Here’s How to Watch the NFL Playoffs For Free to Find Out Who Makes it to the Super Bowl

Tom Brady
Photo: AP Photo/Adam Hunger.

The road to the Super Bowl begins! With the postseason finally here, many fans are wondering how to watch the NFL Playoffs without cable this year. The good news is, football fans have plenty of options to stream the 2021-2022 NFL Playoffs online—and we’ve rounded up the best picks below.

As always, the playoffs mark the start of the National Football League’s (NFL) postseason games. The single-elimination tournament sees several teams match up from each of the league’s two conferences—the American Football Conference (AFC) and the National Football Conference (NFC)—after qualifying based on regular-season records. It all leads up to the Super Bowl, the league’s championship game, which takes place annually in February.

For the first time ever, the NFL playoffs feature a Monday night game on Wild Card Weekend this year. The Rams host the Cardinals for the first Monday night NFL Playoffs game, marking the third meeting between the two teams this season. But before we get there, the NFL Playoffs kick off with games on both Saturday and Sunday as usual.

Ahead, we’re diving into everything there is to know about the NFL postseason—including when it began, where to watch and how to stream the NFL Playoffs without cable.

When do the NFL playoffs start in 2022?

The 2021-2022 NFL Playoffs kick off with Super Wild Card Weekend, a three-day event beginning on Saturday, January 15, 2022. The event is the first of a three-round, single-elimination tournament within each conference—the AFC and NFC—that will determine which two teams face off at Super Bowl LVI on February 13, 2022.

Where to Watch the NFL Playoffs in 2022

The 2021-2022 NFL playoffs will be broadcast across a number of networks, including ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX. NBC and CBS will air NFL playoff games on Saturday during Wild Card Weekend, beginning on January 15, 2022, with the Las Vegas Raiders vs. Cincinnati Bengals and the New England Patriots vs. Buffalo Bills.

Traditionally, Sunday afternoon games air on CBS and FOX, whereas Sunday Night Football airs live on NBC. While Monday Night Football is typically reserved for ESPN, some games have simulcasted on ABC this season, which includes the first Monday night game in NFL Playoffs history between the Arizona Cardinals and the Los Angeles Rams on January 17, 2022. You can view the list of teams participating along with the full 2021-2022 NFL Playoffs schedule below.

How to watch the NFL Playoffs without cable

steelers nfl playoffs Heres How to Watch the NFL Playoffs For Free to Find Out Who Makes it to the Super Bowl

Image: AP Photo/Evan Vucci.

Football fans have many options to stream the NFL Playoffs without cable this year. In general, your best bet is to try out a live TV streaming service to get complete NFL coverage, allowing you to watch NFL games online throughout the postseason. We’ve included the best packages below, each of which offers major networks—such as NBC, CBS, FOX, ABC or ESPN—to watch the NFL Playoffs online. What’s more, most of the services below offer reasonable free trial periods, giving you a way to watch the NFL playoffs without cable for free. More on that below!

Watch NFL Playoffs 2022 With FuboTV

FuboTV is one of your best options to watch the NFL Playoffs without cable this year. A FuboTV monthly membership costs $64.99, which runs you far less than typical cable bundles. The streamer includes all of the major networks needed to watch the NFL Playoffs online, along with channels like NBCSN and FOX Sports to watch postgame shows. FuboTV is also a favorite when it comes to other sports events, as it offers NHL Network, NBA TV, MLB Network and Golf Channel, among others.

Aside from sports, a FuboTV subscription gives you access to over 100 more channels—including AMC, Bravo, E! and Showtime—along with at least 250 hours of DVR and a streaming library with hundreds of TV shows and movies. And just to sweeten the deal, FuboTV even allows up to three screens to stream at once so that family and friends can join you as you watch the NFL Playoffs online.

Watch NFL Playoffs 2022 With Sling

Sling is another excellent option to watch the NFL Playoffs without cable this year. The streamer currently offers two plans: Sling Blue and Sling Orange. Both cost $35 per month and provide major networks to watch the NFL Playoffs online as games broadcast live.

If you had to choose one, though, we recommend Sling Blue to watch the NFL Playoffs online. Not only does the plan include more channels suited to watching NFL games, but it also allows users to stream on three devices, whereas Sling Orange only allows one. This means that you can split the cost of Sling Blue with two other people, allowing three households to watch the NFL Playoffs online at just over $10 each.

Watch NFL Playoffs 2022 With Hulu+ With Live TV

If you’re looking for a complete package to rival typical cable bundles and watch the NFL Playoffs online, we highly recommend Hulu+ With Live TV. The service, which costs $69.99 per month, offers more than 75 live channels, 50 hours of DVR and hundreds of hours of TV shows and movies not available on Hulu’s base plan—including NBC, CBS and FOX to watch the NFL Playoffs 2022 as airs live. 

Not to mention, Hulu+ With Live TV now comes with Disney+ and ESPN+ at no extra cost to subscribers, allowing users to stream the NFL Playoffs on ESPN and NFL Network. This saves users around $14.99 per month than if they paid for those services separately, and gives you far more options to watch the NFL Playoffs without cable when compared to other streamers.

Watch NFL Playoffs 2022 on ESPN+

For games airing on Monday night, fans can watch the NFL Playoffs without cable on ESPN Plus. ESPN+ costs $6.99 per month for a monthly plan or $69.99 per year for a yearly plan, which saves customers about 15 percent compared to paying month-by-month. In addition to letting users watch the NFL Playoffs online as the games air live, ESPN+ offers exclusive UFC pay-per-view matches for $70 for existing subscribers. New subscribers can also get a special discounted bundle that includes a one-year membership to ESPN Plus, as well as one pay-per-view match for $89.98.

Watch NFL Playoffs 2022 on Paramount+

For NFL games airing on CBS, your best bet is to watch the NFL Playoffs without cable on Paramount Plus. The service, formerly known as CBS All Access, currently offers two plans: an ad-supported Essential Plan for $4.99 per month or $49.99 per year (which saves users 16 percent or around $10 from the monthly price) and an ad-free Premium Plan for $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year (which saves users 16 percent or around $20 from the monthly price.) Students are also eligible to receive a 25 percent discount, running you $3.74 per month for the ad-supported plan or $7.49 per month for the ad-free plan.

Aside from being able to watch the NFL Playoffs online, Paramount Plus offers over 30,000 episodes, 2,500 movies and 30-plus original series like The Good Fight, Why Women Kill, Star Trek: Discovery and the iCarly reboot, among others, in its extensive library.

How to watch the NFL Playoffs for free

aaron rodgers nfl playoffs Heres How to Watch the NFL Playoffs For Free to Find Out Who Makes it to the Super Bowl

Image: AP Photo/Matt Ludtke.

If you’re not ready to shell out cash to watch the NFL Playoffs without cable this year, don’t worry—many of the streaming services included here are currently offering free trial periods to watch the NFL Playoffs for free. Just in time for playoff season, fans can watch the NFL Playoffs for free using FuboTV 7-day free trial offer. The service allows users to stream most of the NFL Playoffs online through major networks like ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC.

To catch the entire postseason, football fans can consider combining FuboTV’s free trial with Sling’s free trial offer. The service, which also offers many channels airing the NFL Playoffs this year, is currently offering a 3-day free trial to users. Last but not least, Paramount+ also gives fans a way to watch the NFL Playoffs for free on CBS for one week with its current 7-day trial offer.

How many teams make the NFL playoffs in 2022?

This year’s NFL playoffs will include 14 teams, seven from each conference. The No. 1 seed in each conference—the Green Bay Packers in the NFC and the Tennessee Titans in the AFC—earns a bye week during the Wild Card Round of the NFL playoffs, along with home-field advantage throughout the postseason until the Super Bowl.

The former structure allowed for 12 teams, made out of 6 from each conference. Previously, two teams in each conference also got first-round byes ahead of the Divisional Round. With 14 teams playing in total this year, this means there will be two more games during the NFL’s Wild Card Weekend.

What teams are in the playoffs in 2022?

The following teams are playing at the 2021-2022 NFL Playoffs: Tennessee Titans, Kansas City Chiefs, Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals, Las Vegas Raiders, New England Patriots, Pittsburgh Steelers, Green Bay Packers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Rams, Arizona Cardinals, San Francisco 49ers and Philadelphia Eagles.

NFL Wild Card Schedule

Saturday, January 15, 2022

Sunday, January 16, 2022

Monday, January 17, 2022

 

The 2021-2022 NFL Playoffs begin on January 15, 2022. 

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