*****Updated February 4, 2017*****
Mark your calendars! Superbowl 51 (or LI if you’re a Roman numeral purist), is just around the corner on February 5, 2017. If you’re heading out to a major Superbowl party with friends, family or jovial strangers at the local pub, you might be bringing your game face. But if you’re hosting the party yourself, you’re going to need easy access to the game with an uninterrupted, high-quality stream. You can use a lot of different methods to get that access, but we suggest you watch Superbowl 51 on Kodi. Why? Streaming quality.
During our research, we discovered that your best bet to watch Superbowl 51 on Kodi is through either the BBC iPlayer, Castaway or SportsDevil. This year, Fox has sole rights in the U.S. to stream the game and will be streaming it through Fox Sports Go and any Fox affiliate OTA. However, we tested a large number of addons and FOX affiliate streams, finding that all FOX affiliate streams were down, while the Fox Sports Go add-on failed to load.
However, we can confirm that the Canadian channel TSN will be playing Super Bowl 51 on TSN 3 and 4. We’ve tested both Castaway and SportsDevil, finding that both addons contain working streams to streams TSN 3 and 4. Additionally, the BBC will be playing the game as well, which can be accessed by using the BBC iPlayer or WWW iPlayer addons.
Keep reading below for more information on what this means for you and how to access the BBC iPlayer, as well as Castaway and SportsDevil, which give access to TSN links.
New to Kodi? Head over to our Beginner’s Guide to Kodi if you don’t yet have the Kodi platform installed. Or, look up a few of our Kodi build guides, which will help you install fully-loaded versions of the platform. You may even find that using a popular Kodi build can help you skip a lot of the steps we’ve included in the guide below.
Additionally, if you don’t have a good device to run your Kodi application, it’s not too late to find a good Android TV box before the big game. Some boxes come with Kodi pre-installed, and some even come with specific Kodi builds already installed as well. These devices will make using Kodi, as well as other popular media apps such as Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime, much easier and indeed, more enjoyable. Regardless of the method you use, you can watch Superbowl LI without cable and with much less hassle.
Before you proceed
Last year, some Kodi users received copyright infringement notifications from their ISPs. Although not a common issue, we recommend you use a VPN to stream content online. We recommend IPVanish for this purpose.
IPVanish is VPN service that gives users access to a host of security and anonymity features. With fast servers and one of the best reputations in the VPN industry, we throw our support behind IPVanish for all kinds of web browsing and streaming. IPVanish generously offers our readers a 25% discount on their service plan.
Furthermore, if you’re trying to catch America’s biggest sporting event on the BBC iPlayer, combining Kodi with IPVanish is your best bet. IPVanish helps get past geographic content blocks that might keep you from enjoying the Superbowl 51.
Do Not Use a Free VPN!
If you’re planning to watch the game on an Android TV box or using an Android device of any kind, make sure you avoid free VPNs! A recent study by researchers from CSIRO’s Data 61, University of New South Wales and University of California, Berkeley, discovered that a large number of Android VPN apps carry malware, adware, and spyware. Unsurprisingly, most of those bad app are free, and even more troubling, many of them don’t actually encrypt the data at all. Not only is this dangerous, but this effectively means that installing many free VPNs is actually worse than not using one at all!
This is why we highly recommend that you use a paid VPN service like IPVanish before you decide to watch Superbowl 51 on Kodi. Free VPNs are never free. No app designer is in it for charitable purposes. And while some may simply make small amounts of money through ads, many have far more nefarious purposes in mind. Your personal data is far more valuable to them than the small amount they earn through ad placements.
IPVanish has one of the best reputations in the industry. No ads, no malware or spyware, and yes, the service works exactly as intended. Delete whatever free VPN you’re using right now. It’s just not worth the risk.
Where is Super Bowl LI Broadcasting?
NFL broadcasting rights rotate on a yearly basis. This year, the Super Bowl is broadcasting on the FOX Television Network. As per tradition, the Super Bowl is not broadcasting solely on cable networks, so you won’t have to worry about how to watch the Super Bowl without cable. Instead, you can watch it over the air on FOX.
That said, FOX has locked down any live streams from every single affiliate station that streams through Kodi. We tried literally 100 streams from over a dozen different Kodi addons. We did find a solution, however: BBC iPlayer, Castaway and SportsDevil.
The BBC will be streaming the game live, and you can view the game on Kodi through the BBC iPlayer. We’ve written about how to do this, but we’ll repost those instructions here as well. However, if you are outside of the UK, you will need a VPN in order to access the game.
For Castaway and SportsDevil, we discovered that Shadownet.ro has working streams for TSN 3 and TSN 4.
We also include a few good addons that may be working with US FOX affiliates come game day. We suggest installing more than one addon, just in case, so you’ll want to add these as well. While we can verify that our information is as accurate as possible up to February 5, 2017, we cannot verify that these NFL Kodi addons that you might use to watch Superbowl 51 on Kodi will be active once the game begins. Like you, we’ll be watching the game ourselves, so we won’t be updating this list once the game starts. As is common with online streams, the more people that are using them, the more likely they are to have a strain on bandwidth. To avoid missing big moments, have multiple options as backups, just in case.
How to Watch Superbowl 51 on Kodi
As stated, your best bet for getting Superbowl 51 on Kodi is through the BBC iPlayer addon. Follow the instructions below to get this installed. If you are outside of the UK, you will need a VPN in order to access iPlayer.
There are currently two BBC iPlayer addons: BBC iPlayer and BBC iPlayer WWW. Here are instructions on how to install both. For the game, we strongly recommend BBC iPlayer WWW.
How to Install and Watch BBC iPlayer on Kodi
- Click on Videos
- Click on Add-ons
- Scroll down to the bottom and select Get more
- Scroll down until you find the add-on BBC iPlayer
- Click on the add-on and then click to install
- You will find the add-on under Videos > Addon
You get all of the content currently available through iPlayer on this addon, including the option to live stream BBC content. You’ll have a very attractive visual preview for each show. Unlike the iPlayer WWW add-on, you can’t actually enter your official BBC account information into this one. You can still access all of the BBC content, however, as long as you have a British IP address.
How to Install and Watch iPlayer WWW on Kodi
- Follow steps 1-3 from above
- Scroll down until you find the add-on iPlayer WWW
- Click on the add-on and then click on install
- You will find the add-on under Videos > Add-ons
The iPlayer WWW add-on pulls directly from the BBC website. This is stated as much in the add-on description. As this is how the add-on works, you’ll get notifications when you pull up the add-on telling you that you need a valid license in order to access the content. This also occurs when you attempt to load up any specific TV or radio program.
If you have a BBC account, you can enter the information by going to the Configure section in the add-on settings. This will allow you to access all of the content. You can still access the content, both live and on-demand, without having to put in your BBC credentials. As long as your IP address is located in the UK, you can load the content.
The content is nicely organized on iPlayer WWW, allowing you to easily find the different types of BBC content you’re looking for. As stated, iPlayer WWW pulls directly from the BBC iPlayer site, so the content should follow what you’re used to if you’ve used the iPlayer application before. As with the other addon, you can live stream directly from the BBC.
Castaway and SportsDevil
Click here to access our Castaway Installation Guide.
Click here to access our SportsDevil Installation Guide.
Castaway and SportsDevil have several options for anyone looking for Superbowl 51 live streaming options. Within both, you’ll find TSN 3 and TSN 4, as well as several different FOX affiliates listed that may or may not start working come February 5. To locate these within both addons you’ll need to do the following:
- Click on Live TV
- Click on shadownet.ro
- Click on SPORTS Channels
You can find TSN 3 and TSN 4 by clicking through a few screens. Everything is alphabetized.
You’ll also find the following FOX affiliates in shadownet.ro: FOX 5 Washington DC, FOX 2 St. Louis, FOX 13 News Tampa Bay, under the USA Channels section. Feel free to check these links on your own closer to February 5.
Other Potential Streaming Options
Here is a list of addons that carry some live TV options that weren’t working when we tested them. There is a possibility that these streams may work come game day, so you may want to install them and keep them as a potential option, just in case.
Click here to access our cCloud TV Installation Guide.
cCloud TV is probably going to be your best bet for catching the game live — if the streams are working by game day, that is. There are more than 20 local FOX affiliates and FOX Sports links in this addon, including at least one in Spanish. We tested every single FOX affiliate stream in cCloud to figure out which were working and which were not. At the time we tested it, none were. We suggest installing this one just in case. We’ll update before game day if any of the streams become available.
Who’s Competing in the Superbowl This Year?
In case you’ve been living under a rock somewhere (we can’t blame you, as 2016 was rough), the two teams competing for glory at this year’s Super Bowl are the New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons.
For the Patriots, this will mark their 9th appearance at the Super Bowl. This makes them the first NFL team to make this achievement. The other teams who have earned at least 8 appearances include the Pittsburgh Steelers, Dallas Cowboys, and Denver Broncos. For their part, the Falcons have made only one Super Bowl appearance in the past, at Super Bowl XXXIII against the Denver Broncos.
As it stands, the Patriots are a clear favorite to win this year’s matchup. The website FiveThirtyEight, more famous for tracking win projections in political elections, currently lists the Patriots at a 61% chance of victory. This is in part due to the fact that their current season record is 16-2 going into the Super Bowl, while the Falcons’ record is 13-5. FiveThirtyEight changes their projections regularly, so if you’re betting on the game, make sure you leave your bet until the last minute and check FiveThirtyEight’s projections before casting your bet.
Interestingly, many viewers were hoping to see the Dallas Cowboys, led by rookie Dak Prescott, make an NFL appearance this year. Reports indicated that this years’ NFL ratings were effectively in the gutter until the Cowboys’ breakout season started drawing in more viewers. The Cowboys came painfully close to making that appearance but failed to deliver after a tense upset during their first playoff game against the Green Bay Packers. The 34-31 loss upset the team’s and their fans’ desire to see the Cowboys make it to the Super Bowl for the first time since their last appearance in 1995, more than two decades ago.
It remains to be seen whether the strong interest in the Cowboys’ season this year, and their subsequent failure in the playoffs, will have an impact on the number of viewers during the Super Bowl. Super Bowl viewing history shows that the Super Bowl’s ratings tend to be high when FOX is the broadcaster, which may or may not have an impact, especially after this years’ lower-than-average ratings. If the NFL is capable of carrying its viewing stats over into Super Bowl LI, despite the lack of a Cowboys appearance, with a continued positive viewing history for FOX as the hosting broadcast network, expect to find the streams you’re using to watch Super Bowl 51 on Kodi to be bogged down at times, making multiple addons to turn to all the more necessary.