eSports and Streaming Boom Could Have Impact On Pro Sports

Picture this:
There’s a madden tournament at your local eSports venue and a few NFL teams made an appearance to support the event. It’s been a close game, but one player takes the victory. Through all of the cheering and celebrating, you overhear a little boy begging his father for an autograph from his favorite player. When the opportunity arises, he runs past the NFL players and up to the gamer controlling the virtual team and asks him instead.
It’s a funny thought but with a recent decline in NFL viewers, it may not be too far from reality.

Whether its a quick mobile game while trying to pass the last few minutes of a workday or maybe you’re climbing the ranks of your favorite FPS, these days, everyone’s a gamer.
More and more players are putting down the controller and turning to sites like Twitch or YouTube to watch their favorite Streamer or eSports Team rather than playing themselves.

While this may seem a little odd for some, people have been watching sports rather than playing themselves for centuries and video games aren’t much different. This form of entertainment is growing incredibly rapidly. In fact, at any given moment there are over 1 million viewers on both Twitch and YouTube Gaming combined.

On the other hand, more children, teenagers, and young adults than ever are losing interest in Pro Sports and turning to eSports for entertainment instead.
An average NFL game was watched by 1.6million (10%) fewer people in 2017 compared to 2016.
Networks are quick to blame “Over Saturation” and “Changes in Viewing Habits” while others blame the election and National Anthem protests but surely there’s something else going on.

Could eSports and streaming be a contributing factor to the drop in viewership of the NFL games over the past few years? We think so. Let us know what you think in the comments below.

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