Watch AFC Championship online or live stream
As the New England Patriots march toward another AFC Championship, they’re embracing their self-described role as underdogs. Wide receiver Julian Edelman recently posted the hashtag #BETAGAINSTUS on Twitter.
Coach Andy Reid says the Kansas City Chiefs aren’t going to play into New England’s narrative.
But there are a number of really solid options for watching the game for free. Here’s a quick look at all your options.
When is the AFC Championship game?
- Date: Sunday, Jan. 20
- Time: 6:40 P.M. ET
- Channel: CBS
- Live Stream: on fuboTV (with free 7-day trial) or Hulu with Live TV (free 7-day trial)
Watch Patriots vs Chiefs free with a TV antenna
The first option you should consider if you’re not too close to kickoff is using a TV antenna to get CBS.
Using an antenna gets you the AFC Championship and lots of other programming free for life. And your picture quality will be uncompressed HD. A local cable company can’t even get picture quality that rivals digital signals captured by an antenna. That’s because cable providers have to compress those same signals to feed it through a cable cord into your home.
So do yourself a favor and get an antenna. These days, I’ve been using an Antop Smartpass, which comes with an LTE filter and an amplifier.
If you go the antenna route, chances are you will be all set to watch SuperBowl LIII on NBC.
Read my guide: How to Choose the Best TV Antenna & DVR for free tips on how to get over-the-air (OTA) channels. You might not live in an area where you can get antenna channels. If so, keep reading. There are plenty of other alternatives to cable to get a live stream of the game to your TV or iPhone.
Top pick: Watch AFC Championship online with fuboTV
fuboTV, the sports-first streaming platform, carries local CBS stations in 82 percent of U.S. households. The company has expanded their NFL coverage in the last year and a half. And it became the first live TV streaming service to offer select sporting events in 4K HDR. (There are no plans to stream the AFC game in 4K.)
fuboTV has 80+ channels in its entry-level lineup, including CBS, FOX, NBC, CBS Sports Network, NFL Network, PAC-12 Network and Big Ten Network.
You can quickly look over what local channels and regional sports networks are in your area.
fubo also carries a bunch of entertainment channels such as A&E, History, Bravo, HGTV, Food Network and Travel Channel. So you’ll be able to watch popular shows like Live PD and House Hunters.
Subscribers get 30 hours of Cloud DVR space to record games, and you can also use the on-demand feature called “Lookback” to watch games that aired within the last 72 hours. A fuboTV subscription costs $44.99 per month, but you’ll get $5 off your first month after a free 7 day trial.
fuboTV works on Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Android TV devices like NVIDIA Shield TV. You can watch the Patriots face off against the Chiefs live from a PC or a mobile app for iPhone and Android smartphones.
Check out fuboTV free for 7 days so you can get a live stream of the game. If you don’t like the service, just cancel online before your trial ends.
Runner up: Live Stream AFC Championship on Hulu with Live TV
Hulu with Live TV carries the most local CBS stations across the U.S. Subscribers get 60+ live channels, 50 hours of Cloud DVR and unlimited access to Hulu’s on-demand library. That’s the same library of movies, TV shows and Hulu Originals that people pay $7.99 per month for.
These two streaming services are bundled together for $40 per month. Look over what local channels will be in your lineup. You can watch on up to two devices at once, including Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV. When you’re not at home, you can use iPhones and Android smart phones.
Hulu lets you sign in to 35 apps with its Live TV subscription. So you can use your subscription to login to apps for WatchESPN, A&E and CBS and CBS Sports on your Roku or Fire TV.
So take advantage of the 7-day free trial to watch the AFC Championship, and see what you think about the service. There’s no contracts or obligation to keep the service. Just cancel online if you don’t like it.
Budget option: CBS All Access: AFC Championship live stream
CBS All Access offers a live stream of CBS in 200 markets, and all of its shows on-demand the day after the live broadcast. A subscription costs $5.99 per month, and you can check out a free trial of their service.
CBS All Access is home to exclusive shows like Star Trek Discovery and No Activity.
Subscribers can stream up two shows simultaneously on separate devices. CBS All Access let’s you try out its service free for a week.
AFC Championship Live Stream on PlayStation Vue
I was a longtime subscriber to PlayStation Vue until recently, and they provide a very solid service. PS Vue has CBS in select markets across the U.S.
A CBS live stream is available on the Access channel bundle for $39.99 per month. The Access plan gives you 48+ live channels. Bravo, CNN and National Geographic are among the channels in this package. A limitless Cloud DVR feature is offered as part of your subscription.
PlayStation Vue works on Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Android TV devices. You can also stream it on a PC. One drawback you should be aware of is that you will need to watch the game at home. PlayStation Vue offers a free 5-day trial.
Patriots vs Chiefs live stream with DirecTV Now
DirecTV Now will let you watch a live stream of the AFC Championship no matter where you are.
CBS is available across all four channel bundles offered by DirecTV Now. The least expensive bundle is $40 per month for 65 channels, including AMC, Animal Planet, History, HGTV and Viceland. DirecTV Now offers a free 7-day trial.
YouTube TV: Watch AFC Championship live online
YouTube TV made it a priority to include local channels when it began expanding its coverage across the U.S. So chances are you’ll be able to find a CBS live stream in many markets. You will get 40+ channels for $35 per month. The live streaming platform started out with just support for Chromecast and Apple TV via AirPlay.
So if you’re a Chromecast or iPhone user, you can take advantage of YouTube TV’s free 7-day trial, and watch the Patriots go head to head with the Jaguars on Sunday. YouTube TV now has apps for a number of Smart TVs that operate on Android TV software. NVIDIA Shield TV also got its own app. So far, there’s no app for Roku or Amazon Fire TV. You can try out YouTube TV.
Is the AFC Championship game on Sling TV?
No. According to Cablefax, CBS continues to be very selective about which streaming platforms the company partners with. Sling TV has no agreement to bring CBS to its platform anytime soon, so you’ll have to go elsewhere to watch the AFC Championship.
What’s the best way to watch the AFC Championship?
If you’re not buying an antenna to watch the game, I would go with fuboTV as your first option. You’ll get CBS, CBS Sports Network, NFL Network, Big Ten Network, PAC 12 Network, FS1 and FS2 as part of an 80+ channel bundle.
You’ll be able to use Cloud DVR to watch the game later or catch up on other sports using the “Lookback” option. Try fuboTV free for a week.
If fubo isn’t for you, then Hulu with Live TV is a solid pick as well because you’re getting 60+ live channels, 50 hours of Cloud DVR and the on-demand library that people pay $7.99 per month for. Try out Hulu with Live TV free for a week.
How are you going to watch the Chiefs and Patriots on Sunday? Tell fellow readers in the comments below.