- Associated Press - Friday, September 21, 2012

NEW YORK (AP) - Time Warner Cable agreed to carry NFL Network on Friday, the last major holdout in the channel’s long-running push into more homes.

NFL Network and the NFL RedZone channel will be available to customers of Time Warner and Bright House Networks starting Sunday.

Time Warner is the country’s second-largest cable provider with about 12 million homes. Bright House, with about 2 million, is the sixth biggest.

NFL Network began airing regular-season games in 2006; this year, the number increased from eight to 13. The league initially feuded with several major cable companies over adding the channel but had gradually expanded its availability.

“We’re delighted to have reached an agreement for NFL Network and NFL RedZone that provides a good value to our customers,” Time Warner Cable executive vice president Melinda Witmer said in a release. “The additional games this year and the proven appeal of NFL RedZone will certainly prove to be a draw for our customers. We look forward to a long and productive relationship with the NFL.”

NFL Network will now be in more than 70 million of the country’s approximately 115 million homes with televisions. In 2007, when the league bowed to pressure and simulcast the Patriots-Giants game on CBS and NBC with New England on the verge of going 16-0, the channel was in fewer than 40 percent of households with TVs.

RedZone, produced by NFL Network, whips around to every NFL game on Sunday afternoons, showing touchdowns and other key plays. When Cablevision announced a deal with NFL Network in August, Time Warner became the last big missing piece.

For Time Warner and Bright House customers, NFL Network will be available on the digital basic and sports pass tiers, while RedZone will be available to sports pass customers.

Time Warner and Bright House are major providers in the home markets for 12 NFL teams, including the Jets/Giants, Cowboys and Packers.