U.S. troops can watch NFL championship games, with AFN deemed ‘essential’

American military personnel will be able to watch the NFL’s conference championship games Sunday despite the government shutdown, thanks to a new designation concerning the American Forces Network.

On Sunday morning, with the NFL scrambling to supply the games to troops overseas, the Department of Defense designated TV and radio broadcasts the AFN, whose key personnel were to be furloughed by the shutdown, “essential activities.”

..  the comptroller and legal team were able to turn on a channel based on operational necessity and because funds had already been paid on the contract.