The NFL was expecting the first big game after Election Day to earn a big ratings bump. However, the game delivered the exact opposite result by crashing 23 percent over 2019.
The league was especially looking forward to Sunday’s ratings because the weekend’s game was a grudge match between quarterback stars Tom Brady of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints.
Brees and his Saints blew out six-time Super Bowl winner Brady with a 38 to 3 final, but the ratings did not keep rise to expectations. In fact, the ratings were just as bad of a blowout.
According to Sports Media Watch, Sunday Night Football’s numbers fell 23 percent over 2019’s Week 9 game, netting NBC only 9.5 ratings and 16.88 million viewers.
In fact, Week 9’s viewership was even a decline from Week 8’s 16.93 million viewers.
But Sunday’s tumble in the ratings was not the only Week 9 game to fall into the basement.
Sports Media Watch noted that the game on Fox was down 14 percent, Thursday Night Football on Fox was down six percent, and the Baltimore-Indiana game on CBS was down 11 percent. The only game that saw a rise in viewership was the Pittsburgh-Dallas game on CBS which gained a tiny two percent.
The NFL has been expecting TV ratings to jump now that politics and other sports are in the rear-view mirror. At least with Week 9, that is not yet the case.
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