Ratings Roundup: NFL Continues To Draw Big Numbers Across All Networks

TThe NFL once again posted monster ratings over the weekend, helping NBC, CBS, Fox, and ESPN to solid numbers.

For the third consecutive week, NBC’s Sunday Night Football was the No. 1 broadcast on Sunday night. The New York Jets’ 31-23 victory over the Miami Dolphins earned a 13.0/21 overnight rating/share, a 10% increase over last year’s Week 3 SNF game (Colts-Cardinals, 11.8/19). Through the first three weeks of the NFL season (four broadcasts), NBC has averaged 23.3 million viewers, the most for that period by a primetime NFL package in 14 years (23.6 million in 1996 on ABC, three broadcasts).

CBS’s Week 3 coverage earned high marks for its Sunday doubleheader, its average household rating/share in metered markets rising 13%. The national afternoon window (highlighted by Indianapolis Colts-Denver Broncos) earned a 14.2/27, up 13% from last year’s 12.6/24. The network’s regional-game window in the morning posted a 10.5/22 average household rating/share, up 13% from last year’s 9.3/19. Through three weeks, the NFL on CBS is averaging 12.8/26, up 13% from last year’s 11.3/23.

Fox’s afternoon singleheader (Dallas Cowboys-Houston Texans) posted a 14.0 overnight rating, up 12% from last year (Atlanta Falcons-New England Patriots, 12.5). That is the highest rating for a Fox singleheader since Week 13 in 2005 (14.3) and the largest for a singleheader on any network since Week 16 in 2008 (14.3).

ESPN’s Monday Night Football matchup between the Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers averaged an 11.6 household rating, the best MNF overnight of the season, surpassing last week’s 11.2 for Carolina-Dallas.

College Football
Notre Dame continued to drop games, and NBC’s ratings fell along with it. Saturday’s loss to Stanford notched a 2.1 overnight rating, down 36% from NBC’s third Notre Dame game last year, against Washington (3.3). The 2.1 overnight is the lowest of the season for Notre Dame football on NBC.

NBC was bested by Saturday’s Alabama-Arkansas showdown on CBS, which drew a 5.4 overnight rating, up 146% from the same matchup last year (2.2). That is the highest rating for any regular-season college-football telecast on CBS since Florida-LSU in primetime last year (6.8).

ABC’s Oregon State-Boise State game drew a 3.8 overnight rating, down 5% from Iowa-Penn State last year (4.0). Earlier Saturday, the network logged a 3.1 for regional action featuring UCLA-Texas, down 30% from last year.

Other Sports
Regional MLB action featuring Red Sox-Yankees drew a 2.0 overnight rating on Fox on Saturday afternoon, down 17% from coverage featuring the same matchup last year (2.4). Even if the 2.0 overnight holds, it would mark the lowest rating for a Red Sox-Yankees telecast on Fox since at least 2001. Sunday’s Red Sox-Yankees game on ESPN garnered a 2.2 overnight.

Final-round coverage of The Tour Championship, the final event of the PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup playoffs, logged a 1.3 overnight rating on NBC Sunday afternoon, the lowest overnight rating for final-round coverage since the event became part of the FedEx Cup in 2007. The 1.3 marks a 61% decline from last year (3.3), when Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson finished 1-2.

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