NFL teases new version of Game Pass; watch full games on-demand the same day they're played

Yesterday I had some news for fans of videogame football; today's post is for fans of the real NFL.

One of the heartaches (for an NFL fan) of moving to another part of the country is losing access to the team you're used to watching every weekend. When Sunday comes around the local team is always on TV but it's a crap shoot as to whether 'your' team gets any screen time.

Of course there are options like DirecTV's NFL Sunday Ticket but they're pricey if you're not a DirecTV customer. (The cheap tier of Sunday Ticket will cost you about $250.) You have to be a pretty serious fan to get value out of that.

But now there's hope from the NFL itself. According to a post at TechCrunch the NFL is retiring its Game Rewind service in favor of a re-vamped Game Pass service.

Prior to this year Game Pass was available only on a limited number of devices and it seemed different platforms had different limitations. For example, TechCrunch points out that the Apple TV version only had access to clips, not full games.

Starting this year Game Pass will be a more consistent experience and it'll be available on Xbox game consoles, Apple TV, other iOS devices, Android and Windows Store. That's the good news. The bad news is that it doesn't offer live games (except for out-of-market preseason games). Instead, Sunday day games will become available at the conclusion of the 4 PM ET games, and Sunday night, Monday night, Thursday night and Saturday games will become available after the games end. You can get all the details in the tiny text at the bottom of the Game Pass page.

No live games is a pretty big drawback, particularly for the night games. Sports fans will want to continue to rely on cable or OTA channels to watch the live games available in their area, but Games Pass could be a nice supplement to help us keep up on how our favorite, but geographically distant, team is doing. It's worth pointing out that the on-demand games are commercial-free so they should take considerably less time to watch than a live game.

What we don't know yet is the price and, given that this does feel like a supplemental service, I'd hope to see it be $10/month or even less. I should point out that Game Pass also lets you watch games from prior years (from 2009 to present) if you really want to study how a team evolves over time or relive great moments.

Game Rewind goes dark on July 31st so we can expect to see the new Game Pass spin up by then, though no date is official. The first preseason game is on August 8th so it's safe to assume it'll be up and running by then at the latest.

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