Deployed US Troops Won't Be Able To Watch NFL Conference Championship Games

Government shutdown is costing deployed service members the NFL Playoffs

Overseas Troops Cannot Watch NFL Playoffs During Government Shutdown

The American Forces Network, which provides entertainment and command information to American military overseas and was scheduled to telecast the AFC and NFC title games, stopped broadcasting Saturday in Europe, Stars and Stripes reported.

The NFL has stepped in to offer free access to the games for the troops using NFL Game Pass.

Saturday was the first day of the shutdown. That's especially bad news for Eagles, Vikings and Jaguars fans, since those teams share a total of four trips to the Super Bowl between them and appearances in a championship game for all three teams have been rare.

NFL PR director Brian McCarthy tweeted that military members would be able to watch the game at USO Centers online through NFL Game Pass.

Defense Department personnel and their families overseas woke up Saturday to much confusion, uncertainty and some anger about how their lives would be affected by the USA government shutdown.

The federal government is now in a partial shutdown.

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It didn't take long for some DOD operations to grind to a halt: American Forces Network, which provides entertainment and command information to USA servicemembers worldwide through its television and radio services, was dark early Saturday morning in Europe.

This means military personnel deployed overseas are at risk of not being able to see the National Football League playoffs and other programming.

AFN services were deactivated due to "sports broadcasts not being considered an essential activity", chief Pentagon spokesperson Dana White said regarding the decision, via The Washington Post.

Deployed members of the United States military rely on a few comforts while away from home - one of those being the ability to watch American sports on the Armed Forces Network (AFN).

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It is unclear how many troops this would actually reach, or if any further measures will be taken to ensure that as many troops as possible can view the games.

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