NEWS FLASH: the NFL is popular.

America’s favorite pastime, favorite sport, and favorite weekly drama series is the NFL.  The league continues to sit at the top of the ratings week after week and year after year with seemingly no end in sight.  Even as we asked a year ago whether or not the NFL was reaching its cultural peak, it just keeps climbing and climbing like the Price is Right yodeler.

Yes, in spite of the existence of Roger Goodell, Hollywood films about concussions, and the absurdity that was DeflateGate, the NFL is more popular than ever.  The latest evidence?  According to Advertising Age, the NFL has scored the Top 11 and 21 of the Top 25 programs on television this fall.  The only outliers?  Two presidential debates, an episode of The Big Bang Theory, and an episode of NCIS.

Here’s the top NFL games by viewership this season… oh, and you’ll be adding Patriots-Giants to this list very soon, likely as the new #1, because it just scored the highest overnight rating of any game so far this season.

1) Seahawks-Cowboys (Fox) 29.4 million
2) Steelers-Patriots (NBC) 27.4 million
3) Cowboys-Eagles (Fox) 27.2 million
4) Giants-Cowboys (NBC) 26.8 million
5) Seahawks-Packers (NBC) 26.4 million
6) Patriots-Cowboys (CBS) 26.1 million
7) Packers-49ers (Fox) 25.9 million
8) Chargers-Packers (CBS) 25.0 million
9) Cowboys-Giants (Fox) 24.5 million
10) Cowboys-Saints (NBC) 24.2 million
11) Broncos-Colts (CBS) 24.0 million
12) GOP Primary Debate (Fox News) 24.0 million

Yes, not even “Donald Trump, real-life presidential candidate” can top the NFL.  Hopefully that means Goodell doesn’t get any ideas and seeks the GOP nomination, although really, nothing would be surprising at this point.

Do you notice another major trend from that list?  That’s an awful lot of Cowboys games – 6 of them in the Top 11!  Maybe they’ve earned that America’s Team mantra after all.  However, the way their season has gone, it just means a few additional million people have bore witness to that pesky 7 game losing streak and the Greg Hardy mess.

[Advertising Age]

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