Thursday’s matchup between the Miami Dolphins and Baltimore Ravens was the final Thursday Night Football broadcast on CBS for the 2017 NFL season. Unfortunately, the ratings for the telecast didn’t send CBS out with a bang.

A lackluster clash between the 4-2 Miami Dolphins (without Jay Cutler) and 3-4 Baltimore Ravens, coming off two straight losses, wasn’t enough to attract a larger audience. And a game that eventually became a 40-0 Ravens win wasn’t competitive enough to retain the viewers who did tune in. As a result, this week’s TNF — which was broadcast on CBS, NFL Network and Amazon — averaged an 8.4 overnight rating, the lowest of the season thus far.

That number is also a 15 percent drop from last week’s Raiders-Chiefs TNF telecast, which drew a 9.9 overnight rating. And that game didn’t even have a cat running around on the field.

Considering the kitty was probably the highlight of Thursday’s Dolphins-Ravens tilt, that might explain those ratings. Though it would have involved NFL Network personalities, rather than CBS staff, maybe TNF could have benefited from letting Steve Smith and Michael Irvin fight. (That may have been difficult, geographically.) Ultimately, CBS might be happy with winning the night overall, topping all networks in prime time.

A comparison to last year’s Week 8 TNF ratings isn’t really pertinent, since that Jaguars-Titans game was only shown on NFL Network. (If you’re curious, it drew a 3.2 rating.) But if there was an attempt to spin that, the boast could be made that this year’s Week 8 TNF game was a 100 percent increase in metered markets, as Deadline’s Dominic Patten points out. No year-to-year ratings decline for Week 8!

Week 9’s TNF featuring Bills-Jets will only be exclusively televised on NFL Network (no Amazon stream for that one, either) before NBC takes the baton from CBS for its five Thursday night games this season.

About Ian Casselberry

Ian is an editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. He has covered baseball for Yahoo! Sports, MLive.com, Bleacher Report and SB Nation, and provides analysis for several sports talk radio shows each week. He currently lives in Asheville, NC.

  • sportsfan365

    Pretty much every NFL team is a fraud, capable of winning by two touchdowns or losing by two touchdowns on any given week. The NFL might think that indicates parity, but to the rest of us it indicates something else.

  • Skippity

    RIP NFL!

  • Blackhawk

    So long, NFL. Boxing and bicycle racing were once popular sports in the US, too.

  • Sting Rey

    this is what happens when you over extend yourself.
    once the nfl was relegated to sundays and monday night. now they play every day of the week except tuesday and wednesday. and you know goodell is trying to find a way to play on those days too.