 2.3 million viewers — about a fifth of the ratings TV networks normally get for a national game. But in order to get that audience, Yahoo aggressively auto-played the game to its users — if you visited Yahoo’s home page, or checked your Yahoo email account, or visited Tumblr, you were likely to be counted in Yahoo’s audience.
The new deal comes at a time when the league is exploring a number of alternatives to traditional television distribution for its games. Last season, Twitter streamed 10 NFL games; this year, Amazon is paying $50 million to stream 10 games behind its Amazon Prime paywall.
Eventually, the league hopes these digital players will compete for bigger rights packages alongside the likes of NBC and CBS.
Here’s a statement from the NFL:
“Verizon will be the NFL’s exclusive digital partner to deliver the live stream of the Week 3 International Series game in London to a global audience. The Baltimore Ravens - Jacksonville Jaguars game on September 24 from Wembley Stadium will be streamed live across Verizon’s portfolio of platforms including AOL, Fios, go90 and Complex. The game will also be made available on the NFL Mobile app (NFL.com/mobile) to Verizon Wireless customers, and the NFL app on Xbox One and Windows 10. TV access will be offered through an over-the-air broadcast in the Baltimore and Jacksonville local markets, as well as on Sky Sports in the U.K.”
This article originally appeared on Recode.net.