NFL 2021: How to watch, stream Panthers vs. Texans on Thursday Night Football without cable – CNET

After two weeks of the 2021 NFL season, the Raiders and Broncos are the only two AFC teams without a loss. The 49ers, Rams and Cardinals are each 2-0 in the NFC West, which looks to be the toughest division in the league. The only other two undefeated teams reside in the NFC South — the Buccaneers and Panthers.

The Panthers are probably the most surprising 2-0 team. Led by second-year head coach Matt Rhule, New York Jets castoff quarterback Sam Darnold and do-everything running back Christian McCaffrey, the Panthers are in Houston tonight for Thursday Night Football against the 1-1 Texans, who will be without starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor. Rookie quarterback Davis Mills, third-round pick from Stanford, will start in place of the injured Taylor.

Kickoff is set for 5:20 p.m. PT (8:20 p.m. ET) on NFL Network. Here’s how to watch Thursday’s game, as well as the rest of the NFL season, without cable.

TNF

Christian McCaffrey and the Carolina Panthers take on the Houston Texans on Thursday Night Football.

Ken Murray/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

How to stream NFL games

Major streaming providers such as YouTube TV, Hulu Plus Live TV, FuboTV and DirecTV Stream offer nearly all the major channels you will need for football. This includes CBS, NBC and Fox as well as ESPN (which is needed for Monday Night Football). 

Sling TV offers NBC and Fox in some markets with its Blue package, but it lacks CBS. It’s also worth noting that to get ESPN you will either need to switch to its Orange package or go for its Blue and Orange bundle. 

Those who are fine with watching on phones or tablets, meanwhile, can also use the Yahoo Sports app to stream the games that are broadcast on your local stations for free.

What about RedZone and the NFL Network? 

All of those services above, with the exception of DirecTV Stream, offer the option to get RedZone and the NFL Network. RedZone will usually require you to spend another $10 or $11 per month as an add-on. 

If RedZone is all you care about, the cheapest option is getting Sling TV Blue for $35 per month and adding the $11 per month Sports Extra add-on. This gets you all the football channels with the exception of ESPN and CBS. 

How about Thursday Night Football? 

Most Thursday Night Football games will be broadcast on Fox, NFL Network and Amazon Prime Video. The Thursday Night Football games in September will be broadcast just on NFL Network, with Fox and Prime Video’s coverage starting in October.

Check out the full Thursday Night Football schedule here and our recommendations for the best ways to watch NFL without cable throughout the season.

What about Paramount Plus? 

Paramount Plus offers live CBS feeds with its Premium tier for $10 per month. Depending on where you live, however, your local CBS station (and those NFL games) might not be available. CBS offers livestreaming services in many markets; you can check for yourself if your area has live CBS streaming here

What about Peacock? 

All of NBC’s regular-season NFL games will be available to stream on its Peacock streaming service, so long as you pay for one of its Premium subscriptions. 

There are two of these tiers, a $5 per month Premium option that has ads (when watching nonlive content) and a $10 per month Premium Plus option that will stream nonlive content ad-free (and let you download some content to watch offline). 

Sling TV’s $35-a-month Blue plan includes NBC, Fox and the NFL Network. Enter your address here to see which local channels are available where you live. 

Note: This version of Sling TV does not include ESPN. For that, you’ll need to switch to the similarly priced Orange plan or go for the combined $50-per-month Orange and Blue bundle. RedZone is also available for an extra $11 per month.

Read our Sling TV review.

YouTube TV costs $65 a month and includes all the major football channels, with RedZone available for an extra $11 per month. Plug in your ZIP code on its welcome page to see which local networks are available in your area.

Read our YouTube TV review.

FuboTV costs $65 per month and has all the major NFL channels with RedZone available as an $11 per month add-on. Click here to see which local channels you get.

Read our FuboTV review.

Hulu with Live TV costs $65 a month and includes all the major football channels, with RedZone available for an extra $10 per month. Click the “View channels in your area” link on its welcome page to see which local channels are offered in your ZIP code.

Read our Hulu with Live TV review.

Formerly AT&T TV, DirecTV Stream’s basic $70-a-month package includes nearly all the major channels for football with the notable exceptions of RedZone and the NFL Network. You can use its channel lookup tool to see which local channels are available where you live.

Read our AT&T TV review.

Peacock will show NBC’s full slate of Sunday Night Football games. You will, however, need one of the service’s Premium plans to watch Sunday Night Football live and full-game replays, though highlights are available on the free tier. 

The ad-supported Premium plan costs $5 a month, and the ad-free Premium Plus plan costs $10 a month.

Read our Peacock review.

Those looking for CBS games will be able to stream them on Paramount Plus with its $10 per month Premium tier. You can check for yourself if your area has live CBS streaming here

All of the live TV streaming services above offer free trials (except Peacock, which just has a free tier that doesn’t stream live NFL games), allow you to cancel anytime and require a solid internet connection. Looking for more information? Check out our live-TV streaming services guide.

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