San Francisco 49ers fans have had quite a bit to cheer about in recent years, but those outside the Bay Area will find it difficult to watch all the football games they want. But there are solutions – read on to learn them all!
In a hurry? NFL Sunday Ticket is the main option for US football fans to watch the out-of-market NFL games, but there are other choices too:
- ExpressVPN: Get the games you want to watch no matter where you are with private browsing and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Fubo: Watch all local and primetime games as well as all the action Sunday afternoon with NFL RedZone. Sign up for a free trial!
- NFL Sunday Ticket: Available through YouTube and YouTube TV.
- DAZN Canada is streaming every NFL game live, which means preseason, regular games, playoff games, and of course the Super Bowl.
The 49ers were reigning champions when Joe Montana was throwing the ball to Jerry Rice, and they could be again if Trey Lance and Deebo Samuel become the driving force for a new dynasty.
Until that day arrives, 49ers fans will have to dig a little deeper than the major TV networks if they want to see all of the action every Sunday.
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San Francisco 49ers Game This Week
- Sun Dec 10 : vs Seattle Seahawks (Fox)
Or just check when SanFran is playing next…
How to watch Out-of-Market San Francisco 49ers Games
To understand why 49ers games are not on TV as much as they used to be, you need to understand how networks operate.
There’s a flagship station that broadcasts nationwide, and then there are affiliate stations around the country that air the national broadcast mixed with local news, sports, and current events.
Broadcasting agreements require these affiliate stations to air local NFL games, so the Fox affiliate in San Francisco shows most 49ers contests live.
If you live in a different part of the country and want to watch some NFL football, you’ll find live games on CBS (if the local team plays in the AFC) and on Fox (if the local team plays in the NFC). Both of these networks will also air at least one premium contest that’s usually billed as a game of the week.
These are the contests that network executives think will draw the biggest audiences, which means they either involve top teams or are attracting lots of media attention. The networks call these contests out-of-market games, and the 49ers often appear in them because they consistently reach the playoffs and perform in a division filled with stars.
What Channels Do I Need to Watch Out-of-Market San Francisco 49ers Games
There are lots of chances for out-of-town 49ers fans to watch their favorite team play, but they cannot rely on network TV if they want to see every game.
Baseball, basketball, and hockey fans have no problem finding out-of-market action, thanks to services like MLB TV, NBA League Pass, and ESPN+.
If you don’t live in San Francisco but still want to watch the 49ers this NFL season, here are some of the options you have:
- NFL Sunday Ticket: This is now available to stream in two ways – you can get it directly from YouTube (for roughly $499) or as an add-on (for $349) with your YouTube TV subscription ($72.99/mo).
- NFL+ Premium: The NFL’s streaming service allows fans to watch games on laptops, tablets, and phones, as long as they match is being broadcast by their local networks. Fans looking for out-of-market action have to make do with highlights and live SiriusXM audio, but the service only costs $9.99 per month and a 7-day free trial is available. (NFL+ review)
- NFL RedZone: If you want nothing but action, you will love NFL RedZone because it shows every touchdown, without ads. The channel also shows replays of every change of possession and all major incidents. Most cable TV providers and streaming services offer NFL RedZone but don’t expect to see the 49ers unless they score or get a turnover. (NFL RedZone Out-of-Market)
- SiriusXM: Listening to live NFL games is a lot easier than watching live NFL games. You will be able to find audio feeds of San Francisco 49ers games on SiriusXM and NFL+ Premium.
- NFL Game Pass International: This is a service that allows football fans outside the United States to watch all NFL games live.
- VPN: A virtual private network won’t provide you with content like a streaming service or TV network, but it could help you watch broadcasts from regions outside your geographical area. (NFL Out-of-Market Viewing With VPNs)
- Friends and sports bars: If you have a friend with a YouTube or YouTube TV subscription, ask them about splitting the cost of an NFL Sunday Ticket package if you want to watch the 49ers each week. If that isn’t an option, there’s probably a sports bar in your area where fans like to gather each Sunday.
Watch the 49ers on NFL RedZone
During a typical NFL broadcast which lasts for roughly three hours, the ball is actually in play for only about nine minutes.
If you would rather watch touchdowns than beer commercials, NFL RedZone has you covered, with nonstop highlights and no commercials.
With the emergence of popular streaming services, many of them offer a sports package that includes NFL RedZone. One of our favorites is Fubo (formerly called FuboTV): Fubo’s standard channel package costs $74.99/mo and provides over 130 channels of entertainment. For an added $10.99/mo, the Sports Plus add-on includes NFL RedZone and nearly 30 other live sports channels. (See our Fubo review.)
You can record games throughout the NFL season with the cloud DVR storage that comes with live TV streaming services. Steam on multiple devices too at home and away.
See also our NFL RedZone page for more details.
Use a VPN to Watch San Francisco 49ers Games Out of Market
When you use a VPN, any website you visit will see the VPN’s IP address and not yours. This means you can be in a different location to the one shown by your VPN, and the website you’re accessing won’t know.
This can be very useful for 49ers fans who want to watch games on NFL+ Premium or NFL Game Pass International that are only available to audiences in certain markets. Just make sure the VPN service you pick has server locations within these markets.
Learn how to stream out-of-market games with the NFL + VPN guide.
Unblock Your Favorite Events & Teams With a VPN
If you can’t watch your favorite events or teams because of your location, a VPN will allow you to get the access you are entitled to, plus extra security and unequaled privacy. Check out our VPN Guide for everything you need to know, including our top pick ExpressVPN.
Devices to Live Stream Out-of-Market San Francisco 49ers Games
Almost all streaming services (and definitely YouTube) provide support for video-capable devices.
These include Android and iOS (iPhone) devices, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, and Roku devices. You can also usually watch on most smart TVs and gaming systems, such as Xboxes and PlayStations.
While it may be odd that one of the world’s most popular sports leagues expects fans to pay hundreds of dollars for NFL Sunday Ticket (via YouTube or YouTube TV subscriptions) just to watch out-of-market games, there are alternative options.
If you don’t have YouTube or YouTube TV and don’t live in San Francisco, you’ll have to settle for highlights and the odd network game of the week.
You could also use a VPN to get around regional restrictions and watch games on a streaming service from anywhere.
Are VPNs legal?
VPNs are legal as long as you don’t use them to do anything illegal, and you probably won’t have to worry about a knock at the door if all you are doing is watching football.
Can I get NFL Sunday Ticket if I can’t sign up for DIRECTV?
The DIRECTV satellite service was, for many years, the only way to get an NFL Sunday Ticket. But that changed in 2023, when NFL Sunday Ticket became a streaming-only affair available through YouTube and as a YouTube TV add-on. The price for this ranges from $349 to $499 per year.
Can I choose which highlights I see on NFL RedZone?
No, you cannot. NFL RedZone switches to games whenever possession changes or a team crosses the 20-yard line, so there’s no way for fans to pick and choose the action they see.
You can be reassured that you won’t miss any touchdowns though.
What radio stations are the San Francisco 49ers on?
San Francisco 49ers games are broadcast on their flagship stations KNBR 680 AM/104.5 FM and KSAN 107.7 FM (The Bone), along with KGO 810 AM in the local region.
Spanish-language broadcasts can be heard on 49ers.com.
49ers game audio can be streamed online from anywhere on Sirius XM NFL Radio.
Do San Francisco 49ers games sell out?
Some San Francisco 49ers games sell out, but this can vary from game to game. Whether a game is sold out or not, local fans can always watch the 49ers on TV or other devices without facing any blackouts as the NFL no longer imposes its blackout policy (last utilized in 2014).
How do I watch other out-of-market games apart from the 49ers?
You’ll find everything you need to know about any NFL team on HotDog. Just start with our main NFL page and branch out from there. We cover everything from the preseason to the draft as well as every game throughout the season, all the way through the Super Bowl.
We’ve got individual viewer’s guides for watching out-of-market NFL games for each team:
Page Updates ▼▲
Updated with 2023 information and the new NFL Sunday Ticket.
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