An oil painting image of Travis Kelce as a DirecTV spokesperson. An oil painting image of Travis Kelce as a DirecTV spokesperson. (DirecTV.)

In August, DirecTV began to roll out an advertising campaign featuring Travis Kelce of the Kansas City Chiefs.

In the ads, Kelce is DirecTV’s “Overly Direct spokesperson” and the first ad talked about DirecTV’s Sports Central hub and its SportsPack lineup of networks.

Heading into the 2023 NFL season, the league isn’t too thrilled with the former Sunday Ticket partner, saying it is “aware of consumer confusion” from DirecTV’s ads, per Joe Flint of the Wall Street Journal.

Here’s the full statement from NFL EVP of Communications Jeff Miller.

“YouTube and YouTube TV are the only place to go for fans at home wanting to subscribe to NFL Sunday Ticket. We are aware of consumer confusion resulting from advertising in the marketplace.  The NFL wants its millions of fans to know where to get NFL Sunday Ticket and that we stand against deceptive advertising.”

The first Kelce ad in question doesn’t mention Sunday Ticket or the NFL at all, but some could possibly imply that you can watch every game via DirecTV. You actually can, but only by watching NFL Sunday Ticket through the YouTube app – which you can do through various other providers and streaming platforms. It’s not an exclusive arrangement anymore.

DirecTV isn’t even the only carrier to advertise the ability to watch Sunday Ticket through their service. Way back in February, a release from Dish dropped into my inbox proclaiming “DISH TV customers can get seamless access to NFL Sunday Ticket this fall with the YouTube app on Hopper!” and “DISH becomes the best choice to watch NFL games with access to live TV, on demand content, local channels, streaming apps like Prime Video, top sports channels, including NFL Network, NFL RedZone, ESPN and more, and now NFL Sunday Ticket on YouTube.”

Ultimately, this is a consequence of DirecTV losing its Sunday Ticket exclusivity. If a carrier or streamer has a YouTube app available on their service, a viewer can watch Sunday Ticket on their service. DirecTV also retained its rights to commercially distribute Sunday Ticket through a deal with the NFL’s new EverPass Media joint venture, potentially adding even more confusion to the fray for bars and restaurants wondering about how to purchase Sunday Ticket this fall.

About Joe Lucia

I hate your favorite team. I also sort of hate most of my favorite teams.