2018 NFL preseason football is quickly approaching. I’ve covered how to watch NFL football without cable, but I really didn’t go into much detail on how to catch NFL preseason action.
This years Hall of Fame Game will see the Baltimore Ravens face off against the Chicago Bears on Thursday, August 2nd. The game will Air on NBC so you can catch it on your local NBC affiliate using a TV antenna. You can also view it using a free trial to FuboTV which will be streaming the Hall of Fame Game.
Majority of the featured preseason games will air on NFL Network, so your most affordable way to watch is Sling TV’s Blue Package. You can pick up a 7-day free trial. For more information of all that’s available on Sling TV, check out our review of Sling TV.
Two featured games air on ESPN, so you can pick up both the Sling TV Orange and Blue package for $40 per month and watch all the ESPN and NFL Network games.
I’ll publish the featured preseason games and the channels in which they air below, however, there are a few games that air on NBC, CBS, and Fox. They are as follows (All times are Eastern Standard):
- Thursday, Aug. 2 The previously mentioned hall of fame game is on NBC
- Thursday, Aug. 23 Philadelphia Eagles at Cleveland Browns, 8 pm on FOX
- Friday, Aug. 24 Detroit Lions at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 8 pm on CBS
- Saturday, Aug. 25 New Orleans Saints at Los Angeles Chargers, 8 pm, CBS
- Sunday, Aug. 26 Cincinnati Bengals at Buffalo Bills, 4 pm, FOX
- Sunday, Aug. 26 Arizona Cardinals at Dallas Cowboys, 8 pm, NBC
The easiest way to watch these is on your local affiliate using a TV antenna. However, if you want to stream the games you can pick up a 1 week free trial to a service that streams your local affiliate. Hulu live TV is always a good option in most areas. Check our guide on streaming local channels to find a service in your area.
NFL PRESEASON 2018 TV SCHEDULE
All Times Eastern.
Thursday, Aug. 2
Hall of Fame Game: Chicago Bears vs. Baltimore Ravens (Canton, Ohio), 8 pm, NBC
Thursday, Aug. 9
- Cleveland Browns at New York Giants, 7 pm, NFL Network
- Dallas Cowboys at San Francisco 49ers, 10 pm, NFL Network
Friday, Aug. 10
- Atlanta Falcons at New York Jets, 7:30 pm, NFL Network
- Detroit Lions at Oakland Raiders, 10:30 pm, NFL Network
Saturday, Aug. 11
- Minnesota Vikings at Denver Broncos, 9 pm, NFL Network
Thursday, Aug. 16
- New York Jets at Washington Redskins, 8 pm, ESPN
Friday, Aug. 17
- Buffalo Bills at Cleveland Browns, 7:30 pm, NFL Network
Saturday, Aug. 18
- Jacksonville Jaguars at Minnesota Vikings, 1 pm, NFL Network
- Oakland Raiders at Los Angeles Rams, 4 pm, NFL Network
- Cincinnati Bengals at Dallas Cowboys, 7 pm, NFL Network
- Seattle Seahawks at Los Angeles Chargers, 10 pm, NFL Network
- Baltimore Ravens at Indianapolis, 8 pm, ESPN
Thursday, Aug. 23
- Philadelphia Eagles at Cleveland Browns, 8 pm, FOX
Friday, Aug. 24
- Detroit Lions at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 8 pm, CBS
- Green Bay Packers at Oakland Raiders, 10:30 pm, NFL Network (Joined Live in Progress)
Saturday, Aug. 25
- Kansas City Chiefs at Chicago Bears, 1 pm, NFL Network
- Tennessee Titans at Pittsburgh Steelers, 4 pm, NFL Network
- New Orleans Saints at Los Angeles Chargers, 8 pm, CBS
Sunday, Aug. 26
- Cincinnati Bengals at Buffalo Bills, 4 pm, FOX
- Arizona Cardinals at Dallas Cowboys, 8 pm, NBC
Thursday, Aug. 30
- Cleveland Browns at Detroit Lions, 7 pm, NFL Network
- Denver Broncos at Arizona Cardinals, 10 pm, NFL Network
Watching Non-Featured NFL Preseason Games
All of your in-market team’s regular season and preseason games, whether home or away, can be seen on local team’s flagship station using a TV antenna. For instance, I live just west of Baltimore and can watch every Ravens game for free using my Mohu Sky antenna.
Not only will you have access to your local market teams with an antenna, but you will also have the preseason games that are nationally broadcast. Most teams have a broadcast network like ABC or Fox for flagship station. Therefore you can easily use a digital TV antenna or a streaming service that streams your local affiliate.
What About Out of Market Games?
What if you want to watch more than just your local team? Perhaps, you have relocated from Wisconsin and want to watch your Packers preseason games. Well, the NFL has made it easy to do.
Watching live only applies to NFL teams, not within your local market and excludes any of the nationally broadcast games I mentioned above. To watch those games when the air live you need a TV antenna for the local games and Sling TV for nationally televised ESPN games.
But even if you don’t have an Antenna or Sling TV you can still watch those games on NFL Game Pass. NFL game Pass will let you watch those games on demand as soon as the live telecast has ended.
Essentially you are on a few hour delay for your local team and nationally broadcasted games. Otherwise, you can watch the game live online.
Get your antenna now. Not only can you watch your local team’s preseason games, but every game they play all season. You even get to watch if your team makes it to the postseason.
For teams outside your area, you can watch most games on NFL Game Pass. The exceptions are the nationally broadcast games on NBC, CBS, and Fox which you can watch on an antenna, and the few games on ESPN. However, those can be viewed with a subscription to Sling TV.
If you enjoyed this article, please Subscribe to our weekly newsletter. It goes out every Thursday and keeps you up to date on information relevant to cord cutters. Subscribing will also inform you on the latest deals out there for internet, streaming, and more.
If this article didn't answer your specific question, check out the Cord Cutting Guide. It provides links to the most important articles in our over 200 pages of content to help you ditch pay TV.