Armed forces members will get to watch NFL after all

Despite the government shutdown which also knocked Armed Forces Network off the air, American service members overseas will get to watch Sunday's NFL conference championships after all.

As a result of the government shutdown, Armed Forces Network, which broadcasts NFL games to members of the American military overseas, has gone off the air.

This means that Sunday's NFL conference championship games -- the AFC Championship between the Jacksonville Jaguars and the New England Patriots, and the NFC Championship between the Minnesota Vikings and the Philadelphia Eagles -- will not be broadcast to service members overseas.

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According to The Washington Post, both conference championship games will be available at USO facilities worldwide, thanks to a free NFL Game Pass provided by the NFL.

Stars and Stripes noted that complaints have been received by AFN because they remained on the air during the 2013 government shutdown.

Brian McCarthy with the NFL's league offices said the league was working on additional options for service members who did not have access to a USO location prior to Sunday afternoon's kickoff time.

The AFC game is scheduled for a 3:05 pm kickoff, while the NFC game is set to get underway at 6:40 pm.

In addition to NFL games, AFN broadcasts other American television and radio programs from a variety of networks for American service members and their families stationed overseas.

AFN went off the air shortly after the midnight government shutdown time Saturday morning. A televised slate that said "Due to the government shutdown, AFN services are not available," had replaced programming on all the network's channels.

Tweeted messages from service members overseas noted their frustration.